Rapid improvement in verbal fluency and aphasia following perispinal etanercept in Alzheimer's disease Recent clinical studies point to rapid and sustained clinical, cognitive, and behavioral improvement in both Alzheimer's disease and primary progressive aphasia following weekly perispinal administration of etanercept, a TNF-alpha inhibitor that acts by blocking the binding of this cytokine to its receptors. This outcome is concordant with recent basic science studies suggesting that TNF-alpha functions in vivo as a gliotransmitter that regulates synaptic function in the brain. We hypothesized that perispinal etanercept had the potential to improve verbal function in Alzheimer's disease, so we included several standarized measures of verbal ability to evaluate language skills in a clinical trial of perispinal etanercept for Alzheimer's disease. ... This was a prospective, single-center, open-label, pilot study, in which 12 patients with mild-to-severe Alzheimer's disease were administered etanercept, 25–50 mg, weekly by perispinal administration for six months. Two additional case studies are presented.