Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Possible Physical Origin Of Alzheimer's Disease

Date:
October 23, 2007
Source:
University of California
Summary:
For some time, scientists have blamed Alzheimer's disease on a small molecule called amyloid beta protein (A beta) that leaves large gummy deposits in the brain. Recent studies suggest that these A beta proteins stick together to form floating toxic clumps that kill brain cells. Now, scientists have identified a tiny loop in A beta as the likely culprit behind the adhesion process. The UCLA team discovered that gene mutations in A beta increase the loop's flexibility, enabling it to join easily with loops from other A beta proteins and form clumps. The loop also appears in the region of the protein that regulates how -- and how much -- A beta is made.

Amyloid Protein Loop. Broken red lines indicate a loop in the amyloid B-protein that enables it to attach to other proteins and form clumps that kill brain cells.
Credit: Image courtesy of University of California

For some time, scientists have blamed Alzheimer's disease on a small molecule called amyloid beta protein (A beta) that leaves large gummy deposits in the brain.Recent studies suggest that theseA betaproteins stick together to form floating toxic clumps that kill brain cells. Now, UCLA scientists have identified a tiny loop in A betaas the likely culprit behind the adhesion process.

Related Articles


The UCLA team discovered that gene mutations in A beta increase the loop's flexibility, enabling it to join easily with loops from other A betaproteins and form clumps. The loop also appears in the region of the protein that regulates how — and how much — A betais made.

Current drugs treat the symptoms of Alzheimer's but not the disease's underlying cause. By shedding light on how toxic A betaformations arise in the brain, the UCLA discovery could aid the design of new drugs that both block the production of A betaand prevent it from clumping.

Alzheimer's disease afflicts some5 million Americans and an estimated 24 million people worldwide. Half of people over 85 may suffer from the fatal disorder, which slowly robsindividuals of their memory and ability to think and function independently.

The principal investigator is David Teplow, professor of neurology at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA. The Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences published the findings in its Oct. 10 online early edition.

The National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, the National Institute on Aging and the Alzheimer's Association supported the study.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of California. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University of California. "Possible Physical Origin Of Alzheimer's Disease." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 23 October 2007. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/10/071022164228.htm>.
University of California. (2007, October 23). Possible Physical Origin Of Alzheimer's Disease. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 21, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/10/071022164228.htm
University of California. "Possible Physical Origin Of Alzheimer's Disease." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/10/071022164228.htm (accessed April 21, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Mind & Brain News

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Our Love Of Puppy Dog Eyes Explained By Science

Our Love Of Puppy Dog Eyes Explained By Science

Newsy (Apr. 17, 2015) Researchers found a spike in oxytocin occurs in both humans and dogs when they gaze into each other&apos;s eyes. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Scientists Find Link Between Gestational Diabetes And Autism

Scientists Find Link Between Gestational Diabetes And Autism

Newsy (Apr. 17, 2015) Researchers who analyzed data from over 300,000 kids and their mothers say they&apos;ve found a link between gestational diabetes and autism. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Video Messages Help Reassure Dementia Patients

Video Messages Help Reassure Dementia Patients

AP (Apr. 17, 2015) Family members are prerecording messages as part of a unique pilot program at the Hebrew Home in New York. The videos are trying to help victims of Alzheimer&apos;s disease and other forms of dementia break through the morning fog of forgetfulness. (April 17) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Common Pain Reliever Might Dull Your Emotions

Common Pain Reliever Might Dull Your Emotions

Newsy (Apr. 16, 2015) Each week, millions of Americans take acetaminophen to dull minor aches and pains. Now researchers say it might blunt life&apos;s highs and lows, too. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins