[ExI] Alzheimers again
hkeithhenson at gmail.com
Wed Dec 10 16:25:07 UTC 2014
Has Stanford University found a cure for Alzheimer's disease?
A drug which boosts the brain's immune response may prevent or cure
Alzheimer's disease, scientists believe
Alzheimer's could be prevented and even cured by boosting the brain's
own immune response, scientists at Stanford University believe.
Researchers discovered that nerve cells die because cells which are
supposed to clear the brain of bacteria, viruses and dangerous deposits,
These cells, called 'microglia' function well when people are young, but
when they age, a single protein called EP2 stops them operating
Now scientists have shown that blocking the protein allows the microglia
to function normally again so they can hoover up the dangerous sticky
amyloid-beta plaques which damage nerve cells in Alzheimer's disease.
The researchers found that, in mice, blocking EP2 with a drug reversed
memory loss and myriad other Alzheimer's-like features in the animals.
"Microglia are the brain's beat cops," said Dr Katrin Andreasson,
Professor of neurology and neurological sciences at Stanford University
School of Medicine.
"Our experiments show that keeping them on the right track counters
memory loss and preserves healthy brain physiology."
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