According to a new study published in Alzheimer's study and therapy, the experimental vaccine reduces the accumulation of two types of toxic proteins that are believed to cause Alzheimer's disease without any adverse effects such as brain swellings.
The long-term study was conducted by the University of Texas Brain Institute of the University of Texas at Southwest Peter O'Donnell.
"If the onset of the disease can be delayed for another five years, it would be immense for patients and their families," said Dr. Doris Lambrakcht-Washington, senior author of the study. "The number of dementia cases may drop by half."
Earlier promising vaccines cause "severe swelling of the brain" in some patients.
The skin-induced vaccine activates an immune response that reduces the accumulation of harmful tau and beta-amyloids.
"This study is the culmination of a decade-long study that has repeatedly demonstrated that this vaccine can effectively and safely target animal models, which we think may cause Alzheimer's disease," said Dr. Roger Rosenberg, founder of the Center for Alzheimer's disease in the Southwest WT. "I believe we are approaching the testing of this therapy in humans.
So far, it has been tested safely in three mammals and could soon pave the way for clinical trials.
"The vaccine is a short list of promising antibody therapies aimed at protecting against the two types of proteins that kill brain cells as they spread to lethal plaques and brains on the brains of Alzheimer's patients, UT Southwestern.
Alzheimer's progressively worsens the brain in approximately 5.7 million American patients. This number is expected to double by 2050, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
There is currently no effective treatment for Alzheimer's disease.
The new study says the vaccine may be most effective in patients with high levels of "tau and amyloid stored in the brain," but before the patient has fully developed Alzheimer's disease.
"The longer you wait, the less it will work," Dr. Rosenberg said. – Once these plaques and tangles are formed, it may be too late.