Alzheimer’s Disease : A New Research Proves To Be A Major Step

According to the study done on Alzheimer’s disease, proves more than 40 genes are being linked to the disease for the first time. This study is being labeled as a “Landmark” that offers hope for diagnosing and treating the ailment. 

Alzheimer disease

Scientists from eight countries, including the specialists from Cardiff University, took part in the study done on 111,000 Alzheimer people. 

What Does The Study Say About Alzheimer’s Disease? 

The findings say there are many factors linked to a specific protein that’s involved in the inflammation. 

Prof Julie Williams, center director at the UK Dementia Research Institute at Cardiff University, says the study is a major leap in the study of Alzheimer’s and the 30 years culmination of 30 years of work.

Prof Williams also said the genetics will continue in helping us identify some specific disease mechanisms allowing us to target therapeutically.  

Alzheimer disease


What Is Expected From The Study? 

Even today Alzheimer is a common cause of dementia. Hopes are tied, the research will help in letting the genetics to identify those who are more at risk of developing the disease even before it appears.  

However, Prof Williams also said, at the present 60-80% of the disease risk factors are based on the genetics study. And they are continuing to seek out the biological causes behind it. This will help in developing the much-needed treatment that millions across the world need today. 

Though Prof Williams also said dressing issues that affect our lifestyle like smoking, diet influence and exercising, need to be dealt with in a positive way so the risks can be avoided. The study also identified new risk variants that are significantly associated with Alzheimer disease progression. You can read the study in the Journal Nature Genetics. 

Alzheimer disease
Take a step towards healthier lifestyles

The Future Of Alzheimer’s Disease 

The latest study provides scientists with the new targets needed for medication and treatments. And to help in changing lifestyles so the risks of this deadly brain disease can be reduced. 

Even though Dr. Richard Issacson, director of the Alzheimer’s Prevention Clinic in the Center for Brain Health at Florida Atlantic University’s Schmidt College of Medicine was not part of the study, he said, it’s the future of Alzheimer’s disease. He also said the paper has added tools to our toolbox. Hopefully we’ll be able to precisely target Alzheimer’s disease with it. 

Pathological Phenomena Highlight 

So far in the disease, two pathological brain phenomena already have been well documented. Namely, accumulation of amyloid-beta peptides and protein Tau modification that aggregates of which are found in the neurons. 

The scientists have confirmed the pathological processes’ importance as well. The analysis of the various genome regions confirm some of them are implicated in Tau protein function and in amyloid peptide production. 

Alzheimer disease

Furthermore, the analysis also states a dysfunction of innate immunity and the microglia (an immune cell that’s present in the central nervous system. It acts as a trash collector by eliminating toxic substances) action towards Alzheimer disease. 

And finally, the study also has shown for the first time, a tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-alpha)-dependent signals in its involvement in the disease. 

Risk Score For The Alzheimer’s Disease 

Based on these findings, the researchers have devised a risk score of the genetics. This helps in better evaluating which cognitive impaired patient will eventually develop Alzheimer disease within the next three years. Though this tool is still not ready for clinical practice, it could be useful when you need to set up therapeutic trials. This helps to categorize participants according to the risks they face and help in improving the medications evaluation as well. 

Other Facts Identified From The Study Include..

As said above, 75 genes have been identified and are linked in increasing the risk of Alzheimer disease. Out of which 33 are already known. Years of research is confirmed to have played a major step in the role of Tau and amyloid-beta.

Out of the new 42 genes found connected to Alzheimer, most of them are clustered into several suspected pathways for the development of the disease. Though they are not confirmed. The body’s immune response is also one such pathway that’s designed to protect our body from harmful germs. 

Other facts are a number of genes associated with the immune regulator known as LUBAC. This regulator is needed by our body to activate genes and prevent the death of cells. The study also states the immune cells in the brain, microglia – tasked with taking trash out – clears the damaged neurons. They play a key role in helping people with Alzheimer’s.

According to the study some of the newly discovered genes might make microglia to become less efficient. Therefore accelerating the disease. 

The study also shows another key pathway in which the genes involved are associated with inflammation. The body actually uses the inflammation as a defense mechanism and kills off the pathogens. That’s not all, it also removes the damaged cells. 

In the study one protein that stood out was the tumor necrosis factor alpha. This factor is made by the immune system and regulates inflammation. A cluster of genes was also found associated with TNF. 

Even though the original role of the chemical is to gather the body’s defenses for fighting, it’s also the culprit of many autoimmune diseases by turning the body against itself. Resulting in ailments like type 1 diabetes, Crohn’s disease and rheumatoid and psoriatic arthritis. 

Other complicated gene interactions were also found, all of which illustrate Alzheimer’s is actually a malfunctioning disease. It’s made up of different pathologies and varies from person to person. 

The study proves the Clinicians saying, if you’ve seen one Alzheimer’s person, you’ve seen them all. But now it’s clear, the disease progresses and presents itself differently in different people. 

The Common Cause

Allowing them to do chores makes them feel normal

Another insight the study gave was that other brain disorders like Lewy body disease, frontotemporal dementia, Parkinson’s, and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis might be having the same underlying genetic basis. The study proves taken as a whole, the data emphasize the potential continuum between these neurodegenerative diseases.

According to Dr. Kellyann Niotis, neurologist specializing in Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease prevention at Weill Cornell Medicine and NewYork-Presbyterian said the medical and scientific community was viewing the neurodegenerative diseases as different and distinct for many years. 

Alzheimer disease

He also said, this emphasizes there’s a larger continuum between the process of these diseases then we really knew or understood before. 

What The Future Holds? 

Williams also said even young people can have similar underlying genetic risks. This can lead to Alzheimer’s in one person and Parkinson’s in another. She also said though it’s less relevant, what’s important is in understanding what’s wrong with their body. So, we should start early and target the pathway. 

Isaacson said nowadays people want to know answers to questions like what can be done about it and what are their chances of being safe from it. Perhaps not today, but in the near future, we will be able to evaluate from the person’s likelihood on whether they will develop Alzheimer’s or not or any other brain disorder. That will further help in finding a more precise medical and lifestyle management.