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Viagra Could be Used to Treat Alzheimer’s Disease

Viagra could be a useful treatment against Alzheimer’s disease. Alzheimer’s disease affects hundreds of millions of people worldwide. Despite mounting numbers of cases, however, there is currently no effective treatment. The findings were published in Nature Aging

Researchers using the gene mapping network at the Cleveland Clinic integrated genetic and other data to determine which of more than 1,600 Food and Drug Administration-approved drugs could be an effective treatment for Alzheimer’s disease. They gave higher scores to drugs that target both amyloid and tau – two hallmarks of Alzheimer’s – compared with drugs that targeted just one or the other.

Dr Feixiong Cheng, the study lead said that sildenafil, which has been shown to significantly improve cognition and memory in preclinical models, presented as the best drug candidate. Viagra is the brand name of sildenafil. Researchers then used a database of claims from more than 7 million people in the US to examine the relationship between sildenafil and Alzheimer’s disease outcomes by comparing sildenafil users to non-users.

They found sildenafil users were 69% less likely to develop Alzheimer’s disease than non-sildenafil users after six years of follow-up. The author of the study explored the drug’s potential effect on Alzheimer’s disease, developed a lab model that showed that sildenafil increased brain cell growth and targeted tau proteins, offering insights into how it might influence disease-related brain changes.He said that cheng cautioned that the study does not demonstrate a causal relationship between sildenafil and Alzhemer’s disease. Randomised clinical trials involving both sexes with a placebo control were needed to determine sildenafil’s efficacy.

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