An Anti-Oxidant Compound to Slow Progression of Alzheimer's Disease

Author(s): Stephen Post, Ph.D.

Previous studies indicate that vitamin E, also an anti-Oxidant, enables AD patients to live an estimated six months longer than a placebo group. These patients also had slightly better control of bodily functions (including bowel and bladder). This study will examine a new anti-Oxidant that may slow the progression of AD. In this study, patients/subjects are required to remain on this compound until death. Their longevity will be compared with a control group receiving a placebo.

Family members must agree to maintain anti-Oxidant use throughout all stages of the disease progression. Subjects are not allowed to take any cholinesterase inhibitors or other anti-dementia drugs during the study, which uses a placebo control.

Why might it not be ethical to require subjects to stay on this compound throughout the entire course of the disease, including the advanced stage?

What would be the therapeutic goals of slowing progression of the disease?

What do you think about the non-use of symptomatic anti-dementia drugs in subjects and controls?

From Discussion Scenarios for Group Mentoring in Responsible Research

Cite this page: "An Anti-Oxidant Compound to Slow Progression of Alzheimer's Disease" Online Ethics Center for Engineering 9/10/2006 National Academy of Engineering Accessed: Friday, April 25, 2014 <www.onlineethics.org/Resources/Cases/oxAD.aspx>