NEW YORK, Nov. 22, 2016 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Anavex Life Sciences Corp. ("Anavex" or the "Company") (Nasdaq:AVXL) today announced a positive 41-week update from its Phase 2a study in mild-to-moderate Alzheimer's disease (AD) patients for ANAVEX 2-73, which targets cellular homeostasis. At 41 weeks, Alzheimer's patients taking a daily oral dose of ANAVEX 2-73 in the exploratory, not yet dose optimized Phase 2a clinical trial, showed a stabilization of cognitive and functional measures. This data of stabilization is promising since Alzheimer's disease is a progressive disease where current therapeutics are only able to temporarily slow the worsening of dementia symptoms and not stop the disease from progressing. At 41 weeks, oral daily dosing between 10mg and 50mg, ANAVEX 2-73 was well tolerated, and no patients discontinued treatment due to adverse events. There were no clinically significant treatment-related adverse events, and no serious adverse events. Pre-specified exploratory analyses included the cognitive (MMSE) and the functional (ADCS-ADL) changes from baseline. A continued stabilization of both cognitive (MMSE) and functional (ADCS-ADL) measures in patients treated with ANAVEX 2-73 was observed. This correlation was positive with all measured scores (MMSE, ADCS-ADL, Cogstate, HAM-D and EEG/ERP). George Perry, PhD, Dean and Professor at the University of Texas at San Antonio and Editor-in Chief of the Journal of Alzheimer's Disease, commented, "Although this is an open label study with 32 patients, I have never seen mild-to-moderate Alzheimer's patients maintain near baseline cognitive and activities of daily living function and positive correlation with all other measures over a 41-week trial period in any prior study with an approved or experimental drug. It is quite plausible that complex CNS diseases like Alzheimer's may require a comprehensive approach, including restoration of cellular homeostasis." Published Alzheimer disease studies confirm substantial declines of both the cognitive (MMSE) and the functional (ADCS-ADL) measures over this timeframe in a similar AD population. In comparison to historical control from a pooled placebo arm cohort study conducted by the Alzheimer Disease Cooperative Study Group in mild-to-moderate AD patients of comparable ages and MMSE baselines, over nine months the ANAVEX 2-73 data shows a potential treatment benefit of several points on both the MMSE scale and on the ADCS-ADL score.