Naproxen and celecoxib do not prevent AD in early results from a randomized controlled trial

C. G. Lyketsos, John C.S. Breitner, R. C. Green, B. K. Martin, C. Meinert, Steven Piantadosi, M. Sabbagh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

249 Scopus citations


OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the efficacy and safety of naproxen and celecoxib for the primary prevention of Alzheimer disease (AD). METHODS: Randomized, placebo-controlled, double-masked clinical trial conducted at six US dementia research clinics. Volunteers aged 70+ years, with cognitive screening scores above designated cut-offs and a family history of AD, were randomly assigned to celecoxib 200 mg BID, naproxen sodium 220 mg BID, or placebo. Enrollment began in early 2001. The main outcome measure was diagnosis of AD after randomization. RESULTS: On December 17, 2004, treatments were suspended. Events while on treatment yielded hazard ratios vs placebo of 1.99 (95% CI 0.80 to 4.97; p = 0.14) for celecoxib and 2.35 (0.95 to 5.77; p = 0.06) for naproxen. Imperfect screening measures led to enrollment of 7 individuals with dementia and 46 others with milder cognitive syndromes. Their (prevalent) illness was detected at enrollment and diagnosed within 6 months following randomization. Secondary analyses that excluded the 7 cases of prevalent dementia showed increased hazard ratios for AD with both treatments. Neither treatment produced a notable effect on the incidence of milder cognitive syndromes. CONCLUSIONS: These results do not support the hypothesis that celecoxib or naproxen prevent Alzheimer dementia, at least within the early years after initiation of treatment. Masked long-term follow-up of these participants will be essential.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1800-1808
Number of pages9
Issue number21
StatePublished - May 2007

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology


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