Alzheimer’s Disease Workshop White Paper Now Available


Key Points

  • In June, the Foundation held a workshop to assess the state of the field and develop a roadmap for using focused ultrasound to treat Alzheimer’s disease.
  • The presentations, discussion, and action items have now been summarized in a white paper. 
Focused Ultrasound for Alzheimer's Disease Workshop 12-13 June 2023

In June, the Foundation hosted a hybrid workshop to discuss the state of the field and current challenges for using focused ultrasound to treat Alzheimer’s disease (AD). More than 30 experts – including some who were new to focused ultrasound – convened to share their research and discuss issues that hinder growth in the field.  

Attendees discussed the following five burning questions:   

  1. What focused ultrasound parameters should be employed for clinical trials?   
  1. What therapeutics should be considered in conjunction with focused ultrasound blood-brain barrier opening (BBBO) for AD?  
  1. Should focused ultrasound BBBO alone be further considered as a treatment option for AD?  
  1. What outcome measures should be standardized?  
  1. What should the inclusion and exclusion criteria be for upcoming studies?  

Presentation topics included the clinical landscape for AD, the state of the field of focused ultrasound preclinical research for AD, focused ultrasound parameters, and potential combinations of therapeutics and BBBO. Experts also led panel discussions on standardizing outcome measures, optimizing inclusion and exclusion criteria for upcoming clinical trials, and creating a roadmap to move the field forward. 

The presentations and lively discussion throughout the one and a half day workshop have been summarized in a white paper

The community agreed on three important action items moving forward: 

  • Publish a consensus paper on focused ultrasound BBBO parameters and promote this as the reporting standard to compare studies more effectively. 
  • Investigate the microbubble landscape to ease availability, standardize reporting for microbubble usage, and work to optimize a focused ultrasound–specific microbubble. 
  • Pursue additional clinical trials in patients with AD that use larger treatment volumes and/or additional therapeutics. 

“The workshop brought experts in the field together to explore ways focused ultrasound can help these patients,” said Lauren Powlovich, MD, the Foundation’s associate chief medical officer. “We identified several unmet needs and gaps in evidence for focused ultrasound BBBO – with and without a therapeutic – as a treatment for AD. The Foundation will continue to prioritize the action items to keep the momentum moving forward.” 

See the White Paper