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Therapies & Treatments – Helping Patients Live Better Lives

Neurodegenerative Diseases
Neurodegenerative diseases are disorders characterized by the progressive degeneration of the structure and function of the nervous system. (Photo credit: Andrew Bret Wallis / The Image Bank / Getty Images)
(Photo credit: Andrew Bret Wallis / The Image Bank / Getty Images)

Neurodegenerative diseases are disorders characterized by the progressive degeneration of the structure and function of the nervous system. Neurodegenerative diseases affect the body’s activities such as balance, movement, talking, breathing and even heart function. Many are genetic, but some are caused by an underlying medical condition. Common neurodegenerative diseases include Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, Huntington’s, muscular dystrophy, Lou Gehrig’s and multiple sclerosis.

Patient Stories 
A fitness trainer strives to keep his mother’s mind limber: https://www.novartis.com/stories/patient-perspectives/fitness-trainer-strives-keep-his-mothers-mind-limber
Living with the unknowns of Alzheimer’s disease:Search for this story on https://www.abbvie.com/

Examples of Common Treatments Developed With Animal Models

DrugUsageAnimal Models
CarbidopaDopamine promoter, Parkinson's diseaseDogs, mice, monkeys, rabbits, rats
DonepezilCognition-enhancing medication, Alzheimer's diseaseLemurs, mice, monkeys, rabbits, rats
GalantamineCognition-enhancing medication, dementiaDogs, mice, monkeys, rabbits, rats
LevodopaDopamine promoter, Parkinson's diseaseDogs, mice, monkeys, rabbits, rats
MemantineCognition-enhancing medication, dementia associated with Alzheimer's diseaseDogs, hamsters, lemurs, mice, monkeys, rabbits, rats
PramipexoleDopamine promoter, Parkinson's disease, restless leg syndrome Dogs, mice, mini pigs, monkeys, rabbits, rats
RisdiplamSpinal muscular atrophyMice, rats, rabbits, monkeys
RivastigmineCognition-enhancing medication, dementiaDogs, hamsters, mice, monkeys, rabbits, rats, minipigs
RopiniroleDopamine promoter, Parkinson's disease, restless leg syndromeDogs, mice, monkeys, rabbits, rats
TetrabenazineInvoluntary movement reducer, movement disorder (chorea) caused by Huntington's diseaseDogs, hamsters, mice, monkeys, rabbits, rats
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