Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Earliest brain changes linked to Alzheimer's genetic risk point to possible prevention therapies

Date:
December 6, 2010
Source:
IOS Press BV
Summary:
What are the earliest brain changes associated with the risk of developing Alzheimer's disease? A new study finds reduced activity of an energy-generating enzyme in deceased young adult brain donors who carry a common genetic risk factor for Alzheimer's disease -- before the protein changes or microscopic abnormalities commonly associated with the disease and almost five decades before the age at which they might have developed memory and thinking problems.

What are the earliest brain changes associated with the risk of developing Alzheimer's disease? A scientific report published in the October Journal of Alzheimer's Disease finds reduced activity of an energy-generating enzyme in deceased young adult brain donors who carry a common genetic risk factor for Alzheimer's disease -- before the protein changes or microscopic abnormalities commonly associated with the disease and almost five decades before the age at which they might have developed memory and thinking problems.

Arizona researchers studied tissue from a vulnerable part of the brain in 40 young adults who had died and donated their brains for research. 15 of the brain donors carried a common genetic risk factor for Alzheimer's disease, known as APOE4, and 25 of the brain donors did not. With the exception of a person with two copies of the APOE4 gene, none of the deceased young adults had the microscopic abnormalities or elevated amyloid protein levels long associated with Alzheimer's disease. However, the activity of an enzyme known as cytochrome oxidase, an energy-making enzyme found in the power-packs of the brain cells, was slightly reduced in the group at increased genetic risk for Alzheimer's disease.

A team of researchers from several institutions in the Arizona Alzheimer's Consortium had previously used a brain imaging technique called PET to detect reduced brain activity in living young adults at genetic risk for Alzheimer's disease. They had also shown reductions in cytochrome oxidase activity and the expression of energy-making genes in deceased brain donors with Alzheimer's symptoms. Based on these findings, they had proposed that individuals at genetic risk for Alzheimer's disease might have alterations in energy utilization, or some other abnormality in the mitochondria (the power packs inside each cell) long before the progressive brain changes associated with Alzheimer's disease had even started.

"Our findings suggest that mitochondrial brain changes contribute to the risk of Alzheimer's disease," said Jon Valla, Assistant Professor of Biochemistry at Midwestern University and the study's lead author. He conducted the cytochrome oxidase activity analysis at the Barrow Neurological Institute. "While our findings do not suggest ways in which to predict or reduce a person's risk at this time, they provide a foundation for studies seeking to do just that."

This study was supported by the State of Arizona, the Barrow Neurological Foundation, and the National Institute on Aging. The study authors include Eric Reiman and Roy Yaari (Banner Alzheimer's Institute and University of Arizona), Andrew Wolf and Yael Kusne (Arizona State University and Barrow Neurological Institute), Thomas Beach and Alex Roher (Banner Sun Health Research Institute), Jason Corneveaux and Matthew Huentelman (Translational Genomics Research Institute), and Richard Caselli (Mayo Clinic in Arizona). Brain samples were provided by the National Institute for Childhood Disorders-supported Tissue Bank for Developmental Disorders at the University of Maryland in Baltimore.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by IOS Press BV. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Jon Valla, Roy Yaari, Andrew B. Wolf, Yael Kusne, Thomas G. Beach, Alex E. Roher, Jason J. Corneveaux, Matthew J. Huentelman, Richard J. Caselli and Eric M. Reiman. Reduced Posterior Cingulate Mitochondrial Activity in Expired Young Adult Carriers of the APOE ε4 Allele, the Major Late-Onset Alzheimer's Susceptibility Gene. Journal of Alzheimer's Disease, 2010; 22 (1): 307-313 DOI: 10.3233/JAD-2010-100129

Cite This Page:

IOS Press BV. "Earliest brain changes linked to Alzheimer's genetic risk point to possible prevention therapies." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 6 December 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101130131219.htm>.
IOS Press BV. (2010, December 6). Earliest brain changes linked to Alzheimer's genetic risk point to possible prevention therapies. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 16, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101130131219.htm
IOS Press BV. "Earliest brain changes linked to Alzheimer's genetic risk point to possible prevention therapies." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101130131219.htm (accessed September 16, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

President To Send 3,000 Military Personnel To Fight Ebola

President To Send 3,000 Military Personnel To Fight Ebola

Newsy (Sep. 16, 2014) President Obama is expected to send 3,000 troops to West Africa as part of the effort to contain Ebola's spread. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Man Floats for 31 Hours in Gulf Waters

Man Floats for 31 Hours in Gulf Waters

AP (Sep. 16, 2014) A Texas man is lucky to be alive after he and three others floated for more than a day in the Gulf of Mexico when their boat sank during a fishing trip. (Sept. 16) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
EU Ministers and Experts Meet to Discuss Ebola Reponse

EU Ministers and Experts Meet to Discuss Ebola Reponse

AFP (Sep. 15, 2014) The European Commission met on Monday to coordinate aid that the EU can offer to African countries affected by the Ebola outbreak. Duration: 00:58 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Despite The Risks, Antibiotics Still Overprescribed For Kids

Despite The Risks, Antibiotics Still Overprescribed For Kids

Newsy (Sep. 15, 2014) A new study finds children are prescribed antibiotics twice as often as is necessary. 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:
from the past week

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