Roche, GE Healthcare to collaborate on innovative Alzheimer treatments

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Roche, a healthcare group focused on pharmaceuticals and diagnostics, and GE Healthcare (GEHC) have announced a collaboration to develop new innovative treatments for Alzheimer's disease using both medical equipment and pharmaceuticals. 

As part of the collaboration, patients taking a Roche anti-amyloid drug candidate for Alzheimer's disease in controlled clinical trials will be monitored for drug response. The responses will be measured using GE's positron emission tomography (PET) diagnostic imaging agent.

GE's proprietary PET technology measures and tracks levels of beta-amyloid which is a form of brain plaque which is believed to likely cause memory loss in Alzheimer's patients.  This is a considerable advance because previously the presence of plaque could only be confirmed during autopsy.

Both companies will analyze patient data independent of one another in order to monitor the progression of the disease. The data will then be shared to validate the efficacy of both the therapeutic product and the diagnostic tool. Also, the data collected will aid both companies in submitting necessary data to regulatory authorities for approvals.

Financial terms of the agreement have not been disclosed.