Navigation Links
Drug Found to Create New Connections in Brain, Restoring and Improving Memory

Family of Drugs Could Repair Brain Damage and Treat Alzheimer's Disease

MORGANTOWN, W.Va., Dec. 4 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Scientists at the Blanchette Rockefeller Neurosciences Institute (BRNI) have discovered that a cancer drug - Bryostatin - enhances the formation of new connections in rat brains during memory storage. This drug could potentially increase normal memory capacity in humans as well as repair and restore memory lost from Alzheimer's disease, stroke and head trauma.

In an article to be published in the December 4 issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), BRNI Scientific Director Daniel Alkon, M.D., and Jarin Hongpaisan, Ph.D., describe how the cancer drug Bryostatin stimulates the production of connections between neurons in the same structural way that memory storage does naturally. Bryostatin essentially rewires the brain.

"There have been no effective drugs to promote brain repair," Dr. Alkon said. "Bryostatin and other BRNI drugs in this class could introduce a whole new era for brain repair. At the same time, we are now closer to understanding what controls the growth of synaptic connections in the adult brain."

The BRNI research shows that a healthy brain normally undergoes some "rewiring" when it stores memories. Bryostatin enhances this rewiring in normal healthy brains and also creates new connections in brains that have been ravaged by Alzheimer's disease, stroke or head trauma.

Alkon and Hongpaisan used high-powered electron microscopes to directly visualize these synaptic connections between neurons. They also used molecular markers to label these connections to confirm the synaptogenesis induced by memory and Bryostatin.

"Diseases like Alzheimer's actually destroy synapses in the human brain. There is still no recognized cure," said Dr. Alkon. "In our animal studies with Bryostatin, damaged brains repaired synaptic connections of cells that were ruined from disease, giving the brain more capacity for memory. If this result is applicable to humans, this could be life-changing for Alzheimer's patients."

In previous BRNI studies, Bryostatin was found to markedly increase survival of mice with human Alzheimer's genes, decrease the production of the toxic Alzheimer's protein called A Beta, and increase the production of the healthy proteins from human cells.

Bryostatin also shows the ability to accelerate the production of synapses when paired with learning exercises. According to Dr. Alkon, this could eventually lead to new treatment therapies for children with compromised memory activity.

In 2004, BRNI received patent protection for the use of Bryostatin - originally developed as a cancer drug - to treat Alzheimer's disease. BRNI is preparing now for the first clinical trials of Bryostatin for the treatment of neurological disorders. Clinical trials will test whether Bryostatin's promising preclinical results generalize to humans.

BRNI is the world's only non-profit institute dedicated to the study of both human memory and diseases of memory. Its primary mission is to accelerate neurological discoveries from the lab, including diagnostic tools and treatments, to the clinic where it can benefit patients who suffer from neurological and psychiatric diseases.

BRNI is operated in alliance with West Virginia University in Morgantown as well as in collaboration with other academic institutions such as Johns Hopkins University. West Virginia Senator Jay Rockefeller founded the Institute in memory of his mother, Blanchette Hooker Rockefeller, who died of Alzheimer's disease.

The full article is available at beginning December 4.

SOURCE Blanchette Rockefeller Neurosciences Institute
Copyright©2007 PR Newswire.
All rights reserved

Related medicine news :

1. One Species Genome Found Within Another
2. National Patient Safety Foundation Partners with Vocera Communications
3. R. P. Simmons Family Foundation Pledges $2 Million for New Childrens Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC Campus
4. Super Jake Foundation Offers Hope for Pediatric Cancer
5. The American Liver Foundation Appoints Rick Smith, a Twenty-Year Veteran of The MS Society, as Chief Executive Officer
6. Patient Advocate Foundation Launches Program to Help Uninsured Virginians with Chronic, Debilitating and Life-Threatening Illness Access Quality Healthcare
7. AIDS Healthcare Foundation Applauds City Commissioners Support of Diversity, Urges Call for Mayors Resignation
8. National Osteoporosis Foundation Teams Up With Ladies Home Journal Magazine to Launch a 10-city Mall Walk Tour
9. Judge Rules That Florida Disease Management Program Serving 8,000 HIV/AIDS Patients Should Be Re-bid, Says AIDS Healthcare Foundation
10. The Tug McGraw Foundation Announces 2007 Fundraising Gala
11. The Arthur M. Blank Family Foundation Pushes for Pre-K Expansion in Georgia
Post Your Comments:
(Date:6/26/2016)... Aliso Viejo, California (PRWEB) , ... June 26, 2016 , ... ... for Final Cut Pro X. , "Film editors can give their videos a whole ... artistically," said Christina Austin - CEO of Pixel Film Studios. , ProSlice Levels ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... June 25, 2016 , ... Experts ... applications at AcademyHealth’s Annual Research Meeting June 26-28, 2016, at the Hynes Convention ... health care topics including advance care planning, healthcare costs and patient and family ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... 25, 2016 , ... First Choice Emergency Room , the largest network ... the Medical Director of its new Mesquite-Samuell Farm facility. , “We are pleased ... location,” said Dr. James M. Muzzarelli, Executive Medical Director of First Choice Emergency Room. ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... June 25, 2016 , ... Conventional wisdom preaches the benefits ... terms of the latter, setting the bar too high can result in disappointment, perhaps ... slow progress toward their goal. , Research from reveals that ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... , ... Marcy was in a crisis. Her son James, eight, was out of control. Prone ... physically. , “When something upset him, he couldn’t control his emotions,” remembers Marcy. “If ... at my other children and say he was going to kill them. If we ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)... June 23, 2016 Capricor ... ), a biotechnology company focused on the discovery, ... that patient enrollment in its ongoing randomized HOPE-Duchenne ... exceeded 50% of its 24-patient target. Capricor expects ... third quarter of 2016, and to report top ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... , June 23, 2016  Astellas today announced the establishment of Astellas Farma Colombia (AFC), a new affiliate with ... Latin America . ... ... ... ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... 2016  Experian Health, the healthcare industry ... patient payment and care experience, today announced ... and services that will enhance the breadth ... These award-winning solutions will enable healthcare professionals ... in an ever-changing environment and redefine front-office ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: