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Biol Psychiatry. 2014 May 1;75(9):678-85. doi: 10.1016/j.biopsych.2013.08.010. Epub 2013 Sep 25.

Benzoate, a D-amino acid oxidase inhibitor, for the treatment of early-phase Alzheimer disease: a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial.

Author information

  • 1Institute of Clinical Medical Science, China Medical University, Taichung, Taiwan; Department of Psychiatry, Kaohsiung Chang Gung Memorial Hospital, Chang Gung University College of Medicine, Kaohsiung, Taiwan.
  • 2Institute of Clinical Medical Science, China Medical University, Taichung, Taiwan; Department of Psychiatry, Kaohsiung Chang Gung Memorial Hospital, Chang Gung University College of Medicine, Kaohsiung, Taiwan; Department of Neurology, Lin-Shin Hospital, Taichung, Taiwan.
  • 3Department of Mathematics, Tamkang University, Taipei, Taiwan.
  • 4Department of Psychiatry, Taichung Veterans General Hospital, Taichung, Taiwan.
  • 5Department of Mathematics, Tamkang University, Taipei, Taiwan; Department of Psychiatry, China Medical University Hospital, Taichung, Taiwan.
  • 6Department of Psychiatry, Harbor-UCLA Medical Center, Torrance, California.
  • 7Institute of Clinical Medical Science, China Medical University, Taichung, Taiwan; Department of Psychiatry, China Medical University Hospital, Taichung, Taiwan. Electronic address: hylane@gmail.com.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDAR)-mediated neurotransmission is vital for learning and memory. Hypofunction of NMDAR has been reported to play a role in the pathophysiology of Alzheimer disease (AD), particularly in the early phase. Enhancing NMDAR activation might be a novel treatment approach. One of the methods to enhance NMDAR activity is to raise the levels of NMDA coagonists by blocking their metabolism. This study examined the efficacy and safety of sodium benzoate, a D-amino acid oxidase inhibitor, for the treatment of amnestic mild cognitive impairment and mild AD.

METHODS:

We conducted a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial in four major medical centers in Taiwan. Sixty patients with amnestic mild cognitive impairment or mild AD were treated with 250-750 mg/day of sodium benzoate or placebo for 24 weeks. Alzheimer's Disease Assessment Scale-cognitive subscale (the primary outcome) and global function (assessed by Clinician Interview Based Impression of Change plus Caregiver Input) were measured every 8 weeks. Additional cognition composite was measured at baseline and endpoint.

RESULTS:

Sodium benzoate produced a better improvement than placebo in Alzheimer's Disease Assessment Scale-cognitive subscale (p = .0021, .0116, and .0031 at week 16, week 24, and endpoint, respectively), additional cognition composite (p = .007 at endpoint) and Clinician Interview Based Impression of Change plus Caregiver Input (p = .015, .016, and .012 at week 16, week 24, and endpoint, respectively). Sodium benzoate was well-tolerated without evident side-effects.

CONCLUSIONS:

Sodium benzoate substantially improved cognitive and overall functions in patients with early-phase AD. The preliminary results show promise for D-amino acid oxidase inhibition as a novel approach for early dementing processes.

Copyright © 2014 Society of Biological Psychiatry. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

KEYWORDS:

Alzheimer disease; D-amino acids oxidase (DAAO) inhibitor; N-methyl-D-aspartate; clinical trial; mild cognitive impairment; sodium benzoate

PMID:
24074637
[PubMed - in process]
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