The Handoff: Your Week in Neurology News – 6/1/2017

The Handoff is a weekly roundup of neurology news covering various developments in subspecialties, the pharmaceutical industry, and the overall state of health care as it affects neurologists.

— A twin study led by the NIH found that baby teeth in children with autism contain higher levels of toxic lead and less nutrients like zinc and manganese compared with children who do not have autism. 

— A single dose of post-surgical ketamine did not decrease delirium in older adults, according to study results published in The Lancet. 

— Abilities involved in executive function are not well-developed until well into the 20s, according to an NIH-funded study that evaluated impulse control in nearly 900 young people. 

— Biopsychosocial pain management is having a resurgence, but is it worth the time and money?

— Mid-trial data suggests that NLS Pharma AG’s ADHD drug mazindol, a non-stimulant that was previously approved for the treatment of obesity, may be as effective at reducing symptoms of ADHD as current stimulants. 

— A review of phase 2 trial data on bapineuzumab and solanezumab suggests there was no evidence to support the evaluation of the compounds in phase 3 clinical trials. 

— Despite poor outcomes in a phase 2 study of valbenazine for Tourette syndrome, Neurocrine plans to take another swing with a higher dose of the drug, which was recently approved for tardive dyskinesia.  

— Karl Deisseroth, MD, PhD, of Stanford University has been awarded the 4 million euro Fresenius Prize by the German Else Kroner Fresenius Foundation for his contributions to optogenetics and depression circuitry, among other accomplishments. 

— FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb, MD, has charged FDA staff to be more resolute in their actions to quell the opioid crisis. 

— A new report in line with the start of Alzheimer’s and Brain Awareness Month highlights the concerns and difficulties experienced in both Alzheimer’s patients and their caregivers.