tACS for Amyloid-β Reduction in Alzheimer's Disease


Alzheimer's Disease (AD) is characterized by amyloid-? (A?) plaque buildup and phosphorylated tau (p-tau) in the brain, as well as widespread neurodegeneration. The evidence suggests that both amyloid and tau play a critical role in AD and interventions that reliably and safely decrease the intracerebral burden of amyloid or tau could potentially be of marked clinical importance. Currently, therapeutic options are very limited and while there are pharmacologic interventions that transiently improve cognitive function, there are no treatments that alter disease progression. The current study seeks to use a novel therapeutic intervention that uses noninvasive brain stimulation to target amyloid in the brain. The investigators anticipate this will decrease the amyloid levels in the brain, as evidence by Positron Emission Tomography (PET) imaging.

Study Start Date

November, 01 2017

Estimated Completion Date

November 2018


  • Device: Transcranial Alternating Current Stimulation (tACS)

Study ID

Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center -- 2017P000373



Trial ID


Study Type


Trial Phase


Enrollment Quota



Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center

Inclusion Criteria

  • Clinical Diagnosis of mild AD defined by: Clinical Dementia Rating (CDR) = 0.5-1, Mini Mental State Examination (MMSE) >/= 20, Demonstration or history of memory impairments
  • Amyloid positive PET imaging
  • At least 45 years old
  • On a stable dose of medications for memory loss including cholinesterase inhibitors (e.g. donepezil, rivastigmine or memantine) as defined as 6 consecutive weeks of treatment at an unchanging dose
  • Intelligence Quotient (IQ) > 85 as determined by the Wechsler Test of Adult Reading (WTAR) and no history of intellectual disability

Exclusion Criteria

  • Current history of poorly controlled migraines including chronic medication for migraine prevention
  • Current or past history of any neurological disorder other than dementia, such as epilepsy, stroke, progressive neurologic disease (e.g. multiple sclerosis) or intracranial brain lesions
  • and history of previous neurosurgery or head trauma that resulted in residual neurologic impairment.
  • Past or current history of major depression, bipolar disorder or psychotic disorders, or any other major psychiatric condition.
  • Contraindication for undergoing MRI or receiving Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) or tACS, • History of fainting spells of unknown or undetermined etiology that might constitute seizures.
  • History of seizures, diagnosis of epilepsy, history of abnormal (epileptiform) EEG or immediate (1st degree relative) family history of epilepsy
  • with the exception of a single seizure of benign etiology (e.g. febrile seizure) in the judgment of the investigator.
  • Chronic (particularly) uncontrolled medical conditions that may cause a medical emergency in case of a provoked seizure (cardiac malformation, cardiac dysrhythmia, asthma, etc.).
  • Metal implants (excluding dental fillings) or devices such as pacemaker, medication pump, nerve stimulator, Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulator (TENS) unit, ventriculo-peritoneal shunt, cochlear implant, unless cleared by the study MD.
  • Substance abuse or dependence within the past six months.
  • Medications will be reviewed by the responsible MD and a decision about inclusion will be made based on the following: The patient's past medical history, drug dose, history of recent medication changes or duration of treatment, and combination of Central Nervous System (CNS) active drugs.
  • All female participants that are pre-menopausal will be required to have a pregnancy test
  • any participant who is pregnant will not be enrolled in the study.
  • BMI > 40 kg/m2. We will limit the BMI to <40 kg/m2 because of weight limits of the scanner bed and width limits of the MRI.
  • Subjects who, in the investigator's opinion, might not be suitable for the study
  • A hair style or head dress that prevents electrode contact with the scalp or would interfere with the stimulation (for example: thick braids, hair weave, afro, wig)




45 Years and older

Accepts Healthy Volunteers


Study Locations and Contact Information (1)

Study Location Distance Name Phone Email
Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center - Boston, Massachusetts 2.4 miles Rachel Paciorek 617-667-9088 rpaciore@bidmc.harvard.edu

ClinicalTrialsLocator.com provides clinical trial listings in an easy to view format. All clinical trial information is pulled directly from ClinicalTrials.gov. This website does not guarantee acceptance into any clinical trial, and is not responsible for adverse events that may be incurred from a clinical trial.