Japanese pharmaceutical company Eisai announced today that. the country’s Ministry of Health has approved. the use of the drug “Leqembi” for the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease. which was developed by Eisai in collaboration with the US-based company Biogen.
This comes after a committee affiliated with .the Ministry of Health recommended the approval of the drug in August. following its approval by the US Food and Drug Administration in July.
This drug is the first treatment proven to slow .the progression of Alzheimer’s disease. in its early stages.
However, regulatory authorities in .the United States have ordered a warning label on the drug indicating .the risk of serious brain swelling. similar to other Alzheimer’s drugs in the same class.
An executive at Eisai said in August that. the company expects to start marketing. Leqembi in Japan within about 60 days of regulatory approval.
What You Should Know About the New Drug
The drug is called “Leqembi.” also known as “Lecanemab.”
“Leqembi” comprises its active ingredient .and is administered to patients intravenously once every two weeks.
Preliminary trial data for Leqembi were published in September. showing that the drug slowed cognitive decline. in Alzheimer’s patients by 27% over an 18-month period.
The drug was developed by .the Japanese company Eisai .and the American company Biogen.
How It Works
“Leqembi” targets the brain protein “beta-amyloid.” which is believed to be one of .the main causes of Alzheimer‘s disease.
Amyloid plaques accumulate around the nerve cells of Alzheimer‘s patients .and gradually destroy them. leading to memory loss.
Other drugs so far have only targeted .the gradual symptoms of the disease.
“Leqembi” has been approved for people .with mild cognitive impairment or early-stage Alzheimer’s disease.
The drug is administered intravenously every two weeks. and experts recommend regular brain scans to monitor .any side effects.