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Telmisartan to Prevent Alzheimer's in African Americans


This study is designed to determine if telmisartan (Micardis), an approved medication for high blood pressure, may help prevent Alzheimer's disease in African Americans, a group at relatively high risk for developing Alzheimer's.

Minimum Age Maximum Age Gender Healthy Volunteers
30 Years N/A Both No
April 2015
June 30, 2020

  • Treated high blood pressure (systolic blood pressure >100 mmHg and <200 mmHg)
  • Parent or biological family member with Alzheimer's disease
  • African American

  • Mean resting blood pressure >200 mmHg (systolic) or >110 mmHg (diastolic)
  • Participating in another investigational drug study
  • Past or current use of renin-angiotensin acting medication
  • Potassium >5.5 meq/dl at baseline; creatinine >1.99 mg/dl at baseline
  • History of stroke
  • Dementia
  • Baseline Montreal Cognitive Assessment score of <27
  • Contraindication for lumbar puncture or magnetic resonance imaging
  • Heart failure
  • Diabetes
  • Pregnant or nursing

This Phase I study will determine if the high blood pressure drug telmisartan affects cognition and biomarkers of Alzheimer's in African Americans. Blood pressure medications known as angiotensin-receptor blockers have been associated with reduced risk of Alzheimer's in Caucasians because they act on the renin-angiotensin system, a key regulator of blood pressure in the body and brain. These medications appear to slow the progression of Alzheimer's by affecting blood flow and plaque levels in the brain, but these benefits have not been tested in African Americans.

Participants will be randomly assigned to take 20 mg telmisartan, 40 mg telmisartan, or a placebo once a day for 8 months. Investigator will assess whether telmisartan influences the renin-angiotensin system in the brain and produces favorable effects on brain blood flow and enzymes that cause brain plaques in Alzheimer's disease. Participants will undergo cognitive and blood tests, a brain scan, and lumbar puncture.

Name City State Zip Status Primary Contact
Emory University
Atlanta Georgia 30322 Recruiting Whitney Wharton, PhD

Emory University

Name Role Affiliation
Whitney Whitney, PhD Principal Investigator Emory University

Name Phone Email
Whitney Wharton, PhD 404-712-7359


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