Search for Alzheimer's Treatment Is Dealt a Blow

Pfizer announced R&D on new drugs will cease
By Kate Seamons,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 8, 2018 10:40 AM CST
Pfizer to Stop Looking for New Alzheimer's Drugs
In this Nov. 23, 2015, file photo, a woman passes Pfizer's world headquarters in New York.   (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan, File)

The Alzheimer's Association estimates that more than 5 million Americans are living with the disease—and that by 2050, that count could triple. But Pfizer on Saturday announced it's getting out of the Alzheimer's game, at least when it comes to researching potential new drugs. The company will "re-allocate spend across our portfolio, to focus on those areas where our pipeline, and our scientific expertise, is strongest," it said in a statement picked up by Reuters.

Its previously significant investment in Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease research and development will cease, and 300 jobs will be cut as a result, reports Bloomberg. The Wall Street Journal notes the news follows one high-profile flop: Bapineuzumab showed early promise as an Alzheimer's drug but didn't pan out in subsequent trials and was abandoned in 2012. (More Alzheimer's disease stories.)

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