Navigation Links
Trio of Gene Variants Discovered That May Raise Alzheimer's Risk
Date:9/6/2009

Study suggests they're implicated in clearance of amyloid plaque from brain

SUNDAY, Sept. 6 (HealthDay News) -- Two international teams of scientists have uncovered three gene variants that up the risk for Alzheimer's disease, the most common form of dementia among the elderly and the seventh-leading cause of death in the United States.

Teams led by Dr. Philippe Amouyel of the Institut Pasteur de Lille in France, and Julie Williams, a professor of psychological medicine at Cardiff University School of Medicine in Wales, zeroed in on defects in the CLU, CR1 and PICALM genes, and also found another 13 gene variants that are solid candidates for further investigation, according to findings that appear in the Sept. 6 online issue of Nature Genetics. Until now, only four gene variants had previously been definitively associated with Alzheimer's -- APP, PS1, PS2 and APOE.

"Although the role of these two new genes [CLU and CR1] . . . is not yet known in detail, previous studies suggest that they may be involved in the elimination of the major component of amyloid plaques," explained Amouyel, the leader of the team that studied the CLU and CR1 genes. "Genetic variants at CLU, CR1 and APOE may influence susceptibility to late-onset forms of the disease."

According to Amouyel, one group of researchers carried out a two-stage analysis of genetic samples from more than 20,000 subjects. In parallel, Williams ran a similar study, discovering the PICALM gene mutations and independently discovering the CLU gene variants.

Most of the DNA samples came from France and other European countries, but U.S. labs contributed to Williams' study as well, including the National Institute on Aging (NIA) Laboratory of Neurogenetics, the Mayo Clinic and the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis.

"This is the most important finding in the genetic [component] of Alzheimer's in more than 10 years," said study co-author Alison Goate, a professor of genetics in psychiatry at Washington University School of Medicine and a member of the Alzheimer's Association Medical & Scientific Advisory Council.

Experts estimate that as many as 5.3 million Americans are living with Alzheimer's disease, which progressively kills brain cells. Alzheimer's typically attacks people over the age of 65. Symptoms include a range of cognitive, psychiatric and physical problems that eventually lead to death.

The sheer global impact of the illness and the lack of a cure were the driving forces behind the current research.

According to Amouyel, "the identification of these three genes has been possible, thanks to two major elements: first, the possibility to compare thousands of patients through a major collaboration between scientists; and second, the capacity to analyze genetic markers distributed all over the entire genome with high-tech tools, such as DNA chips."

Relatively little is known about how the newly discovered genes may increase the risk of Alzheimer's. But researchers have noted increased levels of CLU in the brains and cerebrospinal fluids of Alzheimer's patients. PICALM may play a role in the health of nerve cell synapses and may affect beta-amyloid deposits in the brain.

Each of the new genes probably contributes about 8 percent to an individual's risk of developing Alzheimer's, Goate said. In addition to genetic factors, there are likely to be environmental and lifestyle variables that also contribute to the risk, she noted.

"Identifying gene variants like CLU and PICALM advances our understanding of the many genetic factors that may contribute to overall risk for this devastating neurological disorder," Marcelle Morrison-Bogorad, associate director of NIA's neuroscience and neuropsychology of aging program, said in a statement. "This knowledge may then lead to novel disease pathways that can be targeted to develop new treatments."

In another genetic discovery reported in the same journal, Dutch researchers say they have found two new gene variants linked to amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), also known as Lou Gehrig's disease. The variants appear to play a role in the neural pathways that are involved in this deadly disease, which involves the steady loss of neurons that results in muscle atrophy, paralysis and, finally, death.

More information

The Alzheimer's Association has more on the disease.



SOURCE: Philippe Amouyel, M.D., Ph.D., Institut Pasteur de Lille, France; Alison Goate, professor, genetics in psychiatry, Washington University School of Medicine, and member, Medical & Scientific Advisory Council, Alzheimer's Association, Chicago; Sept. 6, 2009, Nature Genetics, online


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

Related medicine news :

1. Variants of umami taste receptor contribute to our individualized flavor worlds
2. MCG participating in national study to identify genetic variants in schizophrenia
3. Genetic variants predict recurrence of bladder cancer, patient survival
4. Mayo Clinic-led researchers confirm gene variants associated with the most common adult leukemia
5. Study IDs Gene Variants Tied to Sudden Cardiac Death
6. Biologist finds plant polymerases IV and V are really variants of Polymerase II
7. Genetic Variants Tied to Obesity
8. Newly found gene variants account for kidney diseases among African-Americans
9. Genetic variants associated with vitamin B12
10. Gene variants linked to metabolic syndrome and HDL cholesterol levels
11. Gene Variants Linked to Lung Cancer Identified
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Trio of Gene Variants Discovered That May Raise Alzheimer's Risk 
(Date:1/24/2017)... ... January 24, 2017 , ... “Speaking With God’s Voice”: ... God’s Voice” is the creation of published author, Louis A. Miraglia, a born-again believer, ... best to deliver God’s great, impactful Word. , “There is little doubt that ...
(Date:1/24/2017)... ... 24, 2017 , ... “Mysteries Revealed On Speaking In Tongues”: an engaging ... to all Christians. “Mysteries Revealed On Speaking In Tongues” is the creation of published ... talk show located in Michigan. , “We need to partner with Jesus and ...
(Date:1/24/2017)... ... January 23, 2017 , ... ... house-caliber protein and espresso drink, announced its CLICK® Coffee Protein Drink is now ... Coffee Protein Drink Mix has become popular among health-conscious consumers who love coffee ...
(Date:1/24/2017)... Utah (PRWEB) , ... January 23, 2017 , ... The ... now) features a three-year outcome study on how outdoor behavioral healthcare (OBH) – also ... of distress and interpersonal difficulties while experiencing an increased sense of purpose both during ...
(Date:1/24/2017)... ... January 23, 2017 , ... Somnoware, a leading provider of ... centers to automatically connect and initialize all their devices with one click. This ... quickly installed on first use and then monitors device changes automatically. With this ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:1/24/2017)... Jan. 23, 2017 The global peripheral I.V. ... and it is expected to grow at a CAGR ... segment accounted for larger share in the global market ... various end users, the hospital segment accounted for the ... year. The global peripheral I.V. catheter market is witnessing ...
(Date:1/23/2017)... DUBLIN , Jan. 23, 2017 Endo ... Federal Trade Commission (FTC) today filed a joint motion ... of California seeking the entry ... Stipulated Order resolves all disputes between the FTC and ... into in connection with its Opana® ER and Lidoderm® ...
(Date:1/23/2017)... YORK , Jan. 23, 2017 MouthWatch LLC ... Camera was ranked as the best intraoral camera on ... taking the #2 spot overall. The #1 product was the ... said the MouthWatch intraoral camera was "…incredibly popular because it ... the camera has a small sticker price, it doesn,t sacrifice ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: