Long-term effects of phosphatidylserine, pyritinol, and cognitive training in Alzheimer's disease. A neuropsychological, EEG, and PET investigation

Dementia. 1994 Mar-Apr;5(2):88-98. doi: 10.1159/000106702.


70 patients with probable Alzheimer's disease were randomly allocated to four groups: 17 patients received only social support, 18 cognitive training twice a week, in 17 cognitive training was combined with pyritinol 2 x 600 mg/day and in 18 cognitive training was combined with phosphatidylserine 2 x 200 mg/day. Treatment duration was 6 months. Before and after treatment, the patients underwent neuropsychological testing as well as measurement of the regional cerebral metabolic rate for glucose using positron emission tomography and 18F-2-fluoro-2-deoxy-D-glucose. Before treatment the groups were comparable in respect to resting and activated glucose pattern achieved by a visual recognition task. Electrophysiological changes were assessed as EEG power, globally and in 4 frequency bands. This 6-month study in four groups of patients with Alzheimer's disease indicated that phosphatidylserine treatment has an effect on different measures of brain function. Since neuropsychological improvements were best documented after 8 and 16 weeks and faded towards the end of the treatment period, it must be concluded that this symptomatic therapy is mainly of short-term benefit and was overcome by the progressive pathological changes at the end of the treatment period.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Comparative Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Alzheimer Disease / physiopathology
  • Alzheimer Disease / psychology
  • Alzheimer Disease / therapy*
  • Brain / metabolism
  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy*
  • Electroencephalography
  • Female
  • Glucose / metabolism
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neuropsychological Tests
  • Phosphatidylserines / therapeutic use*
  • Pyrithioxin / therapeutic use*
  • Time Factors
  • Tomography, Emission-Computed


  • Phosphatidylserines
  • Pyrithioxin
  • Glucose