Tuesday, August 15, 2017

DISCOVERY OF NEW PROTEIN TARGET BRINGS RESEARCHERS CLOSER TO PREVENTING MEMORY LOSS CAUSED BY ALZHEIMER'S

The latest study from MIT has revealed that a protein called Sp3 is a “helper” to the enzyme HDAC2 in Alzheimer’s disease. In particular HDAC2 was found to be overexpressed in the brains of people with Alzheimer’s and therefore giving researchers an idea of how to create a treatment. In the past years, researchers tried to find methods to interfere with HDAC2's functioning, but had no results. Thanks to the new discovery, an enzyme that interferes with memory forming processes in people with the disease can now be targeted.

Alzheimer's disease is a neurological condition associated with the buildup of beta-amyloid and tau proteins in brain cells. Many of today’s treatments are centered on reducing this buildup to help the brain regain function.

"We think that once this epigenetic blockade of gene expression is in place, clearing beta amyloid may not be sufficient to restore the active configuration of the chromatin," Li-Huei Tsai said back in 2012.

The discovery of the new protein target will bring researchers closer to developing a new treatment for people with Alzheimer's that can potentially prevent and reverse the damage caused by the condition.

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