Brivaracetam, an experimental antiepileptic, may be promising as a treatment for Alzheimer’s disease, a new study published in Alzheimer’s Research & Therapy has found.

Earlier studies have tested the effects of levetiracetam in both animal models and in humans with early signs of Alzheimer’s disease and have shown that it may slow symptoms of the disease like memory loss. Researchers from the University of British Columbia (UBC) tested the effects of brivaracetam, an investigational antiepileptic that is 10 times more potent than levetiracetam. The study showed that the drug completely reversed memory loss in rodent models of Alzheimer’s disease.

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It is not clear how brivaracetam works in reversing memory loss. Dr. Haakon Nygaard, the Fipke Professor in Alzheimer’s Research in UBC’s Faculty of Medicine, noted that this study reflects very preliminary data in regards to treating patients with Alzheimer’s disease. Larger clinical studies will be needed before determining if antiepileptics will be a part of future Alzheimer’s disease therapy.

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