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Patients and their families may see hope in the news that the Food and Drug Administration has approved a drug to slow the pace of Alzheimer’s disease. Aducanumab is the first medicine authorized to treat what might be an underlying cause of the disease: amyloid beta clumps that accumulate in the brain.

Yet the evidence from clinical trials that this drug reduces Alzheimer’s is incomplete; it may be only minimally effective, if it works at all. The FDA’s own expert panel strongly objected to the drug’s approval.

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