June is Alzheimer’s and Brain Awareness Month, a time when we shine a light on a disease that affects millions of people worldwide. Alzheimer’s disease is a progressive disorder that causes brain cells to waste away (degenerate) and die. It’s the most common cause of dementia, accounting for 60-80% of dementia cases. Dementia is a continuous decline in thinking, behavioral and social skills that disrupts a person’s ability to function independently. Alzheimer’s disease is not a normal part of aging, and it affects more than just the elderly.
There is no cure for this disease, but there are two currently available treatments that focus on removing beta-amyloid from the brain to reduce the functional and cognitive decline associated with Alzheimer’s. There are also other treatments that improve the quality of life for people with Alzheimer’s.
Alzheimer’s Clinical Research
Today, there are currently 459 active clinical trials on Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias (AD/ADRD) supported by the National Institute on Aging (NIA). Clinical trials are a cornerstone in the fight against Alzheimer’s disease, playing a crucial role in the search for new therapies and potential cures. They provide the means to test new treatments, study disease progression, and discover new methods of detection. However, conducting clinical trials in Alzheimer’s disease presents unique challenges, making them more complicated, costly, and slower than trials for other diseases.2
Disease Complexity Requires Complex Clinical Trial Designs
The progression and presentation of Alzheimer’s disease can vary widely among patients, adding complexity to the design and execution of clinical trials. This includes the need for extensive screening procedures such as neurocognitive tests, MRIs, PET scans, and CSF tests, which can be costly and time-consuming, especially for asymptomatic patients. These tests often screen out more patients than they screen in, leading to high screen-failure rates and driving up costs.3
Other challenges in Alzheimer’s clinical trials range from limited patient awareness and lack of clear diagnosis to infrequent trial referrals, which hinder trial success. Approximately 99% of eligible patients are never referred to or even consider participating in an Alzheimer’s clinical trial.
The iMednet Advantage in Complex Neurology Studies
Neurology studies are complex and require flexible technologies with feature depth. The iMednet platform has supported hundreds of neurology-related clinical trials. Highly configurable, intuitive, and easy to use, iMednet is designed to help research sponsors and Contract Research Organizations (CROs) get studies up and running quickly and to see them through with a full suite of native capabilities.
By streamlining clinical trial operations, the iMednet platform can help address some of the barriers facing Alzheimer’s and other neurological and CNS-related clinical trials. Intuitive user interfaces and intelligent build tools, combined with powerful automation simplify complex processes and ensure data quality. Reducing the complexity helps to streamline study-related activities. By making the clinical trial process more efficient, iMednet can help reduce the time and costs associated with these trials.
In the fight against Alzheimer’s disease, every effort counts. As we observe Alzheimer’s and Brain Awareness Month, we recognize the importance of clinical trials in this fight and the role that research teams and technologies play in making these trials more efficient and accessible. Contact us to learn more about how our team and our platform can be a partner in transforming the landscape of Alzheimer’s and related clinical trials. Together, we can make a difference in the lives of those affected by this devastating disease.
 https://www.nia.nih.gov/research/ongoing-AD-trials, accessed June 20, 2023