New drug found to safely reduce amyloid beta production in people with Alzheimer's disease

New research published today in Science Translational Medicine presents results from a drug trial that explores reducing the production of amyloid as a way of treating Alzheimer’s disease.

This study, carried out at Merck Research Laboratories in New Jersey, USA, describes early tests of a new drug, (full name BACE1 inhibitor verubecestat (MK-8931)) found to safely reduce the production of amyloid beta in 32 people with Alzheimer’s disease.

Responding to this research, Dr Clare Walton, Research Manager at Alzheimer’s Society, said:

'Amyloid plaques are a key hallmark of Alzheimer’s disease and most recent efforts to find new dementia treatments focus on reducing the production of amyloid or clearing plaques out of the brain.

'This study describes a new drug that reduces the production of amyloid in people with dementia and, importantly, it appears to be safer than similar drugs that have come before. This finding has paved the way for much larger clinical trials that are currently underway, and we very much look forward to the results of these in the coming years.'