Alzheimer's Matters Blog

2013: A Year of Bold New Initiatives and Clinical Trials

March 1, 2014

Category: ADDF Impact

Liz and Randal Sandler

Liz and Randal Sandler

In 2013, the Alzheimer's Drug Discovery Foundation (ADDF) funded nearly 40 drug research programs around the world. We look forward to continuing to advance the most promising Alzheimer’s research and improving the lives of millions around the world, thanks to your ongoing support and generosity. 

Major Initiatives

ADDF ACCESS: In November, we expanded the ADDF ACCESS program, which provides scientists in academia and small biotechnology companies with access to a larger virtual network of drug discovery experts and contract research organizations. Learn more about how ADDF ACCESS is helping researchers accelerate their work.

Sandler Challenge Grant: Board member Randal Sandler and his wife Liz generously pledged $1 million to the ADDF in support of a new initiative to accelerate clinical trials. The grant is specifically for "repurposing" trials of drugs currently used to treat other diseases that could also treat Alzheimer's. As part of their pledge, the Sandlers are challenging others to partner with the ADDF to raise an additional $3 million by the end of 2014. We want to extend special thanks to those who have already responded to the challenge: The Charles Evans Foundation and their Co-Trustees Mrs. Bonnie Pfeifer Evans and Mrs. Alice Shure, in addition to Mr. Eli Jacobs, Mr. Ray and Barbara Dalio, and McCaffrey Family Fund. Learn more.

Aging & Alzheimer's Prevention Program: We recently launched Cognitive Vitality, a new website that will provide a credible independent scientific voice to claims about whether certain medicines, supplements, and natural products can prevent or delay cognitive aging and Alzheimer’s disease.

Spotlight on Research

Dr. Paul Edison, of the Imperial College of London, has initiated enrollment for a clinical trial investigating whether the diabetes drug liraglutide reduces inflammation and glucose utilization in the brains of people with early Alzheimer’s. The ADDF and the Alzheimer’s Society (UK) provided seed funding, which sparked additional investment by other foundations, the UK government, and pharmaceutical companies. The ADDF is continuing to partner with Alzheimer’s Society (UK) and recently announced a joint funding call for repurposing projects in Alzheimer’s.

In September, Metabolic Solutions Development Company released promising data from an ADDF-funded early stage clinical trial of its mitochondria-targeted drug for early Alzheimer’s disease and is now moving into later stages of development.

The ADDF and The W. Garfield Weston Foundation have financially collaborated to support a clinical trial investigating the potential for hypertension drugs to slow Alzheimer’s progression. The trial will be led by Dr. Sandra Black and the Toronto Dementia Research Alliance at the University of Toronto. Learn more.