Huperzine-A response to cognitive impairment and task switching deficits in patients with Alzheimer's disease.
J Chin Med Assoc. 2018 Sep 7. Epub 2018 Sep 7. PMID: 30201189
BACKGROUND: Alzheimer's Disease (AD) is associated with cognitive decline due to various pathological mechanisms. There are several acetylcholinesterase inhibitor compounds which can improve cognition, but Huperzine-A is a natural sesquiterpene alkaloid extracted from Chinese herb (Huperzia Serrata) which has rapid action.
METHODS: Double blind study was conducted. Participants included 50 patients with AD and 50 healthy individuals. Patients were recruited from Civil and BV hospital Bahawalpur and Nishter hospital Multan, Pakistan during May 2017 until February 2018 who were stable on Huperzine-A medication. Patients were tested twice. First, at the time of diagnosis to determine baseline scores. Second, post eight weeks of Huperzine-A treatment. Healthy individuals had single testing session. Participants completed Addenbrooke's Cognitive Examination and Trail Making Test.
RESULTS: Patients with AD showed cognitive and task switching deficits in contrast with healthy individuals. There was significant improvement in cognition and task switching abilities post Huperzine-A treatment compared with baseline performance.
CONCLUSION: Huperzine-A is effective in reducing cognitive and task switching deficits in patients with AD.