The media is constantly in the crosshairs. Too much information, not enough information, not the right information--at times it seems like nailing jello to the wall.
A fact that our society has missed--WE are the media. All of us. Creating news, analyzing data, telling stories and consuming news--us, us, us, and us.
If the answers are wrong, we need to start taking responsibility for the questions. They may be wrong too.
Although not welcomed into the conference I had many opportunities to network and discuss the meeting with peers and experts in Alzheimer's Disease research--more on that later.
I learned of the abstract below rather quietly from the website and knew a few colleagues that attended the session. Funny how I didn't speak to one person that believed the spin propogating in the secondary news outlets.
How hard could it be to review the findings and decipher the outcomes reported in conflicting headlines.
First Phase 3 Study of Tau-Targeting Drug in Alzheimer's Disease
Phase 3 Trial of the Tau Aggregation Inhibitor Leuco-Methylthioninium-Bis(hydromethanesulfonate) (LMTM) in Mild to Moderate Alzheimer's Disease Abstract ID: a10476
Methods: The present 15-month double-blind, placebo-controlled trial (NCT01689246) was performed in patients with probable AD, Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE) score in the range 14-26, Clinical Dementia Rating (CDR) 1-2 and age < 90 years. Patients were randomized 3:3:4 to receive oral LMTM at doses of 150 or 250 mg/day or placebo (containing 8 mg/day, to maintain blinding) respectively. Primary efficacy outcomes were change from baseline on cognitive (Alzheimer's Disease Assessment Scale cognitive subscale; ADAS-Cog) and functional (Alzheimer's Disease Cooperative Study Activities of Daily Living; ADCS-ADL) scores. Three-monthly assessment included magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) as a disease modifying outcome. Other secondary outcomes included ADCS-CGIC and MMSE.
Results: A total of 891 patients were randomized, of whom 62% were female. Approved AD treatments were being taken in 85%. The mean age was 70.6 (SD 9.0) years and baseline MMSE score was 18.7 (SD 3.4). Dementia was of moderate severity (MMSE score 14-19) in 61%. The study efficacy and safety outcomes will be reported.
Conclusions: The outcomes of this phase 3 trial will highlight the potential therapeutic value of tau aggregation inhibitor therapy in AD. A second phase 3 trial of LMTM for AD will be completed and reported later in 2016.
As reported at AAIC 2016, in the full study population, neither intervention arm of the trial was different from placebo. However, in a prespecified analysis of a subgroup of the study population that was not taking an approved Alzheimer’s therapy at the beginning of the study (in other words, who received LMTM as a monotherapy), there was a statistically significant benefit on the cognitive and functional outcomes, and brain atrophy measured by MRI. --Alzheimer’s Association AAIC Press Office
I think its time we begin to doubt and to believe something new. The evidence is there--are you brave enough?
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