Scientists developing treatments for the devastating brain disorder Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease (CJD) have unexpectedly blocked the onset of Alzheimer’s disease, the most common cause of dementia through the use of two antibodies. These two antibodies, ICSM 18 and 35, block the damaging effects of a toxic substance called “amyloid beta” in mice, a protein which accumulates and becomes attached to the nerve cells in the brain.
The two antibodies, ICSM 18 and 35, target the prion protein that is implicated as a cause of CJD. Clinical trials of drugs based on the antibodies are due to begin in humans next year as a treatment for CJD. If they are successful, the trials could be repeated for patients with Alzheimer’s disease.
It is exciting and urgent work in the combat of a devastating disease.