A new study by Curtin University in Australia claims that researchers found the possible cause of Alzheimer’s Disease. With the possible cause being discovered, there is potential to find new ways to prevent or even treat the disease.
The study, published in the PLOS Biology journal, is significant because Alzheimer’s Disease is the second-leading cause of deaths in Australia.
The research involved testing on mouse models to identify the probable cause of the disease. Experts concluded that the cause might be the leakage from the blood into the brain of fat-carrying particles that transport toxic proteins, Medical Express reported.
The lead investigator of the research, Curtin Health Innovation Research Institute (CHIRI) Director Professor John Mamo, noted that many studies have shown that people living with Alzheimer’s Disease suffered from the progressive accumulation of toxic protein deposits within the brain called beta-amyloid.
However, researchers did not know where the amyloid originated from or why it was deposited in the brain. Mamo added, “Our research shows that these toxic protein deposits that form in the brains of people living with Alzheimer’s disease most likely leak into the brain from fat carrying particles in blood called lipoproteins. This ‘blood-to-brain pathway’ is significant because if we can manage the levels in blood of lipoprotein-amyloid and prevent their leakage into the brain, this opens up potential new treatments to prevent Alzheimer’s disease and slow memory loss.”
The team of Mamo used genetically engineered mouse models to produce a human amyloid-only liver that makes lipoproteins. Per the findings, the mouse models that produced lipoprotein-amyloid in the liver suffered inflammation in the brain. In turn, this accelerated brain cell death and memory loss.
Mamo said they need more studies now, but the finding shows that the abundance of toxic protein deposits in the blood could be addressed through a person’s diet and drugs that could “specifically target lipoprotein amyloid, therefore reducing their risk or slowing the progression of Alzheimer’s disease.”