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Memantine: An oral NMDA antagonist for the treatment of moderate-to-severe Alzheimer?s disease


Memantine (Namenda, Forest) is the newest medication to receive FDA approval for the treatment of Alzheimer?s disease and the first to be approved with a moderate-to-severe indication. All previously approved Alzheimer?s disease treatments belong to the cholinesterase inhibitor class and are approved with a mild-to-moderate indication. Memantine has been used for more than 10 years in Germany and features a novel mechanism of action: N-methyl-d-aspartate (NMDA) antagonism. It has been shown to be effective in double-blind, placebo-controlled trials as monotherapy and in combination therapy with the cholinesterase inhibitor donepezil in patients with moderate-to-severe Alzheimer?s disease.

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