Infection by Parasite Could Be Linked to Development of Alzheimer’s, Study Reports

Infection by Parasite Could Be Linked to Development of Alzheimer’s, Study Reports
Researchers have found a connection between an infection with the parasite Toxoplasma gondii and neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s. The study, “Toxoplasma Modulates Signature Pathways of Human Epilepsy, Neurodegeneration & Cancer,” was published in the journal Nature. One of the major challenges in medicine today is finding a cure for non-contagious diseases that arise from complex interactions between genetic and environmental factors. While scientists have been trying to find a cause and cure for these diseases, they have been ignoring a major environmental factor. The parasite T. gondii infects more than two billion people, and the infection stays with them throughout their life. Some studies have shown an association between the prevalence of T. gondii and the presence of neurological diseases such as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s. This prompted researchers to ask two questions: (1) What other neurological diseases might a chronic brain infection with the parasite be linked to? And (2) What brain networks does the parasite affect that could facilitate a treatment design? To answer these questions, researchers integrated multiple levels of host-parasite interactions to create a global picture of the infection. Their key research tool was people involved in the National Collaborative Chicago Based Congenital Toxoplasmosis Study. The study covers 246 people with congenital infections of T. gondii who have been followed since 1981. Using information from the study, researchers identified genes that
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2 comments

  1. Tony Hogben says:

    ….I have often wondered about parasites causing this horrible disease which I was diagnosed with in 2007…..I feel like a dog that has had distemper and recovered…
    ….hopefully someone will try something different and research a new area of possibilities…..

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