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AD/PD 2024 | Revisiting BACE inhibitors: the potential of BACE1 for delaying Alzheimer’s onset

Robert Vassar, PhD, Feinberg School of Medicine, Northwestern University, Chicago, IL, provides insight into the potential of beta-site amyloid precursor protein cleaving enzyme 1 (BACE1) inhibitors in the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease (AD). BACE1 is the beta secretase enzyme that initiates the production of toxic amyloid beta (Aβ) peptides that form amyloid plaques in AD. Despite successful Phase I and II trials, BACE inhibitors were discontinued in Phase III due to the occurrence of cognitive adverse events at higher doses. However, Dr Vassar believes a safe dose of BACE inhibitors could lower Aβ and avoid cognitive side effects, delaying AD onset over time. Alternatively, after clearing Aβ with immunotherapy, a low BACE inhibitor dose could prevent plaque reappearance. Dr Vassar advocates for reconsidering BACE inhibitors’ potential in Alzheimer’s treatment, emphasizing their targeted approach to combat the disease. This interview took place at the AD/PD™ 2024 congress in Lisbon, Portugal.

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