A Vaccine for Alzheimer’s Disease

January 29, 2016 | By Lorenzo Mejia

Scientists at the Research Institute for the Care of Older People at the Royal Hospital in Bath have developed a medication that is showing significant promise in clinical trials for a potential vaccine to slow the progression of Alzheimer’s. Alzheimer’s causes knots to form in the transport system of the brain, immobilizing nutrients from moving in cells and causing them to die. The treatment attacks the tangles or knots in the brain that inhibit the cell pathways from remaining open. Researchers have developed a vaccine called tau that kills the proteins in the tangles, slowing the progression of Alzheimer’s. Currently, there is no cure for the disease, only medications to improve symptoms. A second vaccine targets the amyloid plaque in the brain. Tangles are thought to be more powerful than the amyloid plaque build-up. While the amyloid vaccine is thought to be for early stage Alzheimer’s, the tau vaccine has been very effective in patients at more advanced stages. More studies and patients are needed to further the research.

 

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