Alzheimer’s Therapy Candidate Bryostatin Generates New Synapses in Mouse Brains, Study Shows

Alzheimer’s Therapy Candidate Bryostatin Generates New Synapses in Mouse Brains, Study Shows
Neurotrope Bioscience's lead Alzheimer's drug candidate, bryostatin, promotes the formation of new synapses in the brains of mice, according to the study, “PKC epsilon Promotes Synaptogenesis through Membrane accumulation of the Postsynaptic Density Protein PSD-95,” recently published in the Journal of Biological Chemistry. Synaptogenesis and synaptic maturation are two common concepts in the field of neuroscience. While synaptogenesis is about the formation of synapses between neurons in the nervous system, synaptic maturation is related to a maturing process that synapses undergo from a young neuron (at this stage, they cannot receive synapses from other cells) to adult, mature neurons. Previous reports showed the protein kinase C epsilon (PKCε) promotes both synaptic maturation and synaptogenesis. However, the full molecular mechanisms involving PKCε-mediated maturation were not fully understood. Another protein, called PSD-95, was also shown to lead to synaptic maturation. In this study, researchers investigated the relationship between PKCε and PSD-95. They discovered that bryostatin activates PKCε and increases the levels of PSD-95, targeting it to the neuronal membrane and enhancing synaptogenesis through PSD-95. Two proteins, amyloid-beta and tau, established factors known to form toxic accumulates in the brains of people with Alzheimer's disease, also reduce PSD-95. This reduction continues to be detected as the disease progresses. Neurotrope Bioscience is funding a Phase 2b clinical trial
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