Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Less cognitive impairment seen in women taking drug for osteoporosis

07.04.2005


A drug prescribed for the prevention of osteoporosis reduced women’s risk of mild cognitive impairment by 33 percent in a worldwide clinical trial led by researchers at San Francisco VA Medical Center (SFVAMC).



The drug, raloxifene, modulates the activity of the hormone estrogen. The finding was published in the April 2005 issue of the American Journal of Psychiatry.

Mild cognitive impairment (MCI) affects more than one-third of women and one-fifth of men aged 65 and older. It reduces short-term memory and is associated with a significantly increased risk of Alzheimer’s disease.


"No other intervention has been proven to reduce the risk of mild cognitive impairment," says Kristine Yaffe, MD, the principal investigator of the trial. Yaffe is UCSF associate professor of psychiatry, neurology and epidemiology and chief of geriatric psychiatry at SFVAMC.

Raloxifene is one of the most broadly prescribed drugs for the treatment of osteoporosis (it is also used to treat breast cancer). It is manufactured by Eli Lilly, which sponsored the trial, called the Multiple Outcomes of Raloxifene Evaluation (MORE).

In the MORE trial, which took place at 180 clinical sites in 25 countries, 7,705 postmenopausal women with osteoporosis were randomly assigned to take a daily dose of either 120 milligrams of raloxifene, 60 milligrams of raloxifene, or a placebo for three years. Participants at 161 sites -- 7,023 women -- were measured for cognitive impairment at the beginning of the study and every year thereafter; cognitively impaired women were kept in the study.

Over the course of the trial, 1,637 women dropped out. At the end of the study, the remaining 5,386 were evaluated for dementia. In those women, the 120 milligram dose conferred a 33 percent lower risk of developing mild cognitive impairment when compared with the 60 milligram dose and with placebo. The 60 milligram dose offered no apparent prevention of cognitive impairment. While researchers also observed a reduced risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease, that reduction was of borderline statistical significance.

Like all drugs in its class, known as selective estrogen receptor modulators, raloxifene acts like an estrogen in some tissues and as an antiestrogen in others. The authors were unable from this study to determine the mechanism of action responsible for their finding, and whether the effect was due to the drug acting like an estrogen or an antiestrogen in the brain. However, they wrote, given that other studies have shown that estrogen reduces the risk of Alzheimer’s disease and cognitive impairment, it is most likely that raloxifene has an estrogen-like effect on the central nervous system. According to Yaffe, it is probable that because the preventive effect involves estrogen, a female hormone, the results of the study do not apply to men; however, the study has no data to support this.

People with MCI tend to retain critical thinking and reasoning skills, but experience significant short-term memory loss. For example, they may experience trouble remembering the names of people they meet or the flow of a conversation, or have an increased tendency to misplace things. Researchers said MCI is associated with a significantly higher-than-normal risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia: about 1 percent per year for unimpaired people versus 10 to 15 percent for those with MCI. For this reason, says Yaffe, it is important that additional studies should be conducted on the potential of raloxifene and other selective estrogen receptor modulators to prevent cognitive impairment, particularly in women at high risk.

The MORE trial’s primary objective was to determine the appropriate dose of raloxifene needed to prevent bone fractures and maintain mineral bone density. A secondary objective was to evaluate the drug’s effectiveness in preventing cognitive impairment. The 5,386 women who were screened for dementia completed the 15-item Geriatric Depression scale and six cognitive tests at the beginning of the trial and once a year during the trial. Their scores at the end were compared to their baseline scores, and women suspected of cognitive impairment or the more-serious cognitive problem of dementia were evaluated by clinical experts and referred for further treatment. Those with dementia were also given brain scans with computerized tomography or magnetic resonance imaging to aid in their diagnosis and treatment.

In future research, Yaffe plans to look at other selective estrogen receptor modulators and their effect on cognition, and to investigate whether raloxifene may reduce cognitive impairment among women at high risk.

Steve Tokar | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.ucsf.edu

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Chances to treat childhood dementia
24.07.2017 | Julius-Maximilians-Universität Würzburg

nachricht World first: Massive thrombosis removed during early pregnancy
20.07.2017 | Universitätsspital Bern

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Manipulating Electron Spins Without Loss of Information

Physicists have developed a new technique that uses electrical voltages to control the electron spin on a chip. The newly-developed method provides protection from spin decay, meaning that the contained information can be maintained and transmitted over comparatively large distances, as has been demonstrated by a team from the University of Basel’s Department of Physics and the Swiss Nanoscience Institute. The results have been published in Physical Review X.

For several years, researchers have been trying to use the spin of an electron to store and transmit information. The spin of each electron is always coupled...

Im Focus: The proton precisely weighted

What is the mass of a proton? Scientists from Germany and Japan successfully did an important step towards the most exact knowledge of this fundamental constant. By means of precision measurements on a single proton, they could improve the precision by a factor of three and also correct the existing value.

To determine the mass of a single proton still more accurate – a group of physicists led by Klaus Blaum and Sven Sturm of the Max Planck Institute for Nuclear...

Im Focus: On the way to a biological alternative

A bacterial enzyme enables reactions that open up alternatives to key industrial chemical processes

The research team of Prof. Dr. Oliver Einsle at the University of Freiburg's Institute of Biochemistry has long been exploring the functioning of nitrogenase....

Im Focus: The 1 trillion tonne iceberg

Larsen C Ice Shelf rift finally breaks through

A one trillion tonne iceberg - one of the biggest ever recorded -- has calved away from the Larsen C Ice Shelf in Antarctica, after a rift in the ice,...

Im Focus: Laser-cooled ions contribute to better understanding of friction

Physics supports biology: Researchers from PTB have developed a model system to investigate friction phenomena with atomic precision

Friction: what you want from car brakes, otherwise rather a nuisance. In any case, it is useful to know as precisely as possible how friction phenomena arise –...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Closing the Sustainability Circle: Protection of Food with Biobased Materials

21.07.2017 | Event News

»We are bringing Additive Manufacturing to SMEs«

19.07.2017 | Event News

The technology with a feel for feelings

12.07.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Chances to treat childhood dementia

24.07.2017 | Health and Medicine

Improved Performance thanks to Reduced Weight

24.07.2017 | Automotive Engineering

NASA looks to solar eclipse to help understand Earth's energy system

21.07.2017 | Earth Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>