An update on huperzine A as a treatment for Alzheimer's disease

John T. Little, Sally Walsh, Paul S. Aisen

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

54 Scopus citations


Huperzine A is a natural cholinesterase inhibitor derived from the Chinese herb Huperzia serrata. There is evidence that huperzine A may compare favorably in symptomatic efficacy to cholinesterase inhibitors in use. In addition, huperzine A has antioxidant and neuroprotective properties that suggest that it may be useful as a disease-modifying treatment for Alzheimer's disease (AD). The drug is available as a nutriceutical in the US. However, there have been no published controlled clinical trials outside China assessing its toxicity and efficacy. This paper reviews the development of huperzine A as a treatment fof AD, including the Phase II trial now under way in the US.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)209-215
Number of pages7
JournalExpert Opinion on Investigational Drugs
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2008


  • Alzheimer's disease
  • Cholinesterase inhibitor
  • Dementia
  • Huperzine A
  • Neuroprotective

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology
  • Pharmacology (medical)


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