A new study identifies a likely cause of rapid degeneration in some Alzheimer’s patients. The results of this study may lead to improved treatment.
But first, let’s look at the method used in this study, because that may be almost as important as a development. And for this, we will use a sports analogy.
Continue reading A genetic cause of rapid degeneration in some Alzheimer’s patients
Neurodegenerative diseases (i.e. Alzheimer’s and Huntington’s) often involves the formation of aggregates of proteins in a patients’ brain, correlated with the process of degeneration. Some of these proteins are unique to the specific disease and others are commonly found in healthy individuals but also occur intertwined with the disease-linked types. Until now, these “common proteins” were thought to be an effect of sampling the tissues and were ignored as background. A new paper out today in PLoS Biology suggests, however, that these protein aggregates may be linked to aging. The main reason to think this is that they are found more widely (in a phyologenetic sense) than previously expected … having been isolated in Caenorhabditis elegans, the laboratory classic roundworm model. And, in C. elegans, they seem to be linked to aging.
Continue reading Aggregate Proteins and Brain Aging: Interesting new findings