Latest big hope against Alzheimer's falls flat in clinical trials

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A promising potential treatment for Alzheimer's disease has failed to produce results in the late stages of a clinical trial, according to recent reports.

The drug, Dimebon, had shown immense promise for halting cognitive decline during early testing, according to a report in the New York Times. Originally marketed as an antihistamine in Russia during the 1980s, Dimebon was being developed as an Alzheimer's treatment by San Francisco-based Medivation and global drug giant Pfizer. The results of the first late-stage clinical trial, however, showed that the once-promising drug had virtually no effect after six months of treating mild to moderate Alzheimer's compared with a placebo, the Times reported.

Tests will continue to determine whether Dimebon is effective when coupled with other medications, and the drug is still being tested as a potential treatment for Huntington's disease, the newspaper said. The price of Medivation stock fell by nearly two-thirds to $13.10 Wednesday.


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