At Ohio State University, clinical researchers have successfully tested deep brain stimulation as a possible treatment option to slow down the onset of Alzheimer’s symptoms. Three patients with the disease had a Medtronic deep brain stimulator implanted, with leads reaching into the frontal lobe where a lot of advanced cognitive tasks are done.
Following initiation of therapy, the researchers monitored the three patients for over three years, gauging their cognitive abilities throughout. Amazingly, all of the patients’ cognitive decline was markedly slowed as compared to typical Alzheimer’s patients.
Here’s a summary of the findings of the study from the abstract in Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease:
AD participants given DBS for at least 18 months at the VC/VS target were compared on the Clinical Dementia Rating–Sum of Boxes (CDR-SB), our primary outcome clinical measure, to matched groups without DBS from the AD Neuroimaging Initiative (ADNI) cohort. Serial 2-Deoxy-2-[18F]fluoro-D-glucose (FDG) positron emission tomography (PET) images of AD participants were also compared longitudinally over time. Three AD DBS participants were matched to subjects from the ADNI cohort. All participants tolerated DBS well without significant adverse events. All three AD DBS participants had less performance decline and two of them meaningfully less decline over time on our primary outcome measure, CDR-SB, relative to matched comparison groups from the ADNI using score trajectory slopes. Minimal changes or increased metabolism on FDG-PET were seen in frontal cortical regions after chronic DBS at the VC/VS target. The first use of DBS in AD at a frontal lobe behavior regulation target (VC/VS) was well-tolerated and revealed less performance decline in CDR-SB
Here’s a video report on one of the study participants from Ohio State University:
Study in Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease: Deep Brain Stimulation of Frontal Lobe Networks to Treat Alzheimer’s Disease…
Via: The Ohio State