Navigation Links
Researchers find first conclusive evidence of Alzheimer's-like brain tangles in nonhuman primates
Date:5/14/2008

Researchers at the Yerkes National Primate Research Center, Emory University, have discovered the first conclusive evidence of Alzheimer's-like neurofibrillary brain tangles in an aged nonhuman primate. The unprecedented finding, described in the online issue of the Journal of Comparative Neurology, has the potential to move the scientific community one step closer to understanding why age-related neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer's disease, are uniquely human and seem to never fully manifest in other species--including our closest evolutionary relative, the chimpanzee.

Lead researchers Rebecca Rosen, a doctoral student who is conducting her research at Yerkes, and Lary Walker, PhD, a neuroscientist and research professor at Yerkes, in collaboration with colleagues at UCLA, made the unanticipated finding during a routine post-mortem study of an aged, female chimpanzee that died of natural causes. The researchers also discovered deposits of beta-amyloid protein in plaques and blood vessels of the chimp's brain tissue, although these changes were infrequent compared to Alzheimer's disease in humans.

"We've seen these plaques in aged chimpanzees before, but this is the first time researchers have found both hallmark features of Alzheimer's disease--plaques and neurofibrillary tangles--in a nonhuman primate," explains Walker.

As many as five million Americans are living with Alzheimer's disease, the most common form of dementia. A cure has eluded researchers, and the disease is considered progressive and fatal. Brain plaques and tangles associated with the disease are prime suspects in damaging and killing nerve cells that cause memory loss and dementia.

"Alzheimer's disease has a huge number of potential causes," says Rosen. "By studying the development of human features of the disease that occur naturally in nonhuman primates, we may be able to isolate what makes people so susceptible to neurodegenerative disease and identify targets for therapeutics."

The research reported in the Journal of Comparative Neurology is just one of the projects at Yerkes aimed at uncovering underlying mechanisms and pathogenesis of Alzheimer's disease. Walker is evaluating the immune response of squirrel monkeys to a vaccine targeting beta-amyloid protein. The goal is to see if the vaccine prompts the immune system to make antibodies against the protein without side effects. In another study, Rosen is looking at the structure of beta-amyloid protein in multiple primate species with the hope of identifying the correct target for new drugs and immunotherapy.

Rosen noted Yerkes has provided her with unparalleled access to resources for graduate-level research and training. Added Walker, "Yerkes is one of the only facilities in the world that offers researchers the resources to study chimpanzees across the entire lifespan, including behavior, biochemistry, physiology, molecular biology and disease pathology."

For more than seven decades, the Yerkes National Primate Research Center, Emory University, has been dedicated to conducting essential basic science and translational research to advance scientific understanding and to improve the health and well-being of humans and nonhuman primates. Today, the center, as one of only eight National Institutes of Healthfunded national primate research centers, provides leadership, training and resources to foster scientific creativity, collaboration and discoveries. Yerkes-based research is grounded in scientific integrity, expert knowledge, respect for colleagues, an open exchange of ideas and compassionate, quality animal care.

Within the fields of microbiology and immunology, neuroscience, psychobiology and sensory-motor systems, the center's research programs are seeking ways to: develop vaccines for infectious and noninfectious diseases, such as AIDS and Alzheimer's disease; treat cocaine addiction; interpret brain activity through imaging; increase understanding of progressive illnesses such as Parkinson's and Alzheimer's; unlock the secrets of memory; determine behavioral effects of hormone replacement therapy; address vision disorders; and advance knowledge about the evolutionary links between biology and behavior.


'/>"/>

Contact: Emily Rios
erios@emory.edu
404-727-7732
Emory University
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Vancouver researchers discover missing link between TB bacteria and humans
2. 1 of the best researchers in general practice
3. Researchers fine-tune clot-busting treatment for bleeding in brain
4. OHSU Cancer Institute researchers pinpoint how smoking causes cancer
5. Yerkes researchers find link between psychological stress and overeating
6. Researchers who helped millions with arthritis receive prestigious Janssen Award
7. Carnegie Mellon engineering researchers automate analysis of protein patterns
8. Health researchers in McGill network receive $35.5 million in CIHR funding
9. Hopkins researchers discover new link to schizophrenia
10. Researchers find gene location that gives rise to neuroblastoma, an aggressive childhood cancer
11. Researchers Find Gene Location That Gives Rise to Neuroblastoma, an Aggressive Childhood Cancer
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... ... Marcy was in a crisis. Her son James, eight, was out of control. Prone to ... , “When something upset him, he couldn’t control his emotions,” remembers Marcy. “If there ... my other children and say he was going to kill them. If we were ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... Global law firm Greenberg Traurig, P.A. announced that ... chosen by their peers for this recognition are considered among the top 2 percent ... special honors as members of this year’s Legal Elite Hall of Fame: Miami ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... Comfort Keepers® of San Diego, ... and the Road To Recovery® program to drive cancer patients to and from their ... to ensure the highest quality of life and ongoing independence. Getting to and ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... People across the U.S. are sharpening their pencils ... an essay contest in which patients and their families pay tribute to a genetic ... 2016 National Society of Genetic Counselors (NSGC) Annual Education Conference (AEC) this September. ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... York, NY (PRWEB) , ... June 24, 2016 ... ... publication Haute Living, is proud to recognize Dr. Barry M. Weintraub as a ... that “the most beautiful women in the world, and the most handsome men, ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)... , June 23, 2016 Research ... MEMS Devices Medical Market Analysis 2016 - Forecast to 2022" ... The report contains up to date financial data ... analysis. Assessment of major trends with potential impact on the ... analysis of market segmentation which comprises of sub markets, regional ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... , June 23, 2016 , ... on Thursday, July 7, 2016 , , , , LOCATION: ... , , , , EXPERT PANELISTS:  , , , ... Senior Industry Analyst, Christi Bird; Senior Industry Analyst, Divyaa Ravishankar and ... The global pharmaceutical industry is witnessing an exceptional era. ...
(Date:6/23/2016)...  Guerbet announced today that it has been named ... . One of 12 suppliers to receive ... support of Premier members through exceptional local customer service ... to lower costs. ... outstanding customer service from Premier," says Massimo Carrara ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: