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What We Learn from the CTAD 2018 (Clinical Trials Alzheimer’s Disease)

We are happy to publish the CTAD 2018 abstracts in the present JPAD issue. As you can see many new interesting studies are presented in this issue of the journal: from new drug trials to biomarkers, imaging studies, as well as new clinical outcomes. More specifically, we will have several hot topics presentation on: 1. Major drug trials using bace inhibitors (verubecestat, lanabecestat, atabecestat, elenbecestat…) in the early phase of the disease (APECS early trials…). Both clinical, biomarkers (MRI, CSF, PET) and safety data will be presented. 2. New data on blood biomarkers including a keynote from R. Bateman, and presentations from Araclon and Roche biomarkers. 3. Results from phase III and IIB trials including a novel and multi-targeted oligosaccharide in patients with mild-moderate AD in China; the AMBAR (Alzheimer’s Management By Albumin Replacement) study, the TOMMORROW trial: a trial to delay the onset of MCI due to AD and qualify a genetic biomarker algorithm, the 18-month STEADFAST trial of azeliragon in participants with mild Alzheimer’s Disease; a longitudinal 148-week extension 4. Results 18 from F-AV-1451-A16: a clinicopathological study of the correspondence between flortaucipir PET imaging and post-mortem assessment of tau pathology. 5. Latest developments in anti-amyloid monoclonal antibodies including aducanumab nonnegligible, and new results and data analyses of the BAN2401 study 201 in early AD. 6. New developments with safety and efficacy of lemborexant for sleep-wake regulation in patients with irregular sleep-wake rhythm disorders and Alzheimer’s Disease dementia. 7. Advances with the ABBV-8E12, a humanized anti-tau monoclonal antibody, for the treatment of early Alzheimer’s Disease. 8. Endpoints for early Alzheimer’s Disease clinical trials: interpretation and application of the draft FDA guidance. And many others… It is important to underline that a not negligible number of abstracts concern non amyloid targets (eg: Tau-related targets but also targets outside the classical AD cascade).

We decided to allow quite long abstracts to give our readers the details they need to better understand each study. We can see that the field is moving toward blood biomarkers, tau PET imaging, combination therapies and e-cognitive outcomes. We are of course all concerned by the negative outcomes of some current drug trials, but as we can see with all the CTAD abstracts the field is continually progressing, with some good perspectives: higher doses for anti-amyloid antibodies, early treatment, combination therapies and new biomarkers are likely key to future success. Blood biomarkers and e-clinical trials may open a new era ol large primary prevention trials. The CTAD China conference, in Shanghai in early September, gave us the opportunity to learn more about research in China, share with Chinese physicians ongoing work in Europe and USA, and establish valuable contacts and collaborations.

The JPAD journal will contribute to the field. All JPAD issues are printed and shipped to the 1500 most important teams in the world including both academic and industry teams in the US, EU, Asia, and South America, all regions involved in AD clinical trials. The JPAD website reported 23,783 different users in the last 12 months. Moreover, 17 articles (ref 117) have been downloaded more than 1,000 times with a maximum of 14,341 for the CTAD abstracts (see ref). Springer-Nature is largely distributing the journal to thousands of medical libraries and schools of medicine worldwide. JPAD’s Impact Factor will be released in 2019.

If we are able to learn from the failures in treatment trials and continue to work tirelessly, we will definitely be able to reach success for our patients and their families in the near future.

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Correspondence to Bruno Vellas.

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Vellas, B., Aisen, P., Weiner, M. et al. What We Learn from the CTAD 2018 (Clinical Trials Alzheimer’s Disease). J Prev Alzheimers Dis 5, 214–215 (2018). https://doi.org/10.14283/jpad.2017.38

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