Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Physicians Study Whether "Super-Aspirin" Prevents Alzheimer's

Date:
November 20, 1998
Source:
University Of Rochester
Summary:
Doctors at the University of Rochester and 39 other medical centers around the nation have begun a research study to see if a drug known as a super-aspirin -- an investigational compound made possible by basic medical research during the last decade at the University's Medical Center -- helps prevent Alzheimer's disease.

Doctors at the University of Rochester and 39 other medical centers around the nation have begun a research study to see if a drug known as a super-aspirin -- an investigational compound made possible by basic medical research during the last decade at the University's Medical Center -- helps prevent Alzheimer's disease.

Related Articles


Twenty Rochester-area patients will be part of a group of about 1,300 people nationwide who will be treated with the experimental drug, which is similar to ibuprofen, naproxen, aspirin, and other painkillers, but appears to be safer and much more efficient at squelching pain and inflammation. The first of the drugs is currently being reviewed for the treatment of arthritis and may be available next year.

The drugs target cycloxygenase-2 or cox-2, an enzyme in the body first discovered and cloned by a University team led by Don Young and Kerry O'Banion. Scientists believe the enzyme is at the root of the pain and inflammation we feel from a variety of ailments, including arthritis. Existing painkillers like ibuprofen and aspirin inhibit both cox-2 and cox-1, a closely related enzyme. For years physicians believed that knocking out cox-1 helped patients feel better, but now most doctors believe that cox-2 is the real pain-causing culprit in many illnesses. Currently drugs targeting cox-2 are being tested as a way to treat arthritis more aggressively with fewer side effects, and they're being looked at as a possible way to prevent colon cancer.

This study is one of the first to see whether such drugs might prevent or delay Alzheimer's disease. During the past few years, O'Banion and others have discovered that cox-2 is active in the brains of people who have the disease. Though the precise cause of Alzheimer's disease is still a mystery, scientists believe the enzyme plays some role in the sickness and death of brain cells of patients. Since cox-2 inhibitors muck up the enzyme's activity, they might help protect the brain against injury.

"This is a very exciting step in our efforts against Alzheimer's disease," says Pierre Tariot, a leader of the study and director of the University's Program in Neurobehavioral Therapeutics at Monroe Community Hospital, the University's main Alzheimer's treatment site. "Until now our efforts have been directed toward treating the symptoms of the disease, and as a result we have a whole series of drugs available or in development for people who have full-blown Alzheimer's."

In the study, Tariot and Anton Porsteinsson, the other principal investigator at the University, will randomly assign patients to receive either the cox-2 inhibitor Vioxx or a placebo for two years, and patients will be evaluated every few months by physicians. (Vioxx is manufactured by Merck, which is funding the $6 million nationwide study.) If the drug does work, fewer patients will develop the disease than physicians would normally expect.

"This is one of the first studies to look at possibly delaying the onset of Alzheimer's disease in people who don't have it yet but are at risk," adds Tariot. "It's remarkable that we can even consider the possibility of prevention; just 10 years ago that thought was preposterous."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University Of Rochester. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University Of Rochester. "Physicians Study Whether "Super-Aspirin" Prevents Alzheimer's." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 20 November 1998. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1998/11/981120075812.htm>.
University Of Rochester. (1998, November 20). Physicians Study Whether "Super-Aspirin" Prevents Alzheimer's. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 31, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1998/11/981120075812.htm
University Of Rochester. "Physicians Study Whether "Super-Aspirin" Prevents Alzheimer's." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1998/11/981120075812.htm (accessed October 31, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Friday, October 31, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Fauci Says Ebola Risk in US "essentially Zero"

Fauci Says Ebola Risk in US "essentially Zero"

AP (Oct. 30, 2014) NIAID Director Anthony Fauci said the risk of Ebola becoming an epidemic in the U.S. is essentially zero Thursday at the Washington Ideas Forum. He also said an Ebola vaccine will be tested in West Africa in the next few months. (Oct. 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Nurse Defies Ebola Quarantine With Bike Ride

Nurse Defies Ebola Quarantine With Bike Ride

AP (Oct. 30, 2014) A nurse who vowed to defy Maine's voluntary quarantine for health care workers who treated Ebola patients followed through on her promise Thursday, leaving her home for an hour-long bike ride. (Oct. 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Pot-Infused Edibles Raise Concerns in Colorado

Pot-Infused Edibles Raise Concerns in Colorado

AFP (Oct. 30, 2014) Colorado may have legalized marijuana for recreational use, but the debate around the decision still continues, with a recent - failed - attempt to ban cannabis-infused edibles. Duration: 01:53 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
British Navy Ship Arrives in Sierra Leone With Ebola Aid

British Navy Ship Arrives in Sierra Leone With Ebola Aid

AFP (Oct. 30, 2014) The British ship RFA ARGUS arrived in Sierra Leone to deliver supplies and equipment to help the fight against Ebola. Duration: 00:42 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins