Amyloid beta is an insoluble protein responsible for the amyloid plaques in the brain tissue of people with Alzheimer’s disease. However, there is little knowledge on how these proteins lead to memory loss. A recently published study by the University of Sussex examined how amyloid beta affected the healthy brains of pond snails. The researchers observed the effect of the protein by administering it to the snails after a food-reward training task.
On Friday, May 22nd, the Canadian Centre for Aging and Brain Health Innovation (CC-ABHI) at Baycrest Health Sciences officially launched and it is projected to be up and running this fall. The $123.5-million centre will concentrate on the causes of cognitive decline in older adults. The CC-ABHI will operate as a national hub and network that will take “world-class innovations from the drawing board to the market,” said federal Finance Minister and Eglinton-Lawrence MP Joe Oliver.
The actual cause of Alzheimer’s disease is unknown, but it is suspected that amyloid in brain plaques or tangles of a protein named tau may have something to do with it. A study that is testing an anti-amyloid drug – Eli Lilly & Co.’s solanezumab – is now adding tau brain scans in their study to see how both of the signature hallmarks of Alzheimer’s disease start to build up in older adults before any memory loss occurs. "The combination of amyloid and tau is really the toxic duo," predicted Dr.
People with Down Syndrome are more susceptible to developing Alzheimer’s disease than the rest of population due to the extra copies of normal genes on chromosome 21 that they carry. This extra chromosome codes for a beta amyloid precursor protein. Beta amyloid fragments produces plaques that build up in the brain. During their 30s, the process of Alzheimer’s disease starts to set in motion in the brains of people with Down Syndrome. By their 50s, almost all will experience the warning signs of the disease, and around 70% will develop dementia.
Health Quality Ontario conducted a study to examine the current state of antipsychotic medication use in 604 long-term cares homes in Ontario. It was discovered that zero to 67 per cent of residents, aged 65 years or older, are prescribed with antipsychotics after they are diagnosed with psychosis, dementia or other illnesses that cause agitated behaviours. Joshua Tepper, president and CEO of Health Quality Ontario, said “it’s not as simple as saying the drugs are overused.