Clinical trial for vascular dementia begins recruitment

From the spring 2015 issue of Care and cure magazine, find out about a major 4 year clinical trial for vascular dementia.

A major clinical trial of a blood pressure drug to treat vascular dementia has begun recruiting volunteers. Led by Professor Peter Passmore at Queen's University Belfast, the £2.25 million trial will recruit almost 600 people around the UK and will last for four years.

The trial, which is being funded by Alzheimer's Society and the British Heart Foundation, will recruit people with a particular type of vascular dementia called subcortical ischaemic vascular dementia. Trial participants will be given either a placebo or amlodipine, a drug that is commonly used to treat high blood pressure, to test whether it may be used to treat vascular dementia.

Dr Doug Brown, Director of Research and Development at Alzheimer's Society, said

'By testing a drug that is already licensed for other uses, this trial could result in a treatment for people with dementia much faster than developing one from scratch.

'Through our Drug Discovery programme, Alzheimer's Society is committed to the concept of repurposing treatments used for other conditions to develop them as new treatments for different forms of dementia.'

Professor Peter Weissberg, Medical Director at the BHF, said

'Since amlodipine is inexpensive and available for certain conditions, there's little incentive for a pharmaceutical company to fund a trial like this. It's therefore vital that the BHF and Alzheimer's Society, as charities, have joined forces to make this trial possible.'

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