Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

New marker for Alzheimer's discovered

14.09.2009
Gothenburg researchers have discovered a previously unknown substance in spinal fluid that can be used to diagnose Alzheimer's disease. The findings, described in a thesis from the Sahlgrenska Academy at the University of Gothenburg, Sweden, will also be useful in research on new medications.

The substance is a beta-amyloid protein called Abeta16. The thesis shows in two independent studies that Alzheimer's patients have higher levels of the protein in their spinal fluid than do healthy individuals.

'The discovery of the new protein could be used to diagnose patients with Alzheimer's and also help determine which medications are most effective for the disease', says biochemist Erik Portelius, the author of the thesis.

Alzheimer's disease includes the formation of plaque on the brain. Neurons and other cell types form around 20 different beta-amyloid proteins, and these are excreted into the spinal fluid around the brain.

'These types of beta-amyloid proteins can be analysed with great precision, and our research team has also shown that the analyses can be used to distinguish between Alzheimer's patients and healthy individuals with a high degree of accuracy', says Portelius.

The beta-amyloid protein Abeta42 is particularly prevalent in the plaque. Abeta42 is created when a larger protein is cut into pieces by certain enzymes. The new Alzheimer's drugs that are currently being tested aim to reduce the production of Abeta42 by blocking these enzymes. Portelius found that these drugs increase the level of the newly discovered Abeta16.

'Abeta42 and Abeta16 are formed from the same precursor molecule, but the enzymatic process is different and Abeta16 is not harmful. The finding that Abeta16 is a very sensitive biomarker for the effect of these drugs may become very useful in future treatment studies', says Portelius.

The research was conducted in the proteomics lab at the neurochemistry unit in Mölndal, Sweden.

ABOUT ALZHEIMER'S DISEASE
Alzheimer's disease is one of our most common diseases, affecting more than 100 000 Swedes. The disease is caused by harmful changes in the nerve cells of the brain. Memory loss is very common, and so is premature death. Alzheimer's not only causes severe suffering among patients and their families, it also leads to enormous costs for society.
For more information, please contact:
Erik Portelius, biochemist, telephone +46 (0)31 343 23 90, +46 (0)70 480 00 59, erik.portelius@neuro.gu.se
Supervisor:
Professor Kaj Blennow, telephone +46 (0)31 343 17 91, kaj.blennow@neuro.gu.se
Thesis for the degree of Doctor of Medical Science at the Sahlgrenska Academy, Institute of Neuroscience and Physiology, Department of Psychiatry and Neurochemistry.
Title of the thesis: Targeted ABeta proteomics - a tool to study the pathogenesis of Alzheimer's disease
Link to thesis
http://hdl.handle.net/2077/20444

Helena Aaberg | idw
Further information:
http://hdl.handle.net/2077/20444

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht New risk factors for anxiety disorders
24.02.2017 | Julius-Maximilians-Universität Würzburg

nachricht Stingless bees have their nests protected by soldiers
24.02.2017 | Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Breakthrough with a chain of gold atoms

In the field of nanoscience, an international team of physicists with participants from Konstanz has achieved a breakthrough in understanding heat transport

In the field of nanoscience, an international team of physicists with participants from Konstanz has achieved a breakthrough in understanding heat transport

Im Focus: DNA repair: a new letter in the cell alphabet

Results reveal how discoveries may be hidden in scientific “blind spots”

Cells need to repair damaged DNA in our genes to prevent the development of cancer and other diseases. Our cells therefore activate and send “repair-proteins”...

Im Focus: Dresdner scientists print tomorrow’s world

The Fraunhofer IWS Dresden and Technische Universität Dresden inaugurated their jointly operated Center for Additive Manufacturing Dresden (AMCD) with a festive ceremony on February 7, 2017. Scientists from various disciplines perform research on materials, additive manufacturing processes and innovative technologies, which build up components in a layer by layer process. This technology opens up new horizons for component design and combinations of functions. For example during fabrication, electrical conductors and sensors are already able to be additively manufactured into components. They provide information about stress conditions of a product during operation.

The 3D-printing technology, or additive manufacturing as it is often called, has long made the step out of scientific research laboratories into industrial...

Im Focus: Mimicking nature's cellular architectures via 3-D printing

Research offers new level of control over the structure of 3-D printed materials

Nature does amazing things with limited design materials. Grass, for example, can support its own weight, resist strong wind loads, and recover after being...

Im Focus: Three Magnetic States for Each Hole

Nanometer-scale magnetic perforated grids could create new possibilities for computing. Together with international colleagues, scientists from the Helmholtz Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf (HZDR) have shown how a cobalt grid can be reliably programmed at room temperature. In addition they discovered that for every hole ("antidot") three magnetic states can be configured. The results have been published in the journal "Scientific Reports".

Physicist Dr. Rantej Bali from the HZDR, together with scientists from Singapore and Australia, designed a special grid structure in a thin layer of cobalt in...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Booth and panel discussion – The Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings at the AAAS 2017 Annual Meeting

13.02.2017 | Event News

Complex Loading versus Hidden Reserves

10.02.2017 | Event News

International Conference on Crystal Growth in Freiburg

09.02.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Stingless bees have their nests protected by soldiers

24.02.2017 | Life Sciences

New risk factors for anxiety disorders

24.02.2017 | Life Sciences

MWC 2017: 5G Capital Berlin

24.02.2017 | Trade Fair News

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>