Brown physician-scholar continues to play key role, including recent encouraging clinical trials.
Two important advancements in Alzheimer’s disease research have been made possible by the work of Rhode Island researchers—including Stephen Salloway, MD, the Martin M. Zucker Professor of Psychiatry and Human Behavior and a professor of neurology, who also directs Neurology and the Memory and Aging Program at Butler Hospital in Providence.
Salloway will celebrate 30 years at Brown this coming summer, and he has been focused on Alzheimer’s disease throughout that entire tenure. Four years ago, he helped lead recruitment and imaging for a clinical trial of a promising Biogen drug called aducanumab, which is currently under US Food and Drug Administration review for approval as a potential therapeutic for Alzheimer’s patients.
This month, Salloway is a co-author of a New England Journal of Medicine study on an Alzheimer’s drug by Eli Lily and Company called donanemab. The study, conducted at 56 research sites across North America, including two in Rhode Island, found that in patients with early Alzheimer’s disease, the use of donanemab resulted in improved cognition and ability to perform routine activities.
Salloway—who is based at The Warren Alpert Medical School and affiliated with the Carney Institute for Brain Science—shared what the trial results mean, how the drugs are related, and Rhode Island’s role in Alzheimer’s research moving forward.