Posted: Nov 16, 2021 20:53 GMT
Researchers from the UK and Germany determined that the drugs helped restore neural function, increase glucose metabolism in the brain, and restore memory loss.
A team of scientists from the UK and Germany has developed a promising new approach to potentially treating Alzheimer’s disease, and even vaccinate against it. The research, published Monday in the journal Molecular Psychiatry, points out that researchers from the University of Leicester, the University Medical Center of Göttingen and the medical research charity LifeArc achieved reduce symptoms in mice affected by the disease.
Instead of focusing treatment on the beta amyloid protein, which forms plaques in the brain associated with Alzheimer’s, the scientists set about creating antibodies to another form of the soluble protein, according to the study. “In clinical trials, none of the potential treatments that dissolve amyloid plaques in the brain have shown much success in terms of reducing the symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease. Some have even shown negative side effects“said Professor Thomas Bayer of the Göttingen University Medical Center.
“So we took a different approach. We identified an antibody in mice that would neutralize the truncated forms of soluble beta amyloid, but would not bind to normal forms of the protein or to plaques,” Bayer explained.
For their part, Dr. Preeti Bakrania and her colleagues at LifeArc were in charge of adapting this antibody, called TAP01_04, so that the human immune system does not recognize it as foreign and does not reject it. When put to the test, the researchers were surprised to find that the protein doubled over on itself hairpin.
“This structure never seen before in beta amyloid. However, the discovery of such a well-defined structure allowed the team to engineer this region of the protein to stabilize the hairpin shape and bind to the antibody in the same way, “said Professor Mark Carr of the Institute for Chemical and Structural Biology of the United States. University of Leicester. “Our idea was that this modified form of beta amyloid could potentially used as a vaccine, for activate the immune system someone to produce antibodies, “said the professor.
When the scientists tested both a ‘humanized’ antibody treatment and a modified amyloid beta vaccine called TAPAS in mice, they found that both helped restore neural function, increase glucose metabolism in the brain, restore memory loss and, although they were not directly targeted, reduce the formation of beta amyloid plaque.
“The results so far are very exciting. If the treatment is successful, it could transform the lives of many patients,” concludes Professor Bakrania, while Carr adds that if “these results were replicated in human clinical trials, it could be transformative. “. “It opens the possibility not only to treat Alzheimer’s as soon as symptoms are detected, but also to potentially vaccinate against the disease before these appear“, asserted the researcher.
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