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A Randomized, Controlled Trial of Doxycycline and Rifampin for Patients with Alzheimer's Disease *

Objectives: To assess whether doxycycline and rifampin have a therapeutic role in patients with Alzheimer's disease (AD).

Design: Randomized, triple-blind, controlled trial.

Setting: Three tertiary care and two community geriatric clinics in Canada.

Participants: One hundred one patients with probable AD and mild to moderate dementia.

Intervention: Oral daily doses of doxycycline 200 mg and rifampin 300 mg for 3 months.

Measurements: The primary outcome was a change in Standardized Alzheimer's Disease Assessment Scale cognitive subscale (SADAScog) at 6 months. Secondary outcomes were changes in the SADAScog at 12 months and tests of dysfunctional behavior, depression, and functional status.

Results: There was significantly less decline in the SADAScog score at 6 months in the antibiotic group than in the placebo group, (−2.75 points, 95% confidence interval (CI)=−5.28 to −0.22, P=.034). At 12 months, the difference between groups in the SADAScog was −4.31 points (95% CI=−9.17–0.56, P=.079). The antibiotic group showed significantly less dysfunctional behavior at 3 months. There was no significant difference in adverse events between groups (P=.34). There were no differences in Chlamydia pneumoniae detection using polymerase chain reaction or antibodies (immunoglobulin (Ig)G or IgA) between groups.

Conclusion: Therapy with doxycycline and rifampin may have a therapeutic role in patients with mild to moderate AD. The mechanism is unlikely to be due to their effect on C. pneumoniae. More research is needed to investigate these agents.

* Legal Disclaimer: Chelation and Hyperbaric Therapy, Stem Cell Therapy, and other treatments and modalities mentioned or referred to in this web site are medical techniques that may or may not be considered “mainstream”. As with any medical treatment, results will vary among individuals, and there is no implication or guarantee that you will heal or achieve the same outcome as patients herein.

As with any procedure, there could be pain or other substantial risks involved. These concerns should be discussed with your health care provider prior to any treatment so that you have proper informed consent and understand that there are no guarantees to healing.

THE INFORMATION IN THIS WEBSITE IS OFFERED FOR GENERAL EDUCATIONAL PURPOSES ONLY AND DOES NOT IMPLY OR GIVE MEDICAL ADVICE. No Doctor/Patient relationship shall be deemed to have arisen simply by reading the information contained on these pages, and you should consult with your personal physician/care giver regarding your medical treatment before undergoing any sort of treatment or therapy.

Published on 11-24-2008
Authors: Mark B. Loeb, MD, MSc *†‡ , D. William Molloy, MD § , Marek Smieja, MD, PhD *†‡ , Tim Standish § , Charles H. Goldsmith, PhD †, Jim Mahony, PhD *‡ , Stephanie Smith § , Michael Borrie, MD ? , Earl Decoteau, MD ¶ , Warren Davidson, MD # Allan Mcdougall, MD ** , Judy Gnarpe, PhD ††, Martin O.donnell, MD § , and Max Chernesky, PhD *‡
Source: Journal of the American Geriatrics Society