Navigation Links
Prions Prevent Alzheimers Disease

A role for prion proteins, the much debated agents of mad cow disease and vCJD, has been identified. It appears that the normal prions produced by the body help to prevent the plaques that build up in the brain to cause Alzheimers disease.

The possible function for the mysterious proteins was discovered by a team of scientists led by Medical Research Council funded scientist Professor Nigel Hooper of the University of Leeds.

Alzheimers and diseases like variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease follow similar patterns of disease progression and in some forms of prion disease share genetic features. These parallels prompted Professor Hoopers team to look for a link between the different conditions. They found an apparent role for normal prion proteins in preventing Alzheimers disease.

Our experiments have shown that the normal prion proteins found in brain cells reduce the formation of beta-amyloid, a protein that binds with others to build plaques in the brain that are found in Alzheimers disease, explains Professor Hooper.

He continues: In vCJD, the normal version of prion protein, PrPc, found naturally in the brain is corrupted by infectious prions to cause disease. The normal function of PrPc has been unclear.

Using cells grown in the lab, the team looked at the effect of high and low levels of normal prion protein on the successful formation of beta amyloid, the source of Alzheimers plaques. They found that beta amyloid did not form in cells with higher than usual levels of PrPc. In comparison, when the level of PrPc was low or absent, beta amyloid formation was found to go back up again.

Mice genetically engineered to lack PrPc were also studied. Again, this revealed that in its absence, the harmful beta-amyloid proteins were able to form. It appears that PrPc, the normal prion protein, exerts its beneficial effect by stopping an enzyme called beta-secretase from cutting up amyloid protei n into the smaller beta-amyloid fragments needed to build plaques.

Further evidence for the protective role of normal prion proteins is provided by mutated versions that are linked to genetic forms of prion disease because beta-amyloid fragments are able to form when the normal prion protein is corrupted by genetic mutation.

Professor Hooper concludes: Until now, the normal function of prion proteins has remained unclear, but our findings clearly identify a role for normal prion proteins in regulating the production of beta-amyloid and in doing so preventing formation of Alzheimers plaques. Whether this function is lost as a result of the normal ageing process, or if some people are more susceptible to it than others we dont know yet.

The next step for our research will be to look in more detail at how the prion protein controls beta amyloid, knowledge that could be used to design anti-Alzheimers drugs. Theoretically, if we can find a way of mimicking the prions function we should be able to halt the progress of Alzheimers. However, theres still a lot of work to be done in looking at levels of prions in the human system and how these may alter as we age.


Related medicine news :

1. Prions Capacity can Be Aggrevated by Solid Particles
2. Lose stomach for Life....Preventive removal of stomach saves the risk of cancer
3. Prevention is better than cure
4. Prevention of cataracts
5. Medications to Prevent Relapse to Cocaine Use
6. Estrogen Does Not Prevent Recurrent Strokes
7. Over-The-Counter Drugs May Prevent Alzheimers
8. Aspirin and Warfarin Are Equally Effective for Stroke Prevention
9. Alcoholism Drug Fails To Prevent Drinking Relapses
10. Preventing mental decline in the aged
11. Preventing white coat hypertension
Post Your Comments:

(Date:6/25/2016)... ... June 25, 2016 , ... "With 30 hand-drawn hand gesture ... said Christina Austin - CEO of Pixel Film Studios. , ProHand Cartoon’s package ... Final Cut Pro X . Simply select a ProHand generator and drag it ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... Montreal, Canada (PRWEB) , ... June 25, 2016 , ... ... the pursuit of success. In terms of the latter, setting the bar too high ... low, risk more than just slow progress toward their goal. , Research from ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... Dallas, Texas (PRWEB) , ... June 24, 2016 ... ... 12th International Conference and Scientific Sessions in Dallas that it will receive two ... Announcement of the grants came as PHA marked its 25th anniversary by recognizing ...
(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)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... National recruitment firm Slone Partners ... extensive sequencing and genomics experience, as Vice President of North American Capital Sales at ... responsible for leading the sales team in the commercialization of the HTG EdgeSeq system ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/24/2016)... , June 24, 2016 ... of the "Structural Electronics 2015-2025: Applications, Technologies, ... In-Mold Electronics, Smart Skin, ... Photovoltaics Structural electronics involves electronic ... load-bearing, protective structures, replacing dumb structures such as ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... India , June 24, 2016 ... Needles Market by Type (Standard Pen Needles, Safety Pen ... Therapy (Insulin, GLP-1, Growth Hormone), Mode of Purchase (Retail, ... by MarketsandMarkets, This report studies the market for the ... expected to reach USD 2.81 Billion by 2021 from ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... DUBLIN , June 23, 2016 ... "Dialysis Devices Global Market - Forecast to 2022" report ... is the treatment method for the patients with kidney failure, ... and excess fluid from the patient,s blood and thus the ... sodium, potassium and chloride in balance. Increasing ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: