New study shows causes of Alzheimer’s disease. Alzheimer's is the most common cause of dementia. Now, researchers have come up with a better understanding of why and how Alzheimer’s disease occurs.
Their study shows potential treatment and prevention options for the neurodegenerative condition.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) states that Alzheimer’s disease affects up to 5.8 million people in the United States.
Alzheimer’s disease affects a person’s brains parts associated with memory, thought, and language. The symptoms can include mild memory loss, inability to hold conversations, environmental disorientation, and mood changes.
For the latest study, the researchers used two mouse models. They genetically modified animals in the test group so that their livers would produce human amyloid-beta which is a component of the amyloid plaques found in the brains of people with Alzheimer's disease
Then the investigators subjected both groups to a memory test for cognitive functions and analyzed the corresponding results.
They found dysfunction in the blood-brain barrier in both the test group and the control group of mouse models. This led to the protein-fat complexes leaking from the blood into the brain, resulting in inflammation.
“To find new opportunities to prevent and treat Alzheimer’s, we need to understand what actually causes the disease, and presently that is not established,” Lead study author Dr. John Mamo, Ph.D. said.
“This study shows that exaggerated abundance in blood of potentially toxic fat-protein complexes can damage microscopic brain blood vessels called capillaries and, thereafter, leak into the brain, causing inflammation and brain cell death,” he added.