The September/October 2019 issue of NeuroPerspective features our comprehensive annual review of the Alzheimer’s space, including a review of the current conceptual trends vis-a-vis pathophysiology, mechanisms, and therapeutic targets. 2019 has seen greatly expanded efforts aimed at harnessing neuroimmunological components in the service of avoiding toxic levels of inflammation, while promoting microglial clearance of aberrant protein aggregates. There has also been a willingness to fund novel models for AD and its treatment, including infection models. This is not to completely dismiss the most recent iterations of the ‘amyloid theory’, beta amyloid oligomers are clearly toxic and play some role in the Alzheimer’s process, including setting the stage for tau aggregates to inflict damage. The original amyloid hypothesis, featuring plaque as the active edge of pathology, is an anachronism, we are just beginning the process of vetting the role of tau and tau therapeutics in clinical AD.
Among the 200+ programs assessed are those from: AbbVie, Alector, AC Immune, Allergan, Alkahest/Grifols, Anavex, Asceneuron, Axon-Neuroscience, Biogen, Cognition Therapeutics, Cortexyme, Denali, EIP Pharma, Eisai, E-Scape, Genentech, JNJ, Klogene, Lilly, Lundbeck, Merck, Novartis, Oryzon, ProMIS, Roche, Rodin Therapeutics, Takeda, TauRx, Tetra Drug Discovery, and Voyager. Cortexyme and Rodin Therapeutics are the foci of the two Company Review sections; sidebars include coverage of the current state of the AD Biomarker art and an overview of the POC timelines for major AD programs.
The Sept/Oct issue also includes a full review of Frontotemporal Dementia (FTD), including an evaluation of the complex heterogeneity within this umbrella category, with marked divergences in genotype and phenotypic signs. FTD programs are evaluated, including those from AbbVie/Alector, Biogen, Aquinnah, and Wave Life Sciences/Takeda.
Commentary covers such diverse topics as Novartis‘ Zolgensma faux pas; Marinus‘ lackluster PPD results; AbbVie‘s PSP failure, Vanda‘s ‘perplexity’, and the impending battle between Jazz and Harmony in the narcolepsy space.