Brain May Have Plasticity to Compensate for Alzheimer’s-Related Protein, UC Berkeley Research Discovers

Brain May Have Plasticity to Compensate for Alzheimer’s-Related Protein, UC Berkeley Research Discovers
brain plasticityThe human brain has the plasticity to compensate for the accumulation of the protein beta-amyloid that causes Alzheimer's disease, which explains that some individuals develop it and others don't, as concluded by research conducted at the University of California in Berkeley (UC Berkeley). The researchers analyzed adults with and without beta-amyloid deposits in their brain and believe to be able to explain why some retain normal cognitive function while others develop dementia. The findings of the study were published at the Nature Neuroscience journal. “This study provides evidence that there is plasticity or compensation ability in the aging brain that appears to be beneficial, even in the face of beta-amyloid accumulation,” explained the study's main investigator Dr. William Jagust, who is a professor with joint appointments at UC Berkeley’s Helen Wills Neuroscience Institute, the School of Public Health, and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. The patients enrolled in the study were examined using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to evaluate their brain activity during the process of memorizing pictures of a series of scenes. To test their "gist memory," the researchers conducted a questionnaire where they described a scene and the patients had to correspond it to a picture previously viewed, as well as to confi
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