Alzheimer’s disease can be successfully treated with a commonly used anti-inflammatory drug which can reverse memory loss and brain inflammation, a new study has revealed.
The findings showed that non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) — an anti-inflammatory drug routinely used for period pain — can target this inflammatory pathway, highlighting its importance in the disease model.
In the study, transgenic mice that develop symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease were used where one group of 10 mice was treated with mefenamic acid and 10 mice were treated in the same way with a placebo.
The mice were treated at a time when they had developed memory problems and the drug was given to them by a mini-pump implanted under the skin for one month.
Memory loss was completely reversed back to the levels seen in mice without the disease, suggested the study.
“Our research shows for the first time that mefenamic acid, a simple Non-Steroidal Anti Inflammatory Drug can target an important inflammatory pathway called the NLRP3 inflammasome , which damages brain cells. Until now, no drug has been available to target this pathway, so we are very excited by this result,” said Doug Brough, Researcher, The University of Manchester.
“These promising lab results identify a class of existing drugs that have potential to treat Alzheimer’s disease by blocking a particular part of the immune response,” Brough added in the paper published in the journal Nature Communications.