Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

New ways of treating Alzheimer’s

01.11.2011
Several potential drugs for the treatment of Alzheimer’s have worked well on mice – but none of them on humans. A leading researcher from the Sahlgrenska Academy at the University of Gothenburg, Sweden, is now launching brand new methods for diagnosing Alzheimer’s and monitoring treatment.
Research advances in recent years have given us a detailed knowledge of the molecular mechanisms behind Alzheimer’s disease. The spotlight has fallen on beta amyloid, a peptide formed from a special protein in the brain. The prevailing hypothesis is that the protein clumps together into plaques, which damage the brain’s nerve cells and causes the characteristic symptoms of Alzheimer’s.

The amyloid theory has spawned a large number of potential drugs which attempt to delay the development of the disease by slowing down the formation of, or even clearing, plaques. However, several major clinical trials have shown that this type of medication is not at all effective.

Kaj Blennow, a professor at the University of Gothenburg’s Sahlgrenska Academy and one of the world’s leading dementia researchers, is now taking research into new Alzheimer’s medication in a brand new direction.
“It’s important that we constantly question research results, including in Alzheimer’s research,” says Blennow. “And to do this we have to come up with new analytical methods.”

Blennow and his research colleagues believe that the solution lies in being able to test different drugs directly on living patients instead of on mice as has been the case to date.
“The mouse models currently being used have a very tenuous link to the most common form of Alzheimer’s,” says Blennow. “This is particularly obvious when new drug candidates are tested on real people – we have now identified over 100 molecules that reduce the formation of plaques in mice with Alzheimer’s, but unfortunately none have led to a single drug that slows down the illness in humans.”

Blennow and his research colleagues at the Clinical Neurochemistry Laboratory are trying instead to come up with new analytical methods that use biomarkers to monitor biochemical changes in patients with Alzheimer’s. It is hoped that the biomarkers can be used both to make an accurate and early diagnosis and to establish and monitor the effects of new drugs.

“Our studies on patients with Alzheimer’s and other age-related disorders would suggest that beta-amyloid is perhaps not the direct cause of the illness, but instead the brain’s response to different types of stress,” says Blennow. “This could completely change the way we view the illness and could play a crucial role in future treatments.”

ALZHEIMER’S DISEASE
With more than 100,000 people affected in Sweden, Alzheimer’s is one of our most common diseases. Caused by changes in the brain’s nerve cells, the disease predominantly affects the memory and often leads to an early death. Alzheimer’s results in not only considerable suffering for patients and their families, but also enormous costs to society.
For more information, please contact: Kaj Blennow
Tel: +46 (0)31 343 1791, mobile: +46 (0)761 073 835
E-mail: kaj.blennow@neuro.gu.se

Helena Aaberg | idw
Further information:
http://www.gu.se

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht PET imaging tracks Zika virus infection, disease progression in mouse model
20.09.2017 | US Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases

nachricht 'Exciting' discovery on path to develop new type of vaccine to treat global viruses
18.09.2017 | University of Southampton

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: Tiny lasers from a gallery of whispers

New technique promises tunable laser devices

Whispering gallery mode (WGM) resonators are used to make tiny micro-lasers, sensors, switches, routers and other devices. These tiny structures rely on a...

Im Focus: Ultrafast snapshots of relaxing electrons in solids

Using ultrafast flashes of laser and x-ray radiation, scientists at the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics (Garching, Germany) took snapshots of the briefest electron motion inside a solid material to date. The electron motion lasted only 750 billionths of the billionth of a second before it fainted, setting a new record of human capability to capture ultrafast processes inside solids!

When x-rays shine onto solid materials or large molecules, an electron is pushed away from its original place near the nucleus of the atom, leaving a hole...

Im Focus: Quantum Sensors Decipher Magnetic Ordering in a New Semiconducting Material

For the first time, physicists have successfully imaged spiral magnetic ordering in a multiferroic material. These materials are considered highly promising candidates for future data storage media. The researchers were able to prove their findings using unique quantum sensors that were developed at Basel University and that can analyze electromagnetic fields on the nanometer scale. The results – obtained by scientists from the University of Basel’s Department of Physics, the Swiss Nanoscience Institute, the University of Montpellier and several laboratories from University Paris-Saclay – were recently published in the journal Nature.

Multiferroics are materials that simultaneously react to electric and magnetic fields. These two properties are rarely found together, and their combined...

Im Focus: Fast, convenient & standardized: New lab innovation for automated tissue engineering & drug

MBM ScienceBridge GmbH successfully negotiated a license agreement between University Medical Center Göttingen (UMG) and the biotech company Tissue Systems Holding GmbH about commercial use of a multi-well tissue plate for automated and reliable tissue engineering & drug testing.

MBM ScienceBridge GmbH successfully negotiated a license agreement between University Medical Center Göttingen (UMG) and the biotech company Tissue Systems...

Im Focus: Silencing bacteria

HZI researchers pave the way for new agents that render hospital pathogens mute

Pathogenic bacteria are becoming resistant to common antibiotics to an ever increasing degree. One of the most difficult germs is Pseudomonas aeruginosa, a...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

“Lasers in Composites Symposium” in Aachen – from Science to Application

19.09.2017 | Event News

I-ESA 2018 – Call for Papers

12.09.2017 | Event News

EMBO at Basel Life, a new conference on current and emerging life science research

06.09.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Molecular Force Sensors

20.09.2017 | Life Sciences

Producing electricity during flight

20.09.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Tiny lasers from a gallery of whispers

20.09.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>