Insights into Amyloid Natural State Suggest New Course of Alzheimer’s Treatment

Insights into Amyloid Natural State Suggest New Course of Alzheimer’s Treatment
With the help of an extremely powerful infrared spectroscopy method, researchers have found evidence challenging the widely held theory that Alzheimer’s disease can be prevented by clearing amyloid-beta from the brain. The research team at Lund University in Sweden discovered that amyloid-beta naturally exists as a four-unit complex and not as a single peptide (a shorter protein) as researchers believe. This suggests that it may be the separation of the complex's smaller pieces that makes amyloid aggregate. Therefore, the team suggests that it may be possible to treat Alzheimer’s by using drugs that stabilize the amyloid complex. Such a drug is already approved for a disease caused by the breaking up of a four-unit amyloid-complex. The study, “Pre-plaque conformational changes in Alzheimer’s disease-linked Aβ and APP,” was published in the journal Nature Communications. "No one has used this method to look at Alzheimer's development before. The images tell us that the progression is slower than we thought and that there are steps in the development of Alzheimer's disease that we know little about. This, of course, sparked our curiosity," Gunnar Gouras, professor in experimental neurology at Lund University and senior author of the study, said in a press release. Today, the scientific community is dominated by a number of ideas. Many researchers are convinced that Alzheimer’s disease is linked to the development of amyloid-beta plaque — which has led to numerous cli
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