Background: We previously investigated low doses (105 or 225 mg) of gantenerumab, a fully human monoclonal antibody that binds and removes aggregated amyloid-β by Fc receptor-mediated phagocytosis, in the SCarlet RoAD (SR) and Marguerite RoAD (MR) phase 3 trials. Several lines of evidence suggested that higher doses may be necessary to achieve clinical efficacy. We therefore designed a positron emission tomography (PET) substudy to evaluate the effect of gantenerumab uptitrated to 1200 mg every 4 weeks on amyloid-β plaques as measured using florbetapir PET in patients with prodromal to moderate Alzheimer's disease (AD). Methods: A subset of patients enrolled in the SR and MR studies who subsequently entered the open-label extensions (OLEs) were included in this substudy. Patients were aged 50 to 90 years with a clinical diagnosis of probable prodromal to moderate AD and were included based on a visual read of the original screening scan in the double-blind phase. Patients were assigned to 1 of 5 titration schedules (ranging from 2 to 10 months) with a target gantenerumab dose of 1200 mg every 4 weeks. The main endpoint of this substudy was change in amyloid-β plaque burden from OLE baseline to week 52 and week 104, assessed using florbetapir PET. Florbetapir global cortical signal was calculated using a prespecified standard uptake value ratio method converted to the Centiloid scale. Results: Sixty-seven of the 89 patients initially enrolled had ≥ 1 follow-up scan by August 15, 2018. Mean amyloid levels were reduced by 39 Centiloids by the first year and 59 Centiloids by year 2, a 3.5-times greater reduction than was seen after 2 years at 225 mg in SR. At years 1 and 2, 37% and 51% of patients, respectively, had amyloid-β plaque levels below the amyloid-β positivity threshold. Conclusion: Results from this exploratory interim analysis of the PET substudy suggest that gantenerumab doses up to 1200 mg resulted in robust amyloid-β plaque removal at 2 years. PET amyloid levels were consistent with sparse-to-no neuritic amyloid-β plaques in 51% of patients after 2 years of therapy. Amyloid reductions were similar to those observed in other placebo-controlled studies that have suggested potential clinical benefit. Trial registration: ClinicalTrials.gov, NCT01224106 (SCarlet RoAD) and NCT02051608 (Marguerite RoAD).
- Alzheimer's disease
- Amyloid-β plaque
- Disease-modification therapies
- Open-label extension
- Positron emission tomography