Navigation Links
Paradoxical Alzheimer's finding may shed new light on memory loss

March 8, 2008 Do you remember the seventh song that played on your radio on the way to work yesterday? Most of us dont, thanks to a normal forgetting process that is constantly cleaning house culling inconsequential information from our brains. Researchers at the Buck Institute now believe that this normal memory loss is hyper-activated in Alzheimers disease (AD) and that this effect is key to the profound memory loss associated with the incurable neurodegenerative disorder.

Last year, this same group of researchers found that they could completely prevent Alzheimers disease in mice genetically engineered with a human Alzheimers geneMouzheimersby blocking a single site of cleavage of one molecule, called APP for amyloid precursor protein. Normally, this site on APP is attacked by molecular scissors called caspases, but blocking that process prevented the disease. Now they have studied human brain tissue and found that, just as expected, patients suffering from AD clearly show more of this cleavage process than people of the same age who do not have the disease. However, when they extended their studies to much younger people without Alzheimers disease, they were astonished to find an apparent paradox: these younger people displayed as much as ten times the amount of the same cleavage event as the AD patients. The researchers now believe they know why.

The Buck Institute study implicates a biochemical switch associated with that cleavage of APP, causing AD brains to become stuck in the process of breaking memories, and points to AD as a syndrome affecting the plasticity or malleability of the brain. The study, due to be published in the March 7 issue of the Journal of Alzheimers Disease, provides new insight into a molecular event resulting in decreased brain plasticity, a central feature of AD.

Young brains operate like Ferraris shifting between forward and reverse, making and breaking memories with a facility that surpasses that of older brains, which are less plastic, said Dale Bredesen, MD, Buck Institute faculty member and leader of the research group. We believe that in aging brains, AD occurs when the molecular shifting switch gets stuck in the reverse position, throwing the balance of making and breaking memories seriously off kilter.

In previous research, lead author Veronica Galvan, PhD, prevented this cleavage in mice genetically engineered to develop the amyloid plaques and deposits associated with AD. These surprising mice had normal memories and showed no signs of brain shrinkage or nerve cell damage, despite the fact that their brains were loaded with the sticky A-beta plaques that are otherwise associated with Alzheimers disease.

A-beta is produced throughout the brain throughout life; we believe that it is a normal regulator of the synapses, the connections between neurons, said Galvan, who added that AD, like cancer, is a disease in which imbalanced cell signaling plays an important role.

The fact that many people develop A-beta plaques yet show no symptoms of AD tells us that the downstream signaling of A-betanot just A-beta itselfis critical, said Bredesen, and these pathways can be targeted therapeutically. Simply put, we can restore the balance. Continuing research at the Buck Institute focuses on nerve signaling and efforts to disconnect the molecular mechanism that throws memory-making in the reverse direction, as well as understanding mechanisms that support brain cell connections that are crucial to the process of memory making.


Contact: Kris Rebillot
IOS Press

Related medicine news :

1. Alzheimers Research Target May Be a Dead End
2. MHA to Release Findings of Independent Long Term Care Member Study
3. New findings about the brain lead to treatment for eating disturbances
4. New Findings Support Alternatives to Pap Test
5. DNA Findings Reveal Genetic History of Humans
6. New findings on emerging contaminants
7. Research findings may lead to new ways to study and fight diabetes
8. A Sneak Peek Into the Special Needs Home of Tomorrow - Renowned Autism Consultant Valerie Herskowitz to Present Latest Findings at Autism Through the Lifespan Conference February 14-17 in Orlando
9. New findings contradict a prevailing belief about the inner ear
10. NeoStrata Clinical Findings Reveal Benefits of Combining Glycolic Acid Peels and Targeted Home Care With Microdermabrasion for Optimized Treatment of Photodamaged Skin
11. New finding may help explain development of preeclampsia
Post Your Comments:
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... 13, 2017 , ... “The Journey: From the Mountains to the Mission Field”: ... souls in the Philippines. “The Journey: From the Mountains to the Mission Field” is ... Bible. She has taught all ages and currently teaches a class of ladies at ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... 2017 , ... Planet Fitness, one of the largest and fastest growing franchisors ... a flagship location in Covington, LA at 401 N. U.S. Highway 190, in January ... Office Depot in the Holiday Square shopping center. Its location allows it to serve ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... 2017 , ... Asante, a nationally recognized health system in ... existing home health joint venture through an agreement, effective October 1, 2017, to ... home health company with Asante, delivering clinically integrated care, for the past eight ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... Washington, D.C. (PRWEB) , ... October 12, 2017 , ... ... of their peers in Washington, D.C., for the 49th Congress of the International ... Ph.D ., Vice President of the Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... October 12, 2017 , ... ... in property taxes a year. In some states—like New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts, ... contrast, many overseas retirement havens have extremely low property-tax rates, which contributes to ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:9/18/2017)... , Pa. and KALAMAZOO, Mich. , Sept. ... Penn. , and OptiMed Specialty Pharmacy of ... partnership to offer a strategic hub service that expedites ... highly sought-after personal spirometer, Spiro PD 2.0, and wellness ... A spirometer is a medical device used to measure ...
(Date:9/12/2017)... YORK , Sept. 12, 2017   EcoVadis , the leading ... has published the first annual edition of its Global CSR Risk and ... companies evaluated by EcoVadis, based on Scorecard Ratings that analyzed nearly 800,000 ... ... Index ...
(Date:9/9/2017)... Sept. 8, 2017 ... MRI Unit coming to Washington DC ... When: Tuesday, September 12 th – Monday, September 18 th ... offering free MRI brain scans to the public.Where:  ... parked at 501 K Street NW, Washington, D.C.What:BTF brings its nationwide initiative, ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: