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Biogen Shares Gain On Midstage Results For Alzheimer's Candidate

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Biogen Shares Gain On Midstage Results For Alzheimer's Candidate
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Biogen Inc (NASDAQ: BIIB) shares, which ended Tuesday's session at a three-year high following a beat-and-raise second-quarter report, are experiencing continued momentum after a poster presentation on the company's Alzheimer's disease candidate co-developed with Japan's Eisai. 

Biogen shares were advancing 1.71 percent to $379.22 at the time of publication Wednesday. 

What Happened 

In a poster presentation at the 2018 Alzheimer's Association International Conference that was accepted as a late-breaking abstract, Biogen and Eisai presented detailed results from the Phase 2 study of the AD treatment candidate elenbecestat.

Elenbecestat is being tested for mild cognitive impairment as well as mild-to-moderate dementia due to AD.

The multicenter, double-blind, placebo-controlled 18-month study randomized 70 patients to four treatment arms; they were administered 5, 15, or 50 mg of elenbecestat or a placebo daily. 

Why It's Important

The primary objective of the study was to assess safety and tolerability after 18 months of treatment.

"The incidence of treatment-emergent adverse events was similar between elenbecestat and a placebo, and no dose-dependent response was observed for adverse events," Biogen said. 

The 50 mg arm showed a statistically significant reduction of brain amyloid load as compared to a placebo.

The elenbecestat arm showed a 31-percent slowing the rate of decline relative to a placebo after 18 months of treatment, according to a clinical assessment using the Clinical Dementia Rating Sum of Boxes, according to Biogen. 

What's Next

The company termed the study results as potentially clinically important.

"While the study was not powered to show statistical significance compared to placebo on clinical symptoms, the results suggest that elenbecestat could slow decline in cognitive function of patients with MCI due to Alzheimer's disease, or mild to moderate dementia due to Alzheimer's disease," Biogen said.

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