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Alzheimer's disease - input of vitamin D with mEmantine assay (AD-IDEA trial): study protocol for a randomized controlled trial

Cédric Annweiler1*, Bruno Fantino1, Elsa Parot-Schinkel2, Samuel Thiery1, Jennifer Gautier1 and Olivier Beauchet1

Author Affiliations

1 Department of Neuroscience, Angers University Hospital; Angers University Memory Centre; UPRES EA 2646, University of Angers, UNAM, Angers, France

2 Clinical Research Centre, Angers University Hospital, Angers, France

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Trials 2011, 12:230  doi:10.1186/1745-6215-12-230

Published: 20 October 2011

Abstract

Background

Current treatments for Alzheimer's disease and related disorders (ADRD) are symptomatic and can only temporarily slow down ADRD. Future possibilities of care rely on multi-target drugs therapies that address simultaneously several pathophysiological processes leading to neurodegeneration. We hypothesized that the combination of memantine with vitamin D could be neuroprotective in ADRD, thereby limiting neuronal loss and cognitive decline. The aim of this trial is to compare the effect after 24 weeks of the oral intake of vitamin D3 (cholecalciferol) with the effect of a placebo on the change of cognitive performance in patients suffering from moderate ADRD and receiving memantine.

Methods

The AD-IDEA Trial is a unicentre, double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled, intent-to-treat, superiority trial. Patients aged 60 years and older presenting with moderate ADRD (i.e., Mini-Mental State Examination [MMSE] score between 10-20), hypovitaminosis D (i.e., serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D [25OHD] < 30 ng/mL), normocalcemia (i.e., serum calcium < 2.65 mmol/L) and receiving no antidementia treatment at time of inclusion are being recruited. All participants receive memantine 20 mg once daily -titrated in 5 mg increments over 4 weeks- and each one is randomized to one of the two treatment options: either cholecalciferol (one 100,000 IU drinking vial every 4 weeks) or placebo (administered at the same pace). One hundred and twenty participants are being recruited and treatment continues for 24 weeks. Primary outcome measure is change in cognitive performance using Alzheimer's Disease Assessment Scale-cognition score. Secondary outcomes are changes in other cognitive scores (MMSE, Frontal Assessment Battery, Trail Making Test parts A and B), change in functional performance (Activities of Daily Living scale, and 4-item Instrumental Activities of Daily Living scale), posture and gait (Timed Up & Go, Five Time Sit-to-Stand, spatio-temporal analysis of walking), as well as the between-groups comparison of compliance to treatment and tolerance. These outcomes are assessed at baseline, 12 and 24 weeks, together with the serum concentrations of 25OHD, calcium and parathyroid hormone.

Discussion

The combination of memantine plus vitamin D may represent a new multi-target therapeutic class for the treatment of ADRD. The AD-IDEA Trial seeks to provide evidence on its efficacy in limiting cognitive and functional declines in ADRD.

Trial Registration

ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT01409694

Keywords:
Alzheimer's disease; vitamin D; memantine; clinical trial; older adults