Alzheimer's is a very complex and heartbreaking disease, with no great understanding of how it develops or how to cure it, causing no forms of any type of treatment. Scientists at the Salk Institute decided to grow neurons that resemble brain cells in older patients, and it shows that they start to lose their identity. They are shown to be markers of stress, and tend to resemble cancer cells which is also linked to aging.
In the study they conducted comparing skin cells with Alzheimer's affected patients, they discovered that the Alzheimer's cells had a lack of synaptic structures, which are important for sending signals to each other. They also had changes in their signaling pathways, which control cell function, indicating that the cells were stressed. Additionally, they found the Alzheimer's neurons had very similar molecular signatures to immature nerve cells found in the developing brain, meaning they lose their mature identity.
Hopefully with these new insights and further research, there can be a new therapeutic treatment for Alzheimer's patients. This could substantially change the path for the patient and for their families when dealing with this life-changing disease.
Alzheimers is one of the most cruel diseases I see at work, it must be terrifying to be a senior citizen spending every hour of their day suffering from uncontrollable confusion. Of all of the diseases in the world, Alzheimers is at the top of my list of diseases I hope we make substantial advancements in during my lifetime.ReplyDelete
This article is very interesting. Alzheimers is a scary disease, and I learned that these neurons are similar to immature nerve cells in the developing brain, and I am interested to see what more is learned about this in the future.ReplyDelete