The founding executive director and chief science officer at the Alzheimer’s Drug Discovery Foundation discussed goals and current work being conducted by its Diagnostics Accelerator initiative.
“Imagine a world where even primary care doctors could see a patient with a memory complaint, hopefully do a brief cognitive assessment, and send the patient off for a blood test, which then—just like in every other disease state—defines the diagnosis.”
In the closing weeks of last year, data from the phase 3 EMERGE clinical trial suggested that a high-dose regimen of Biogen’s aducanumab, an investigational amyloid-beta targeting human monoclonal antibody, reduces the clinical decline of patients with prodromal Alzheimer disease. Despite not showing an impact on the clinical decline, a subset of those exposed to high-dose aducanumab hinted at supporting the findings. The treatment is now expected to be put forth in a biologics license application (BLA) to the FDA in Q3 of this year.
That assessment was conducted using an amyloid ß positron emission tomography (PET scan, dubbed Amyvid, which was supported in its early days of development by the Alzheimer’s Drug Discovery Foundation (ADDF). The ADDF has since gone on to aid a number of other initiatives in the dementia space and most recently has helped offer $50 million in commitments from leading scientific philanthropists, to develop a technology-based approach to the early detection of memory impairment and decline, through its Diagnostics Accelerator initiative.1
To find out more about the overall goal of the initiative, what the ADDF is currently working toward with it in the dementia space, and what changes to expect in the coming years in the space, NeurologyLive connected virtually with Howard Fillit, MD, founding executive director and chief science officer, ADDF.
1. ALZHEIMER’S DRUG DISCOVERY FOUNDATION’S DIAGNOSTICS ACCELERATOR ANNOUNCES FIRST DIGITAL BIOMARKER RESEARCH AWARD AND DATA SHARING PLATFORM [press release]. New York, NY: ADDF; Published April 29, 2020. Accessed May 15, 2020. alzdiscovery.org/news-room/announcements/ADDF-diagnostics-accelerator-first-digital-biomarker-research-award