A drug candidate for treating Lewy body dementia failed to show any beneficial effects, and has been dropped from development.
In a study of 269 patients with dementia with Lewy bodies, two doses of intepirdine were virtually indistinguishable from placebo in measures of motor function, cognition, and gait. The low dose of the drug, 35 milligrams a day, actually worsened patients’ symptoms compared with placebo.
The stock price of the drug company (Axovant) sponsoring the compound dropped 50 percent in one day.
The FDA has not approved any drug to help Alzheimer’s since 2003.
Interestingly, anti-infective drugs have never been deeply examined for their effect on Alzheimer’s patients at any stage of the disease. However, there has been at least one report of a few patients benefitting, and a report of a beneficial effect in lab studies of neurons.
Hindering the study of antibiotics is the fact that most are, by now, off patent and available in generic form. Thus, no pharmaceutical company would be likely to financially support any clinical trials. These would probably have to await government funding.