Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Visualizing Alzheimer’s disease

13.11.2003


Imaging damaged brain cells in living mice provides Alzheimer’s clues



Using recently developed techniques for imaging individual cells in living animals, a team led by researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis has watched as Alzheimer’s-like brain plaques damage mouse brain cells.

The results will be presented at 9 a.m. CT on Wednesday, Nov. 12, at the 33rd Annual Meeting of the Society for Neuroscience in New Orleans.


"This work is very exciting," says principal investigator David M. Holtzman, M.D. "We’ve been able to visualize damaged nerve connections in living animals and follow them over time in the same animal. Our next step is to determine whether such damage is reversible."

Holtzman is the Andrew B. and Gretchen P. Jones Professor of Neurology and head of the Department of Neurology, the Charlotte and Paul Hagemann Professor of Neurology and a professor of molecular biology and pharmacology. The first author is Robert P. Brendza, Ph.D., research instructor in neurology.

The study was conducted in collaboration with Brian Bacskai, Ph.D., investigator at Massachusetts General Institute for Neurodegenerative Disorders and an assistant professor of neurology at Harvard Medical School; and Bradley Hyman, M.D., Ph.D., director of the Alzheimer’s Unit at the Massachusetts General Institute for Neurodegenerative Disorders; and John B. Penney Jr. Professor of Neurology at Harvard Medical School; William E. Klunk, M.D., Ph.D., director of psychiatry of the Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center at the University of Pittsburgh; and Kelly Bales, senior biologist, and Steven Paul, M.D., executive vice president for science and technology at Eli Lilly and Co.

In the 1990s, biologists discovered the protein that makes certain jellyfish luminescent also could be used to generate fluorescent cells in other species. By shining light on a living mouse engineered to contain these proteins, researchers can watch cellular activity over time using a multiphoton microscope, a sophisticated new microscope technique.

Holtzman’s team used this technique to examine the brains of mice that develop plaques similar to those characteristic of Alzheimer’s disease. The mice also were engineered to have a subset of brain cells, or neurons, that express yellow fluorescent protein. Using this model, they observed neurons becoming increasingly disrupted by brain plaques over time.

"We plan to use this system to further examine the process of nerve cell damage and degeneration," Holtzman says. "This line of research should provide new insight into the underlying processes involved in the development of Alzheimer’s disease and help us determine whether the proteins that accumulate as brain plaques are a useful and feasible target for Alzheimer’s therapies."


Brendza RP, Bacskai BJ, Simmons KA, Skoch JM, Klunk WE, Mathis CA, Bales KR, Paul SM, Hyman BT, Holtzman DH. Imaging dystrophy in vivo in fluorescent PDAPP transgenic mice. Society for Neuroscience 33rd Annual Meeting. Nov. 12, 2003.

Funding from the National Institutes of Health, the Alzheimer’s Association and Eli Lilly and Company supported this research.

The full-time and volunteer faculty of Washington University School of Medicine are the physicians and surgeons of Barnes-Jewish and St. Louis Children’s hospitals. The School of Medicine is one of the leading medical research, teaching and patient-care institutions in the nation. Through its affiliations with Barnes-Jewish and St. Louis Children’s hospitals, the School of Medicine is linked to BJC HealthCare.

Gila Z. Reckess | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://medinfo.wustl.edu/

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Improving memory with magnets
28.03.2017 | McGill University

nachricht Graphene-based neural probes probe brain activity in high resolution
28.03.2017 | Graphene Flagship

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: A Challenging European Research Project to Develop New Tiny Microscopes

The Institute of Semiconductor Technology and the Institute of Physical and Theoretical Chemistry, both members of the Laboratory for Emerging Nanometrology (LENA), at Technische Universität Braunschweig are partners in a new European research project entitled ChipScope, which aims to develop a completely new and extremely small optical microscope capable of observing the interior of living cells in real time. A consortium of 7 partners from 5 countries will tackle this issue with very ambitious objectives during a four-year research program.

To demonstrate the usefulness of this new scientific tool, at the end of the project the developed chip-sized microscope will be used to observe in real-time...

Im Focus: Giant Magnetic Fields in the Universe

Astronomers from Bonn and Tautenburg in Thuringia (Germany) used the 100-m radio telescope at Effelsberg to observe several galaxy clusters. At the edges of these large accumulations of dark matter, stellar systems (galaxies), hot gas, and charged particles, they found magnetic fields that are exceptionally ordered over distances of many million light years. This makes them the most extended magnetic fields in the universe known so far.

The results will be published on March 22 in the journal „Astronomy & Astrophysics“.

Galaxy clusters are the largest gravitationally bound structures in the universe. With a typical extent of about 10 million light years, i.e. 100 times the...

Im Focus: Tracing down linear ubiquitination

Researchers at the Goethe University Frankfurt, together with partners from the University of Tübingen in Germany and Queen Mary University as well as Francis Crick Institute from London (UK) have developed a novel technology to decipher the secret ubiquitin code.

Ubiquitin is a small protein that can be linked to other cellular proteins, thereby controlling and modulating their functions. The attachment occurs in many...

Im Focus: Perovskite edges can be tuned for optoelectronic performance

Layered 2D material improves efficiency for solar cells and LEDs

In the eternal search for next generation high-efficiency solar cells and LEDs, scientists at Los Alamos National Laboratory and their partners are creating...

Im Focus: Polymer-coated silicon nanosheets as alternative to graphene: A perfect team for nanoelectronics

Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are less stable. Now researchers at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) have, for the first time ever, produced a composite material combining silicon nanosheets and a polymer that is both UV-resistant and easy to process. This brings the scientists a significant step closer to industrial applications like flexible displays and photosensors.

Silicon nanosheets are thin, two-dimensional layers with exceptional optoelectronic properties very similar to those of graphene. Albeit, the nanosheets are...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

International Land Use Symposium ILUS 2017: Call for Abstracts and Registration open

20.03.2017 | Event News

CONNECT 2017: International congress on connective tissue

14.03.2017 | Event News

ICTM Conference: Turbine Construction between Big Data and Additive Manufacturing

07.03.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Transport of molecular motors into cilia

28.03.2017 | Life Sciences

A novel hybrid UAV that may change the way people operate drones

28.03.2017 | Information Technology

NASA spacecraft investigate clues in radiation belts

28.03.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>