The Phase II clinical trial of a treatment using naturally occurring antibodies (IGIV) has achieved significantly lower rates of ventricular enlargement (6.7% vs 12.7% per year) and less whole-brain atrophy (1.6% vs 2.2% per year) than control subjects who initially received placebo. The trial ran for 18 months and involved 24 patients with mild to moderate Alzheimer's disease, of whom 16 received IGIV once or twice a month for the whole period, and 8 received a placebo for the first 6 months. Those who responded best to IGIV did not measurably decline over 18 months, and had an average rate of brain shrinkage and average rate of ventricular enlargement comparable to the rate previously reported in normal elderly individuals. Most tellingly, differences in rates were associated with dosage rates (there were four different regimens). A much larger trial is now being carried out.
The results were presented April 13 at the American Academy of 62nd Annual Meeting in Toronto.