home   genetic news   bioinformatics   biotechnology   literature   journals   ethics   positions   events   sitemap
  HUM-MOLGEN -> Genetic News | search  

Synaptic Damage In Alzheimer Disease

  July, 26 2005 11:32
your information resource in human molecular genetics
Researchers are not certain how Alzheimer disease produces the dementia and memory loss that are its major symptoms. However, a study in the August issue of Nature Neuroscience suggests a molecular mechanism that could shed light on this question.

An abnormal protein fragment, dubbed "Abeta", is suspected to be pivotal in the disease process because all the genetic mutations that cause the disease increase its accumulation. The catch is that accumulation of this protein in cellular aggregates does not correlate well with the timing or severity of symptoms. Researchers have proposed that symptoms may instead relate to accumulation of Abeta at synapses, the connections between neurons, because cognitive decline does correlate with synapse loss. Now, Paul

Greengard and colleagues report that Abeta triggers a cellular mechanism that removes so-called NMDA receptors from the cell surface in mutant mice, which express a protein that causes Alzheimer disease in humans. These receptors are essential for adjusting the strength of signals between nerve cells. When their levels decline, connections between nerve cells cannot be strengthened, as they usually are when we learn something. If these findings are confirmed in humans, they might provide a link between the Abeta fragment and memory loss in Alzheimer disease.

Author contact:
Eric M. Snyder
Email: ericmaltesnyder@gmail.com

Additional contact for comment on paper:
Rudolph Tanzi (Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Charlestown, MA, USA)
E-mail: tanzi@helix.mgh.harvard.edu

lso published online.

(C) Nature Neuroscience press release.

Message posted by: Trevor M. D'Souza

print this article mail this article
Latest News
Variants Associated with Pediatric Allergic Disorder

Mutations in PHF6 Found in T-Cell Leukemia

Genetic Risk Variant for Urinary Bladder Cancer

Antibody Has Therapeutic Effect on Mice with ALS

Regulating P53 Activity in Cancer Cells

Anti-RNA Therapy Counters Breast Cancer Spread

Mitochondrial DNA Diversity

The Power of RNA Sequencing

‘Pro-Ageing' Therapy for Cancer?

Niche Genetics Influence Leukaemia

Molecular Biology: Clinical Promise for RNA Interference

Chemoprevention Cocktail for Colon Cancer

more news ...

Generated by News Editor 2.0 by Kai Garlipp
WWW: Kai Garlipp, Frank S. Zollmann.
7.0 © 1995-2023 HUM-MOLGEN. All rights reserved. Liability, Copyright and Imprint.