Navigation Links
Plaques, Tangles in Brain Don't Always Lead to Alzheimer's
Date:5/27/2009

Study raises questions about possible link

WEDNESDAY, May 27 (HealthDay News) -- New British research provides more evidence that the bits of gunk in the brain known as plaques and tangles don't necessarily lead to Alzheimer's disease, as many experts have long believed.

In fact, the study found that many people over the age of 75 had signs of significant clogging in their brains but still managed to avoid senility.

The findings don't have immediate ramifications for the treatment of Alzheimer's disease, which remains incurable and only somewhat treatable. But in conjunction with other studies, they could redirect ongoing research, said Dr. Gary Kennedy, director of the division of geriatric psychiatry at Montefiore Medical Center in New York City.

"A lot of what is out there that's focusing on reducing the formation of amyloid plaques and tangles may just be off the mark," Kennedy said.

Amyloid plaques are globs of protein that form outside brain cells and stick together. Tangles are bits of protein that develop inside brain cells and create havoc of their own. Both have been linked to Alzheimer's disease.

In the new study, British researchers examined the brains of 456 people who had donated their bodies to science. The subjects were 69 to 103 years old when they died.

The findings appear in the May 28 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

The team found a strong link between clogging in the brain and Alzheimer's in 75-year-olds, but the connection lessened by the time people were 95.

In other words, plaques and tangles developed in very old people just as in their younger counterparts, but the very old weren't as likely to develop Alzheimer's.

The picture is not perfectly clear, however. "At all ages, there are some people who don't become demented before they died -- despite having a lot of plaques and tangles," said study co-author Dr. Paul Ince. "We do not know what would have happened if they had survived."

It's possible that Alzheimer's disease shortens life, so people who are susceptible to it simply don't make it into the older age group, reasoned Ince, a professor of neuropathology and head of the Academic Unit of Pathology at Sheffield University Medical School in the U.K.

Also, he added, the study suggests that people who become senile at a very old age may be affected by another factor -- shrinking of the brain.

As for future research, "we need to take account of the ability of some people's brains to withstand Alzheimer's better than others," he said. "If we knew why, it might help us with strategies to delay the onset of dementia."

For now, doctors are very limited in how they can treat Alzheimer's, Kennedy said. Medications can treat symptoms, much as painkillers help some people tolerate arthritis, but they don't cure the disease, he said.

And in many cases, the drugs simply don't work, he said.

More information

To learn more, try the Alzheimer's Association.



SOURCES: Gary Kennedy, M.D., director, division of geriatric psychiatry, Montefiore Medical Center, New York City; Paul Ince, M.D., professor, neuropathology, and head, Academic Unit of Pathology, Sheffield University Medical School, U.K.; May 28, 2009, New England Journal of Medicine


'/>"/>
Copyright©2009 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. Fewer Brain Tangles May Mean Smarter Old Age
2. Researchers find first conclusive evidence of Alzheimers-like brain tangles in nonhuman primates
3. Vaccine Stops Alzheimers Brain Tangles
4. Singing brains offers epilepsy and schizophrenia clues
5. Games for Health Conference Announces First Cognitive Health Track Powered by SharpBrains
6. Fear Response May Stem From Protein in Brain
7. Cocaine Spurs Long-Term Change in Brain Chemistry
8. Brain Scans Show How Humans Hear Emotion
9. Bonnie Hunt, Melina Kanakaredes and Dr. Ruth Westheimer Lend Their Support to Childrens Brain Tumor Foundation Benefit
10. Man Dies of Brain Inflammation Caused by Deer Tick Virus
11. UCLA study shows traumatic brain injury haunts children for years
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Plaques, Tangles in Brain Don't Always Lead to Alzheimer's
(Date:2/13/2016)... ... 13, 2016 , ... Christie Medical Holdings, Inc. presented the ... VeinViewer® Vision vein finder for the nursing school simulation lab. This ... draw blood, combining technology with traditional technique. , “VeinViewer is a wonderful new ...
(Date:2/13/2016)... ... February 13, 2016 , ... DDi , a ... Providers list for its expertise in eClinical Solutions. DDi has built its solution ... technology needs of global clients. DDi provides smarter technology for Clinical Development, Regulatory ...
(Date:2/12/2016)... ... February 12, 2016 , ... The law firm of Morrow, Morrow, Ryan & ... purpose of these scholarships is to encourage applicants to pursue a degree in their ... these two parishes. , “We have available jobs in St. Landry and Evangeline ...
(Date:2/12/2016)... ... February 12, 2016 , ... CDRH Enforcement Trends: , Back to the Future , Feb. ... , As Winston Churchill said, “Those who don’t learn from history are doomed to repeat ... when they come knocking this year. But that takes time. , Take a close ...
(Date:2/12/2016)... Angeles, CA (PRWEB) , ... February 12, 2016 , ... ... With a hectic schedule, a demanding job, and no time to decompress, Rabinowitz found ... she dedicated herself to meditation for its impact on her life, implementing a 20-minute-per-day ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:2/12/2016)...  Eli Lilly and Company (NYSE: LLY ) today ... disodium) vitamin regimen patent would not presently be infringed by ... , Italy and ... with dextrose solution.  --> ... Appeal held that Lilly,s patent would be indirectly infringed by ...
(Date:2/12/2016)... 12 2016  OMS Supply, a large provider of ... announced today the recent launching of their new company ... of features that enhance the user experience and enable ... --> --> Despite ... company that started in early 2016, they have already ...
(Date:2/12/2016)... LOUISVILLE, Ky. , Feb. 12, 2016 ... it has completed a $47.1 million Series ... investors Cormorant Asset Management, Hillhouse Capital Group ... investors Morningside Venture Investments, AJU IB Investment, ... will be used to further advance clinical ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: