The Physicians Committee

Breaking Research News - Alzheimer's disease

Mathematical Modeling Reveals How Cholesterol Promotes Alzheimer’s Disease

Although cholesterol has long been implicated in the pathogenesis of Alzheimer’s disease, the mechanism by which this occurs has not been well understood. Using mathematical modeling, researchers discovered that the cholesterol in cell membranes can accelerate the aggregation of the protein amyloid-β42, a key pathological hallmark in Alzheimer’s disease. 

Dancing for Brain Function

In a small clinical trial with 26 elderly adults, researchers found that patients who engage in a regular dancing routine for 18 months showed greater enlargement of the hippocampus—a brain area critical for memory—and better balance control than patients who are engaged in regular endurance exercise.

Music Therapy Improved Dementia-Related Symptoms in Nursing Home Residents

A personalized music program studied in more than 12,000 residents in 98 nursing homes was found to improve behavioral and mood problems associated with Alzheimer’s disease and related dementia, relative to nursing home residents who did not receive the program.

Meditation and Music Improve Memory and Cognition

A recent small randomized control trial tested Kirtan Kriya meditation or classical music listening in 30 adults with subjective cognitive decline (SCD).

Human Tissue Study Discovers Stronger Link between Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s

Researchers found pathological evidence of Alzheimer’s disease in post-mortem brain tissues from 213 patients diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease with dementia (PDD) or dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB), with the level of Alzheimer’s pathology predicting dementia symptom onset and survival in these patients.  

Human Imaging Study Identifies Novel Origin of Alzheimer’s Disease

Improving diagnostics that can detect earlier biological signs of Alzheimer's disease is critical for prevention strategies and therapeutics.

Scientists Find Brain Cells Responsible for Imagination in Humans

Using an imaging technique called functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), researchers from the University College of London revealed that grid cells are also active even when healthy human volunteers are only imagining that they are navigating through an environment. The study showed that grid cells in the entorhinal cortex create an internal hexagonal grid-like coordinate system to help us remember our locations and navigate during imagination.

Metal Nanoparticles Disrupt Toxic Effects of Plaques in Alzheimer's Disease

Metal oxides could reduce the amount of aggregation of amyloid-beta and copper ions and increase the cell survival.

Human Eye Provides Link between Alzheimer's and Sleep Disturbances

A multinational team of researchers from Italy, the United States, and Denmark recently reported new findings published in the Annals of Neurology showing changes in specialized eye cells that play an important role in healthy circadian function in Alzheimer's patients.

Virtual Maze Test Could Predict Alzheimer’s Disease

The early diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease will help define preventative intervention strategies. In this regard, a group of neuroscientists at the Centre for Neurodegenerative Diseases in Bonn, Germany, has recently developed a virtual maze test to detect the risk of Alzheimer’s disease decades before the onset of the disease.

New Technologies for Early Alzheimer’s Diagnosis

Early diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease might help planning early pharmaceutical or nonpharmaceutical intervention strategies.

New Method for Early Alzheimer’s Diagnosis

Early diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease might be helpful to set up intervention strategies aimed at preventing the onset of the disease.

Prevention and Lifestyle Factors Reduce Dementia Risk

In the last 20 years, several epidemiological studies have examined the effects and incidence of Alzheimer’s disease and dementia in Western countries, reporting alarming data on the increasing number of persons expected to develop dementia in the near future. A recent report published by leading researchers of various European institutions has analyzed five large epidemiological studies conducted in Western Europe (two in Sweden, one in the United Kingdom, one in the Netherlands, and one in Spain).

New Paper Suggests Need for Human-Relevant Alzheimer’s Research

A new commentary in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease by Physicians Committee medical research specialist Francesca Pistollato, Ph.D., and colleagues, addresses the need to refocus current research efforts on human-based methods, such as human cells and computational models, together with epidemiological and clinical studies. These tools will help facilitate human-relevant data acquisition, in an effort to face the increasing prevalence of Alzheimer’s disease.

Technique Could Convert Patient Cells for Personalized Treatment

Through a new technique, cells derived from a patient might be directly transplantable into the same patient for treatment purposes, providing an alternative strategy for modeling neurological diseases and for regenerative medicine.

Molecular Simulator Enables Study of Alzheimer's Therapeutics

By using a new molecular simulator, a group of scientists has investigated the possible therapeutic effects of curcumin, a substance found in the spice turmeric.

Alzheimer's in a Dish Advances Therapy Testing

Harvard University researchers have developed a method for studying Alzheimer's disease in a laboratory dish, a technique that could potentially eliminate the use of animals commonly used to test potential drugs.