Neuropschiatric Research Center – Neuronal Nicotinic Receptors (NNRs) Present New Target for Treatment of Brain Disorders ABT-089 Now in National Trial to Test Benefits for Alzheimer’s Disease

Neuropsychiatric Research Center of Southwest Florida logo

Contact: Janet Henderson 828/883-4888 or

Neuronal Nicotinic Receptors (NNRs) Present New Target for Treatment of Brain Disorders ABT-089 Now in National Trial to Test Benefits for Alzheimer’s Disease

FT. MYERS, FL – Scientists are now targeting neuronal nicotinic receptors (NNRs), found on nerve cells throughout the central nervous system, for treatment of a number of neurological and psychiatric disorders.  Selective compounds have been developed to activate NNRs in order to stimulate the release of several important neurotransmitters which have been shown to improve cognition in laboratory studies.  The brain relies on these neurotransmitters (chemicals such as dopamine and acetylcholine), to enable nerve cells to communicate with one another.  Abbott researchers are now developing NNR compounds, including investigational medication ABT-089, for the potential treatment of Alzheimer’s disease.  

“At Abbott, we’ve been studying NNRs for more than a decade, and we are hopeful that this innovative research will lead to important advances in the treatment of cognitive disorders that disrupt the lives of patients and their families,” said Mario Saltarelli, M.D., Ph.D., divisional vice president, Neuroscience Development, Abbott. 

ABT-089 is now being evaluated for its safety and effectiveness in Alzheimer’s disease, a progressive and devastating brain disorder that destroys the capacity to remember, reason, communicate, and perform routine tasks.  In Alzheimer’s disease, nerve cells lose the ability to communicate with one another and eventually die.  Developed by Abbott, ABT-089 is designed to activate NNRs in the brain in an effort to restore proper chemical signaling in brain regions damaged by the disease.  Testing of the effects of ABT-089 on cognitive function in Alzheimer’s patients is currently underway.

“Clinical trials are crucial to finding new and better ways to treat and prevent Alzheimer’s disease, “ said Dr. Frederick Schaerf, M.D., of Neuropsychiatric Associates, an independent medical research company headquartered in Ft. Myers, Florida.  “The effects of Alzheimer’s disease can be devastating to patients and their families, and this study offers patients the opportunity to help evaluate the potential of ABT-089, an investigational medication being studied for this disease.”

Neuropsychiatric Research Center is currently enrolling Alzheimer’s patients for a 12-week phase II study of ABT-089. The ideal study participant has been diagnosed with mild to moderate Alzheimer’s disease and has been on Alzheimer’s medication for at least three months. After the 12-week study, participants have the option to openly receive ABT-089 as part of a long-term extension study. Families of people with Alzheimer’s disease are encouraged to visit or call 239-243-9982 to contact the clinic. There is no cost to the study participants or their families, and transportation can be arranged. 

Complimentary memory screenings are also available at this clinic location to evaluate anyone with concerns regarding memory loss or possible Alzheimer’s disease.

Neuropsychiatric Research Center was founded in 2001 to establish, develop and maintain a high quality clinical research program in Neuropsychiatry, concentrating on central nervous system studies.  Frederick W. Schaerf, M.D., Ph.D., director and founder, is a Board Certified Neuropsychiatrist with over 25 years of experience in pharmaceutical research.  Neuropsychiatric Research Center conducts Phase II, III and IV outpatient clinical trials in the following areas: anxiety disorders, chronic pain, memory disorders (Alzheimer’s disease, mild cognitive impairment, age associated memory impairment), mood disorders (depression, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia), attention deficit hyperactivity disorders (ADHD), premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD), osteoporosis, obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), social phobias, headache and numerous other areas in general medicine.  Located at 14271 Metropolis Avenue in Fort Myers, Florida, Neuropsychiatric Research Center can be reached at 239-939-7777.  

#    #    #

Office Phone: 828.883.4888 | Mobile: 813.992.7758 | email:
copyright © 2005 Janet Henderson | website by: Tricycle Studios