Navigation Links
A new strategy required in the search for Alzheimer's drugs?
Date:5/24/2013

In the search for medication against Alzheimer's disease, scientists have focused among other factors on drugs that can break down Amyloid beta (A-beta). After all, it is the accumulation of A-beta that causes the known plaques in the brains of Alzheimer's patients. Starting point for the formation of A-beta is APP. Alessia Soldano and Bassem Hassan (VIB/KU Leuven) were the first to unravel the function of APPL the fruit-fly version of APP in the brain of healthy fruit flies.

Alessia Soldano (VIB/KU Leuven): "We have discovered that APPL ensures that brain cells form a good network. We now have to ask ourselves the question whether this function of APPL is also relevant to Alzheimer's disease."

Bassem Hassan (VIB/KU Leuven): "Since we show that APP and APPL show similar activities in cultured cells, we suspect that APP in the human brain functions in the same manner as APPL in the brain of fruit flies. Hopefully we can use this to ask and eventually answer the question whether A-beta or APP itself is the better target for new drugs."

Plaques in the brain: cause or effect

The brain of a person with Alzheimer's disease is very recognizable due to the so-called plaques. A plaque is an accumulation of proteins that are primarily made up of Amyloid beta (A-beta), a small structure that splits off from the Amyloid Precursor Protein (APP). We have been dreaming for a long time of a drug that can break down A-beta, but we should be asking ourselves whether this is really the best strategy. After all, it is not yet clear whether the plaques are a cause or effect of Alzheimer's disease. In order to answer this question, it is important to determine the function of APP in healthy brains.

Optimum communication between brain cells

Alessia Soldano and Bassem Hassan study APPL, the fruit-fly version of APP. APPL is found throughout the fruit-fly brain, but primarily in the so-called alpha-beta neurons that are vital to learning processes and memory. The alpha-beta neurons must form functional axons for optimum functioning. Axons are tendrils projecting from the neuron, which are essential for communication between neurons. The VIB scientists had previously shown that APPL is important for memory in flies. Now, they have discovered that in the developing brain of a fruit fly APPL ensures that the axons are long enough and grow in the correct direction. APPL is therefore essential in the formation of a good network of neurons. The question is whether or not it is a good strategy to target a protein with such an important function in the brain in order to combat Alzheimer's disease.


'/>"/>

Contact: Sooike Stoops
sooike.stoops@vib.be
32-924-46611
VIB (the Flanders Institute for Biotechnology)
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. President, CEO Leppävuori, VTT: Finland should create a national bioeconomy strategy
2. Antitoxin strategy may help target other pathogens
3. Can you hear me now? New strategy discovered to prevent hearing loss
4. An economical, effective and biocompatible gene therapy strategy promotes cardiac repair
5. Coppers previously unknown exit strategy
6. New gene therapy strategy boosts levels of deficient protein in Friedreichs ataxia
7. US Navy defends renewable fuels strategy in Industrial Biotechnology Journal
8. Scientists uncover strategy able to dramatically reduce chemotherapys side effects
9. Limiting TV time -- Effective strategy for preventing weight gain in children
10. Rare cliffhanging plant species uses unique reproductive strategy
11. Texas Biomed files patent for a novel HIV vaccine strategy
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:2/7/2017)... LONG BEACH, New York , February 7, 2017 ... formerly known as ID Global Solutions Corporation [OTC: IDGS], ... identification, identity management and electronic transaction processing services, is ... a reorganization of the Company. Effective January ... Chairman of the Board of Directors, CEO and President. ...
(Date:2/2/2017)... , Feb. 2, 2017  EyeLock LLC, a market ... new white paper " What You Should Know About ... of ensuring user authenticity is a growing concern. In ... of users. However, traditional authentication schemes such as username/password ... Biometric authentication offers an elegant solution to the ...
(Date:1/26/2017)... 2017  Crossmatch, a leading provider of security and ... at combatting fraud, waste and abuse in assistance operations ... Action on Disaster Relief conference in Panama ... agencies and foreign assistance organizations throughout Latin ... are a largely unacknowledged problem in the foreign assistance ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:2/23/2017)... ... 23, 2017 , ... Brain Sentinel, Inc. has received US ... System, the Brain Sentinel® Seizure Monitoring and Alerting System. The adjunctive seizure monitoring ... of rest. A lightweight, non-invasive monitor is placed on the belly of the ...
(Date:2/23/2017)... ... February 23, 2017 , ... The Greater Gift Initiative, Inc , ... Compass Research . GGI's mission is to advance global health and highlight the ... need in honor of each clinical trial volunteer. The vision of GGI is to ...
(Date:2/23/2017)... , ... February 22, 2017 , ... ... photonics , have been named Fellows of the Society this year, the Fellows ... in the multidisciplinary fields of optics, photonics, and imaging as well as their ...
(Date:2/22/2017)...  PrimeVax Immuno-Oncology, Inc. announced today its CEO, ... Biocom Global Life Science Partnering Conference.  The presentation will ... the Torrey Pines Lodge, in San Diego.  ... who have chosen our company, amongst numerous others, to ... and clinical researchers," said Mr. Chen. "In contrast to ...
Breaking Biology Technology: