98% of Patients with Novel Protein Develop Alzheimer’s Disease

98% of Patients with Novel Protein Develop Alzheimer’s Disease
protein that causes Alzheimer'sAs a result of new research conducted at the Mayo Clinic, patients with Alzheimer's may all commonly share a newly discovered protein called TDP-43 as a potential cause for their disease, in addition to the well-known amyloid and tau proteins. Dr. Keith Josephs at the Mayo Clinic was the lead expert on the study and discussed TDP-43 at the Alzheimer's Association International Conference in Copenhagen on July 16th. At the Mayo Clinic, 342 brain autopsies revealed that people with TDP-43 were ten times more likely to have dementia at the time of death than those without it. "This is very important," asserted Laurie Ryan from the National Institute on Aging, which funded the study, in a news report. TDP-43 is already associated with other nervous system disorders: amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (Lou Gehrig's disease) and frontotemporal dementia. Similar to amyloid, TDP-43 is found in both healthy and diseased individuals, but an abnormal form of the protein causes problems in certain areas of the brain where it makes ball-like deposits. Of the 342 patients studied, 57% had the abnormal form of TDP-43. Less than 5% of the healthy population is expected to have abnormal TDP-43. Of the 57% with the protein, 98% showed signs of dementia. The remaining population without the protein had a dementia rate of only 81%. "If there are 2 million peopl
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