Treatment of high blood sugar may have a scientific connection to memory loss that could, one day, benefit millions of people with Alzheimer's Disease, which affects up to 4.5 million older Americans, bringing with it impaired thinking and memory.
New research at the University of Virginia Health System and Case Western Reserve University shows that a drug approved by the Food and Drug Administration to treat type 2 diabetes may hold promise in treating Alzheimer's as well, without serious side effects. "We believe that the drug may reduce the body's inflammatory reaction to one of the toxic components that builds up in Alzheimer's, called amyloid plaque, " said Dr. David Geldmacher, an associate professor of neurology at UVa.
The drug, called pioglitazone HCl, was tested in a placebo-controlled trial involving 25 people with mild to moderate Alzheimer's. The study assessed the safety of the drug and, although the treatment appeared to reduce Alzheimer's progression, the study was too small for investigators to be sure of the effects on memory and everyday abilities. However, the findings are promising enough, researchers say, to carry out larger studies of pioglitazone.
The research was presented July 16 to the world's largest Alzheimer's conference, ICAD 2006, in Madrid, Spain. It was selected by ICAD organizers to be highlighted because of a growing sense of the relationship between diabetes and Alzheimer's.
"We don't know exactly how pioglitazone works in Alzheimer's, but there are two possibilities," Geldmacher said. "It could be that the drug reduces the body's response to the amyloid protein found in Alzheimer's. Or, it could be that this drug helps brain cells function. The real advantage is that it's a completely novel approach to treating the disease."
In the next few years, Geldmacher and his colleagues hope to study the effectiveness of pioglitazone in a group of 200 to 300 Alzheimer's patients nationwide. "If it works, this treatment might allow people to better hold on to memory and brain function over a period of time, despite having Alzheimer's," Geldmacher said. "It could also complement other treatments and become part of a multi-pronged approach to Alzheimer's treatment." Right now, there are 5 drugs approved by the FDA to treat Alzheimer's, Geldmacher said, but pioglitazone is unrelated to any of the others. The trial of pioglitazone at UVa and Case Western Reserve was supported by the National Institutes of Health and Takeda Pharmaceuticals North America, Inc., which manufactures the drug.
Bob Beard | EurekAlert!
Speed data for the brain’s navigation system
06.12.2016 | Deutsches Zentrum für Neurodegenerative Erkrankungen e.V. (DZNE)
Study suggests possible new target for treating and preventing Alzheimer's
02.12.2016 | Oregon Health & Science University
In recent years, lasers with ultrashort pulses (USP) down to the femtosecond range have become established on an industrial scale. They could advance some applications with the much-lauded “cold ablation” – if that meant they would then achieve more throughput. A new generation of process engineering that will address this issue in particular will be discussed at the “4th UKP Workshop – Ultrafast Laser Technology” in April 2017.
Even back in the 1990s, scientists were comparing materials processing with nanosecond, picosecond and femtosesecond pulses. The result was surprising:...
Have you ever wondered how you see the world? Vision is about photons of light, which are packets of energy, interacting with the atoms or molecules in what...
A multi-institutional research collaboration has created a novel approach for fabricating three-dimensional micro-optics through the shape-defined formation of porous silicon (PSi), with broad impacts in integrated optoelectronics, imaging, and photovoltaics.
Working with colleagues at Stanford and The Dow Chemical Company, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign fabricated 3-D birefringent...
In experiments with magnetic atoms conducted at extremely low temperatures, scientists have demonstrated a unique phase of matter: The atoms form a new type of quantum liquid or quantum droplet state. These so called quantum droplets may preserve their form in absence of external confinement because of quantum effects. The joint team of experimental physicists from Innsbruck and theoretical physicists from Hannover report on their findings in the journal Physical Review X.
“Our Quantum droplets are in the gas phase but they still drop like a rock,” explains experimental physicist Francesca Ferlaino when talking about the...
The Max Planck Institute for Physics (MPP) is opening up a new research field. A workshop from November 21 - 22, 2016 will mark the start of activities for an innovative axion experiment. Axions are still only purely hypothetical particles. Their detection could solve two fundamental problems in particle physics: What dark matter consists of and why it has not yet been possible to directly observe a CP violation for the strong interaction.
The “MADMAX” project is the MPP’s commitment to axion research. Axions are so far only a theoretical prediction and are difficult to detect: on the one hand,...
16.11.2016 | Event News
01.11.2016 | Event News
14.10.2016 | Event News
06.12.2016 | Materials Sciences
06.12.2016 | Medical Engineering
06.12.2016 | Power and Electrical Engineering