Development of treatments & diagnostics for Alzheimer’s disease

Impact: Other Impacts

Description of impact

Alzheimer's disease (AD) affects one in seven of the population over 60 years of age, and represents an increasing burden on worldwide medical and care resources. Treatments currently available are symptomatic. Despite pharmaceutical industry efforts there has been little indication of a marketable product for long-term treatment.

To address this problem, a joint venture was established in 2001 between the University of Aberdeen and TauRx Pharmaceuticals. A team was created of chemists, biologists, animal behaviourists, working together with a clinical trial team. A drug effective against the progress of AD based on the compound methylene blue was synthesised and scaled up within the Chemistry Department (led by Professor John Storey), with a quality that was proved acceptable through successful phase two clinical trials (2006-8), and is now used in phase three clinical trials which are due to complete in 2015. Several other drug candidates have also been developed and evaluated in pre-clinical and phase one clinical studies that show promise. Collaborations with commercial pharmaceutical companies have as a result led to the manufacture of significant quantities of drug medicines for TauRx Pharmaceuticals based on IP generated within the Chemistry Department and these drugs have been used in clinical trials and for named patient supply (c. 60 patients). This has resulted in increased commercial revenue for these companies and the creation of new employment.
Impact statusOpen
Category of impactOther Impacts