What if there was a medication that could treat not just one, but three devastating diseases: leukemia, Alzheimer’s, and Parkinson’s disease? Hoping that the drug, nilotinib fits the bill, researchers at Georgetown University Medical Center are anticipatory. Currently approved to be used in people that have one kind of leukemia, a small trial is producing great excitement in its promising results to rid the brain of toxic proteins.
Fernando Pagan, Georgetown’s medical director of the translational neurotherapeutics program, explains it this way: “Our drug goes into the cells to turn on that garbage disposal mechanism. And if we’re able to degrade these proteins, we could potentially stop the progression of this disorder.”
Because of the exciting results with the small trial, a new trial is being launched. This trial will be more in-depth and will involve 75 Parkinson’s disease patients and 42 Alzheimer’s patients. Hopefully these results will be equally as positive, but regardless, the years of research that have gone into evaluating nilotinib and other new prospective developments are helping pave the way towards feasible treatment solutions, or perhaps an eventual cure.
Mice trials have demonstrated some encouraging results, with Parkinson’s mice actually being cured. It’s also proven effective in a small number of human trials in individuals with Parkinson’s disease and dementia, for which there currently isn’t a treatment designed to stop or even slow the advancement of the diseases. For those in the initial testing phase, improvements in a variety of areas were noted: speech and mobility, most notably.
The next phase of the study has already begun by currently enrolling new patients with Parkinson’s or Alzheimer’s disease. This phase is anticipated to be completed in about a year. Additional information about the upcoming Alzheimer’s study is available here, and information about the Parkinson’s study can be found here.
For additional resources on supporting people that have Parkinson’s disease or Alzheimer’s disease, ask the aging care experts at CareWorks Health Services. We are able to provide a wide range of expert in-home care services with our properly trained and experienced Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s caregivers. Contact us in Orange County, California at (949) 859-4700 to schedule a free in-home assessment or to allow us to answer any questions you might have.