Neurodegenerative Disorder News

Common Mechanism May Be Responsible for the Spread of Alzheimer’s and CTE

December 8, 2016

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Alzheimer’s and CTE May Spread Via a Common Mechanism

A newly published study from UC San Francisco reveals that a shared biological mechanism may drive the progression of both Alzheimer’s disease and chronic traumatic encephalopathy. Both Alzheimer’s and CTE are classified as “tauopathies,” a category of diseases characterized by the improper folding and clumping together of a protein called tau (rhymes with “how”) inside […]

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Biochemists Identify Another Piece of the Parkinson’s Disease Pathology Puzzle

January 28, 2016

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Researchers Identify another Piece in the Parkinson's Disease Pathology Puzzle

An international team has discovered that the LRRK2 kinase regulates cellular trafficking by deactivating Rab proteins. This finding illuminates a novel route for therapeutic development and may accelerate testing of LRRK2 inhibitors as a disease-modifying therapy for Parkinson’s, the second most common neurodegenerative disease. An international public-private research consortium has identified and validated a cellular […]

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Study Shows Amateur Contact Sports Increase Risk of Degenerative Disorder

December 2, 2015

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Football Increases Risk of Degenerative Disorder

Past evidence has shown that professional football players are susceptible to a progressive degenerative disease, chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), which is caused by repetitive brain trauma. Now a new study from the Mayo Clinic reveals a significant and surprising amount of CTE in males who had participated in amateur contact sports in their youth. About […]

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Machine-Learning Systems That Can Help Predict the Effects of Neurodegenerative Disease

October 6, 2015

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Engineers Are Building Computer Systems to Predict Alzheimer’s and Changes in the Brain

By combining MRI and other data, engineers from MIT are developing a computer system that uses genetic, demographic, and clinical data to help predict the effects of disease on brain anatomy. In experiments, they trained a machine-learning system on MRI data from patients with neurodegenerative diseases and found that supplementing that training with other patient […]

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New Drug Compound Reverses the Brain Deficits of Alzheimer’s Disease in Mice

August 6, 2014

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Researchers Reversed the Effects of Alzheimers Disease in Mice

A newly published study reveals a new drug compound that inhibits the negative effects of a protein called STtriatal-Enriched tyrosine Phosphatase and reverses the brain deficits of Alzheimer’s disease in mice. Researchers at Yale School of Medicine have discovered a new drug compound that reverses the brain deficits of Alzheimer’s disease in an animal model. […]

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Researchers Discover New Link between Processes Associated with a Parkinson’s Related Gene Defect

January 30, 2014

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Researchers Discover New Link between Processes Associated with a Parkinsons Related Gene Defect

Researchers from the Max Planck Institute have discovered a new link between processes associated with a Parkinson’s-related gene defect, paving the way to the development of more refined GDNF therapies in the future. Neurodegenerative diseases like Parkinson’s disease involve the death of thousands of neurons in the brain. Nerve growth factors produced by the body, […]

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Glymphatic System May Hold a Key to Treating Alzheimer’s

July 1, 2013

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Alzheimers May Result From a Slowing Down of the Glymphatic System

Newly published research details how a better understanding of the glymphatic system and its process of slowing down as we age may result in new methods for treating Alzheimer’s and other neurodegenerative diseases. In a perspective piece appearing in the journal Science, researchers at University of Rochester Medical Center (URMC) point to a newly discovered […]

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Scientists Develop a Tool for Reading the Minds of Mice in Real-Time

February 25, 2013

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A System for Observing Real-Time Brain Activity in a Live Mouse

Stanford scientists have developed a technique for observing real-time brain activity in live mice. The new tool may be useful in the fight against neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer’s. As the mouse explores the arena, neurons in its brain flash green when it recognizes a familiar spot. Courtesy of Mark Schnitzer If you want to […]

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Stem Cell Biologists Turn One Form of Neuron into Another

January 25, 2013

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Researchers Turn One Form of Neuron into Another in the Brain

