A recent study has contradicted previous research regarding the use of benzodiazepines and dementia. Prior research findings have claimed that the use of benzodiazepines, which are drugs commonly used to treat anxiety and insomnia, raises the risk of dementia amongst seniors. However, a study conducted at the School of Pharmacy in the University of Washington aimed to find out whether or not the continued use of these drugs were associated with faster cognitive decline or an increased risk of dementia.
Research from Tel Aviv University has shown promise for a new treatment that may be used for Alzheimer’s disease.
In the brain’s hippocampus, where memories are processed, hyperactivity is associated with Alzheimer’s disease. This study reveals that activity of a particular hormone receptor known as insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1R) and its controversial relation to Alzheimer’s disease is one of the contributors to the hyperactivity in the hippocampus.
Recent research has suggested that online brain games and cognitive training do not actually prevent dementia onset or incidence rates. The authors of the study argue that while these activities can train isolated cognitive functions and improve them, cognition is incredibly complex and many forms of dementia cause decline in all areas and functions.
A longitudinal study that followed 535 people aged 81 until death showed that the function of a particular gene was associated with the slowing of decline in memory and cognitive ability. This gene, known as brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), was found in higher levels in the brains of participants who showed slower decline in brain function.