S. Thomas Carmichael, MD, PhD: FDA approvals may move UCLA brain cancer and Alzheimer’s treatments from bench to bedside

Stanley Carmichael Jr

"A personalized vaccine developed by UCLA Health scientists has been shown to potentially extend the life of patients with glioblastoma, the most aggressive form of brain cancer.

As the therapy awaits submission for approval to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, it is one of the latest examples of UCLA Health research moving from the bench to the bedside.

The results of two other clinical trials at UCLA could also soon provide new therapy options for patients with Alzheimer’s — a disease for which there is no cure and few treatments to manage symptoms. The FDA has granted “accelerated approval” for the amyloid-targeting drug lecanemab, which has been shown to moderately slow cognitive decline.

A similar drug, donanemab, showed promise in a phase 3 study.

“An institution like UCLA offers patients with progressive and ultimately life-ending diseases the opportunity to participate in trials that may benefit them, but the primary goal of any clinical trial is to provide benefit to others,” says S. Thomas Carmichael, MD, PhD, chair of the Department of Neurology at the David Geffen School of Medicine. “When the FDA approves a new therapy, that benefit becomes a reality.”"

Read more at UCLA Health.