New Alzheimer’s Vaccine Trial in Scotland

Published on 3rd July 2024 by Scottish Brain Sciences

Scottish Brain Sciences is delighted to be the first clinical site open in the UK & Europe to deliver a clinical trial of a new active immunotherapy (a vaccine) aimed at preventing or slowing the progression of Alzheimer’s Disease.

The study will test whether immunizing people in the earliest stages of the condition, who do not yet show signs of memory or other cognitive problems, can prevent or delay the onset of symptoms.

The ReTain study by Janssen Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (Janssen), a Johnson & Johnson company, is a global trial that aims to evaluate the safety and effectiveness of a vaccine that could slow the build up of tau – a protein known to accumulate in the brains of people with Alzheimer’s and cause symptoms including memory loss.

By supporting the body to tackle this abnormal protein accumulation, it could be possible to stop or delay the disease from progressing, researchers say.

Participants will be offered blood and spinal fluid tests, as well as brain scans, to determine whether they are living in the earliest stage of Alzheimer’s disease. This can be identified by detecting elevated levels of two proteins – amyloid and tau – which are both associated with the pre-symptomatic phase of Alzheimer’s.

Professor Craig Ritchie, CEO and founder of Scottish Brain Sciences, says, “This is a truly innovative programme of research and it is a real validation of the Scottish Brain Sciences business model that our company will be the pioneering site in Europe to deliver this trial.

This is a credit to all the staff who’ve worked so hard since we launched the business 18 months ago. It’s also a sign of progress within Scotland to be able to bring innovative trials for Alzheimer’s disease to the Scottish public and Life Sciences sector, ahead of the rest of Europe and the UK.”

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