A device to treat Alzheimer’s Disease using radio waves has gone into clinical trials in Arizona. The trial is partially backed by science carried out in Connecticut.
Farmington-based inventor Eric Knight patented a device which delivers radio waves to the brains of Alzheimers sufferers. After the patent was issued he teamed up with the Alzheimer’s specialist, Dr. Gary Arendash, who carried out the basic research into the approach.
Now the two have launched a clinical trial involving a dozen patients at the Banner Institute in Phoenix.
"We're really proud to be working with one of the top facilities in America," said Knight. "This is exciting beyond words."
Patients in the trial will wear the device twice a day, an hour at a time over the two month period. They'll be given baseline cognitive tests before and after the trial.
A study in mice showed that the effects of dementia in Alzheimer's could be halted and even reversed with the technique.
Knight said the research should be able to prove basic efficacy and safety quickly.
"We’re hopeful that by springtime we will have a sense for how this is all working with the patients," he said. "Which is blazingly fast compared to traditional pharmaceutical medications in development and testing. So this is a kind of light speed, warp speed research that’s happening right now."
If the device is proved effective, it will go into more rounds of trials with a larger cohort of patients, perhaps at multiple sites.
The research is partially funded by cash from angel investors based in Connecticut.