There are major breakthroughs coming soon to the world of brain diseases. This is welcome news to many suffering from – or know someone who is suffering from – a major brain-related problem.
A recent article ‘Brain Boom‘ talks about how the pharmaceutical industry is making a push into the brain disease arena. Long story short, various breakthroughs are closer than others but we’re on the path. Here’s the low-down:
#1) Depression [Most Promising]
Things are looking quite good right now for getting a better hold on treating depression. There are fast-acting drugs that are in late-stage trials and a lot of innovation happening in this area. Expect faster-acting drugs that will take a fraction of the time to show results. The solutions vary but most are in pill or inhalant form.
#2) Multiple Sclerosis [Promising]
Like the depression treatments, there is good progress on drugs that could do everything up to reversing the disease. This is a potentially huge breakthrough we’ll be watching closely. Why is there such ‘good’ news on this front? Because discoveries have been made on the root cause (an overactive immune system). Look for any story about how potential drugs reverse nerve damage. That’ll be a big step and win for fighting this brutal disease.
#3) Parkinson’s Disease [Good]
This one is farther off than the first two. Look for advances in Parkinson’s to take at least a few more years. We are currently treating the symptoms (shaking and loss of coordination) and not the root cause. Most drugs currently in development have seen sever side effects. One of the main companies to keep an eye on is Biogen Idec right now. They’re also making strides in treating Multiple Sclerosis.
#4) Schizophrenia [Moderate]
This is a tough one to treat and is likely going to take quite awhile. This is due to the nature of the brain disease and the array of symptoms that present. Basically, we’re treating the symptoms and not the root cause. Worth watching is Intra-Cellular Therapies who is developing a method of treating from the inside out (of neurons).
#5) Alzheimer’s [Fair]
This is a tough one to write. We are still very far from major solutions to Alzheimer’s Disease. We treat the symptoms and make life comfortable right now. As comfortable as can be, that is. So far, the approach has been to fight the buildup of plaque in the brain. New approaches are underway, though.
In summary, keep a close eye on news about each of these major brain diseases. They affect just about every family at one point or another so it’ll be crucial to keep the conversation going and to stay informed.