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Atomoxetine and Huntington's Disease

2014-07-24 14:24:04 | BioPortfolio

Summary

The purpose of this research study is to evaluate the effect of atomoxetine (also known as Strattera) compared to placebo (inactive substance) on daily activities such as attention and focus, thinking ability and muscle movements in subjects with early HD and attention deficit disorder.

Description

No medications have been investigated to improve attention and executive functions in patients with Huntington's disease, despite the evidence that these cognitive domains can be abnormal even before motor symptom onset. Because cognitive symptoms are highly associated with functional disability, treatments aimed at improving cognitive functions would be of significant benefit to patients in the early stages of the disease. Atomoxetine is the ideal choice for such a trial. It has proven efficacy in adults with ADHD and it selectively targets norepinephrine and dopamine in the prefrontal cortex rather than in subcortical areas. This selectivity is an advantage for patients with HD, because motor side effects are less likely to be facilitated than with a psychostimulant. The present study is a feasibility study in which we propose to administer either 80 mg atomoxetine for 4 weeks or placebo to 20 patients with early HD and who also complain of mild cognitive symptoms. The groups will then crossover to the other condition (atomoxetine or placebo). Participants will be assessed on measures of ADHD symptoms and a sensitive battery of neuropsychological tests. Based on the shared neural circuitry in ADHD and HD, and the demonstrated effectiveness of atomoxetine on attention in adults with ADHD, improved performance on cognitive tests of attention and executive functions and on subjects' report of ADHD symptoms are expected in the atomoxetine treatment phase. No changes in motor status are predicted during the study.

Study Design

Allocation: Randomized, Control: Placebo Control, Endpoint Classification: Efficacy Study, Intervention Model: Crossover Assignment, Masking: Double Blind (Subject, Caregiver, Investigator, Outcomes Assessor), Primary Purpose: Treatment

Conditions

Huntington Disease

Intervention

atomoxetine

Location

The University of Iowa
Iowa City
Iowa
United States
52242

Status

Completed

Source

University of Iowa

Results (where available)

View Results

Links

Published on BioPortfolio: 2014-07-24T14:24:04-0400

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PubMed Articles [14346 Associated PubMed Articles listed on BioPortfolio]

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Medical and Biotech [MESH] Definitions

A biochemical phenomenon in which misfolded proteins aggregate either intra- or extracellularly. Triggered by factors such as MUTATION, POST-TRANSLATIONAL MODIFICATIONS, and environmental stress, it is generally associated with ALZHEIMER DISEASE; PARKINSON DISEASE; HUNTINGTON DISEASE; and TYPE 2 DIABETES MELLITUS.

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A familial disorder inherited as an autosomal dominant trait and characterized by the onset of progressive CHOREA and DEMENTIA in the fourth or fifth decade of life. Common initial manifestations include paranoia; poor impulse control; DEPRESSION; HALLUCINATIONS; and DELUSIONS. Eventually intellectual impairment; loss of fine motor control; ATHETOSIS; and diffuse chorea involving axial and limb musculature develops, leading to a vegetative state within 10-15 years of disease onset. The juvenile variant has a more fulminant course including SEIZURES; ATAXIA; dementia; and chorea. (From Adams et al., Principles of Neurology, 6th ed, pp1060-4)

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