New research from stem cell biologists at Harvard University demonstrates the ability to turn one type neuron into another within the brain of young mice, possibly providing another step towards the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases. A new finding by Harvard stem cell biologists turns one of the basics of neurobiology on its head by demonstrating […]

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Synthetic Antioxidant Suppresses Symptoms of Huntington’s Disease in Mice

November 5, 2012

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Huntington's disease mouse model

A team of scientists have designed a synthetic antioxidant, XJB-5-131, that targets mitochondria and suppresses symptoms of Huntington’s disease in mice. There’s new hope in the fight against Huntington’s disease. A group of researchers that includes scientists from the U.S. Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) have designed a compound that suppresses […]

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Embryonic Stem Cells Will Kill Themselves to Protect the Embryo

May 7, 2012

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active Bax (red) located at Golgi of human embryonic stem cells

While researching embryonic stem cells, scientists at the UNC School of Medicine discovered that by housing a protein called Bax in its active form in the Golgi, embryonic stem cells are primed to kill themselves if damage to their DNA makes them a threat to the developing embryo. Chapel Hill, North Carolina – Embryonic stem […]

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Measuring Motor Neuron Communication May Shed Light on Neurodegenerative Diseases

May 7, 2012

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system to measure communication between stem cell–derived motor neurons and muscle cells in a Petri dish

Neuroscientists from UCLA have developed a system to measure communication between stem cell–derived motor neurons and muscle cells in a Petri dish. They hope that they can use this method to better understand neurodegenerative diseases and to explore what happens in the early stages of motor neuron disease. In an effort to identify the underlying […]

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Reactivation of the Hippocampus Causes Memory Recall

March 23, 2012

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image of a transgenic mouse hippocampus

Lost memories may be a thing of the past as neuroscientists conduct research on mice to test memory recall. By using optogenetics and stimulating the hippocampus, researchers were able to show that memories reside in specific brain cells, which can be activated to recall the entire memory. Our fond or fearful memories — that first […]

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ML-SA1 Increases Trafficking and Reduces Lysosome Storage

March 13, 2012

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microscope image shows many enlarged lysosomes inside a mouse skin cell

New findings from cellular biologists at the University of Michigan may offer a new way to treat rare inherited metabolic disorders, as well as more common neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. The findings go on to suggest that the use of ML-SA1 as a potential drug could increase clearance of cellular waste by increasing […]

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DnaK Identified as Key Player of Protein Folding

March 9, 2012

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chaperone DnaK

A new published report from the Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry shows how different chaperones cooperate during the folding process. The scientists found that the Hsp70 protein DnaK binds to about 700 different protein chains as they are synthesized and mediates the folding of most of these protein chains. Proteins are the molecular building blocks […]

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Researchers Discover that Prions Play Role in Yeast Survival and Evolution

February 16, 2012

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researchers find prions in wild strains of yeast

While testing wild strains of yeast containing prions, researchers at MIT discovered that prions awaken dormant stretches of genes that can help the yeast survive environmental stresses and that those new traits can be passed on to offspring, contributing to evolution in an unexpected way. Misfolded proteins called prions are best known for causing neurodegenerative […]

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Researchers Use Human Neurons to Investigate Parkinson’s Disease

February 8, 2012

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Researchers Discover Genetic Origins of Parkinson’s Disease

Researchers at the University of Buffalo’s School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences used human neurons to help solve the genetic origins of Parkinson’s disease. Based a previous method in which they used induced pluripotent stem cells, their findings show that mutations disrupt the precise action of dopamine and produce more free radicals leading to Parkinson’s. […]

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Scientists Create Brain Cells from Skin Cells

February 7, 2012

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Brain cells created from patients’ skin cells

For the first time, scientists from the University of Cambridge have created cerebral cortex cells from a sample of human skin. The scientists were able to generate the cerebral cortex cells by taking skin biopsies from patients and then reprogramming the cells from the skin samples back into stem cells. They believe this research will […]

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