Qunicy Medical Center, a Steward Family Hospital Announces Alzheimer's Disease Drug Trial

Friday, January 20, 2012

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Researchers at The Alzheimer’s Disease Center (TheAlzCenter.org) at Quincy Medical Center today announced that they are participating in an international, multisite phase 2 clinical research study to test an investigational medication, known as SAR110894D, on the cognitive performance of study participants with mild to moderate Alzheimer’s disease.

“Alzheimer’s disease is a devastating illness because not only does it affect patients, but it affects families as well,” says Anil Nair, MD, chief of Neurology and principal investigator at TheAlzCenter.org.

The Alzheimer’s Association estimates that approximately 5.4 million Americans are living with Alzheimer’s disease, a number that is expected to almost triple to 16 million by 2050, and that the number of Americans currently living as caregivers to someone with Alzheimer’s or other type of dementia is 15 million. As deaths from other major diseases such as heart disease and stroke have decreased, deaths from the Alzheimer’s disease increased 66 percent between 2000 and 2008. It is now the sixth-leading cause of death in the U.S

“While there is no known cure for Alzheimer’s, some medications exist to manage or slow down its symptoms,” Dr. Nair says. “This study will accept participants who are already taking such a medication, donepezil (brand name Aricept), and test the safety and effectiveness of an additional investigational medication.”

The medication, taken orally, is manufactured by Sanofi-Aventis U.S., which is sponsoring the study. Dr. Anil Nair reports no financial interest in Sanofi-Aventis U.S.

To participate in the study, participants must be taking donepezil for the treatment of Alzheimer’s and be able to live independently, but still require assistance from a family member or a caregiver on a regular basis. They must be 55 or older, have a diagnosis of mild to moderate Alzheimer’s, and have the family member or caregiver willing to accompany them for each study visit.

Study participants will receive either the investigational medication or a placebo, in addition to their regular donepezil therapy. Total study duration for each patient is up to 38 weeks. Study treatment will be provided at TheAlzCenter.org, located at Quincy Medical Center, 114 Whitwell Street, Quincy, MA 02169.

Participants will receive the medicine at no cost, along with study-related assessments including blood tests, electrocardiograms, physical exams, eye exams and memory and other cognitive tests.

TheAlzCenter.org at Quincy Medical Center is a state of the art clinical and research facility that aims to advance the field of geriatric neurology and reduce the costs of debilitating diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease and other related dementias. In addition to providing preventive, diagnostic and therapeutic services to patients with neurodegenerative and related diseases, the center runs clinical trials in multiple indications, primarily in Alzheimer’s disease. For more information on the clinical study, contact Sheela Chandrashekar: (617) 302-6388 at TheAlzcenter.org or email study@thealzcenter.org.

About Quincy Medical Center, A Steward Family Hospital

Quincy Medical Center has played a vital role in the community since 1890, serving the needs of its diverse patient population without exception and providing high quality, comprehensive emergency, medical and surgical services to patients in a uniquely personal and compassionate manner. A 196-bed acute care community hospital, QMC is a high value provider with outcomes at or better than most national quality benchmarks and at lower costs than many providers in the region. Quincy Medical Center is part of the Steward Health Care System,the largest fully integrated community care organization and community hospital network in New England and the second largest private employer in Massachusetts. Headquartered in Boston, Steward has more than 16,000 employees serving more than one million patients annually in 85 communities. For more information, visit www.steward.org.


Media Contacts:

Dr. Nair is available for interviews. If you would like to learn more about this new study and other research opportunities at TheAlzCenter.org or to set up an interview please contact:

Sandra McGunigle: (617) 376-4020 at QMC.

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