A new injection which could halt the
progress of Alzheimer's is expected to be ready within 2-years. The 'bapineuzumab' injection has entered the final stages of testing. This injection has been
proved to stop and even reverse the damage caused by the illness.
Existing medications temporarily delay the progress of Alzheimer's but they do not treat the underlying causes. However, this injection prevents the chemical build-up (amyloid plaque) that affects the brain and causes damage. Early tests have shown that the injection can cut the build up of these amyloid plaques by about 25%. Patients will have to take this injection at regular intervals for the rest of their lives. Scientists have also stated that this jab might not work for every patient, especially those who carry a gene that raises the odds of the disease. Some side-effects like vasogenic cerebral edema (swelling of the brain) were seen in some patients who were given higher doses of the injection.
Although it will not be a cure, this vaccine is being cited as one of the greatest hopes for a breakthrough in Alzheimer's which affects millions of people across the world. Drug firms Pfizer, Johnson & Johnson and Elan Corporation have supported the development of the injection.