Amyloid plaques and tau (or neurofibrillary tangles) are the typical pathological lesions present in the shrinking brains of patients affected by Alzheimer’s disease. These pathological changes can be observed under a microscope, but the severity of the changes varies throughout the brain. A recent study by Xu et al. (Scientific Reports, 9th June 2016) investigated [...]
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Adequate exercise is essential to maintain not only a healthy body, but also a healthy mind. Physical exercise is beneficial for brain plasticity (the brain’s ability to change throughout life), increasing cognition and reducing the risk of dementia, particularly Alzheimer’s disease. Although we know that physical exercise reduces the risk of Alzheimer’s disease, we still [...]
Most people who suffer from Alzheimer’s disease are affected by neuropsychiatric symptoms, primarily depression, sleeping issues, apathy and verbal and physical agitation. As the disease progresses, delusions, hallucinations and aggression become more common. These neuropsychiatric symptoms have a major impact on the patient’s (and their caregiver’s) quality of life, and often the disease progresses more [...]
The APOE gene linked to Late-Onset Alzheimer's disease is present on one of the autosomal chromosomes (chromosome 19). Each of us inherits one of each autosomal chromosome from each parent, and if we have children, we pass one of each autosomal chromosome to the next generation. So this means, if you have two identical copies [...]
There are two general types of Alzheimer’s disease known as Early-Onset Familial Alzheimer’s and Late-Onset Alzheimer’s. Both diseases have similar symptoms and progression, but differ in the age of onset and the genetic cause. Early-Onset Alzheimer’s only occurs in less than 10% of cases and the first symptoms appear before the age of 65. This [...]
One of the major changes observed in the brain of an Alzheimer’s patient is the accumulation of the beta-amyloid protein between the neurons. These toxic amyloid plaques prevent the essential synapses between the neurons and may also activate a damaging inflammatory response. Several groups have been unsuccessfully attempting to use antibodies to selectively target and [...]
Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), such as aspirin and ibuprofen, are among the most common medications for pain relief, lowering fever and reducing swelling. Most NSAIDs inhibit the cyclooxygenase enzymes COX-1 and COX-2. These enzymes help with the formation of prostaglandins – the ‘pain’ molecules released from damaged tissue. There is increasing evidence that many NSAIDs [...]
The human brain has three major components. The main part is the cerebrum surrounded by an outer layer known as the cerebral cortex. This part of the brain is required for remembering, problem solving, feeling and thinking. At the back of the brain is the cerebellum, important for coordination and balance. The brain stem is [...]
Alzheimer’s is an irreversible and progressive brain disorder, but people do not die of Alzheimer’s. It is usually the complications from Alzheimer’s arising over time that can result in serious medical conditions or death. Some of the complications of Alzheimer’s include swallowing difficulty, bladder and bowel issues, immobility, behavioral problems, wandering, mental illness, sleep problems [...]
Staying healthy with a balanced diet and regular activity is important in maintaining brain health, and it can help to reduce dementia and Alzheimer’s risk. There are several risk factors that can contribute to the probability of developing Alzheimer’s disease. Alzheimer’s disease risk factors can be divided into two groups, modifiable and non-modifiable. Modifiable risk [...]