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Considering Prevagen – save your money instead.  Want to think like a jellyfish – take Prevagen.  Tiresome repetitious televised commercials somehow link brain health, clearer thinking and a sharper mind to an amino acid present in jellyfish.

This moderately expensive supplement at once claims to improve mental clarity while at the same moment noting “this product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.”

Studies supposedly demonstrating Prevagen’s benefits must be taken with the proverbial grain of salt.  These company sponsored “investigations” appear highly flawed, unscientific, unreliable and not published in any recognized peer review journal.  Apparently the company and its principals even played a dominant role in writing the papers.

Evidence supporting for Prevagen stems from the Madison Memory Study.  The company corralled a small group of adults from the community who claimed self-reported memory concerns.  After the relatively short study the authors concluded “…no statistically significant results were observed over the entire study population…”  Somehow this lack of effect morphed into the company’s incessant claims of benefit.

In the past, Quincy Bioscience, the company behind Prevagen, has failed to comply with Good Manufacturing Practices and as a result has run afoul of federal regulatory authorities.

Perhaps the most threatening issue for Quincy Bioscience relates to a federal lawsuit filed  against the company that also individually named two of the company’s principals – Mark Underwood and Michael Beaman.  This suit was filed in March, 2018 by the Federal Trade Commission and the People of the State of New York by its Attorney General.

The complaint charges Quincy Bioscience, Underwood and Beaman with “…violating the Federal Trade Commission Act and analogous law through false or unsubstantiated advertising claims…”

Medical experts seem unimpressed by Prevagen.  An investigator from an Alzheimer Institute in Arizona neither recommends the product nor believes any evidence substantiates its use.  The director of the Memory Clinic at the Madison Veterans Administration hospital suggests people concerned with their memory should opt instead for membership in a health club rather than purchasing Prevagen.

A neuroscientist at the University of Wisconsin-Madison mentions the idea of “quackery” while a physician at Columbia University claims the principles of brain science fail to indicate any role for apoaequorin – Prevagen’s major ingredient.

A group known as Truth in Advertising or TINA.org argues in a federal court lawsuit that Quincy Bioscience makes “false and unsubstantiated claims that (Prevagen) improves memory, provides cognitive benefits and has been shown to work.”

Bottom line – to maintain brain health: eat properly, exercise, avoid cigarettes and save money – forget Prevagen.

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