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GWAS, GWAX: BioRxiv Hosts Bonanza of Alzheimer’s Genetics

RESEARCH NEWS 2018-04-26 Research News If the mountain of unpublished genome-wide association studies on BioRxiv are any indication, Alzheimer’s scientists have a nice new set of risk loci to explore. Three large AD GWAS unearthed 13 new loci by expanding upon the previous GWAS ...

Liquid Phase Transition: A Deluge of Data Points to Multiple Regulators

RESEARCH NEWS 2018-04-21 Research News For better or worse, liquid-liquid phase separation (LLPS) happens. It’s beneficial when RNA and RNA-binding proteins (RBPs) form dynamic liquid assemblies required for many cell functions. It’s pathological when the same assemblies yield ...

Stuck in the Past? Microglial Memories Dictate Response to Aβ

RESEARCH NEWS 2018-04-19 Research News Microglia spend their entire lives cloistered in the brain, but that doesn’t stop them from experiencing the outside world vicariously. According to a study published April 11 in Nature, microglial “memories” of systemic inflammatory events ...

Genetics Tie ALS into the Frontotemporal Dementia Spectrum

RESEARCH NEWS 2018-04-19 Research News How genetically similar is amyotrophic lateral sclerosis to other neurodegenerative diseases? Researchers led by Celeste Karch, Washington University, St. Louis, and Rahul Desikan, University of California, San Francisco, used genome-wide ...

Does Amyloid Accumulate After a Single Sleepless Night?

RESEARCH NEWS 2018-04-18 Research News Amyloid-β can build up in the brain after just one sleepless night. So say researchers led by Nora Volkow at the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, Bethesda, Maryland. Using positron emission tomography, they found higher ...

Do Immune Responses Promote, or Prevent, Parkinson’s Disease?

CONFERENCE COVERAGE 2018-04-18 Conference Coverage Researchers keep turning up unexpected links between Parkinson’s disease and the immune system. At the first Advances in Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s Therapies Focus Meeting (AAT-AD/PD), March 15–18 in Turin, Italy, Michael ...

Parkinson’s Treatments Go After Genetic Targets

CONFERENCE COVERAGE 2018-04-17 Conference Coverage Current treatments for Parkinson’s disease target motor symptoms, and do nothing to halt progression or address other aspects of the disease. To get beyond this state of affairs, researchers are targeting the underlying disease ...

New Definition of Alzheimer’s Hinges on Biology, Not Symptoms

RESEARCH NEWS 2018-04-13 Research News After years of edging closer to a biological, biomarker-based diagnosis of Alzheimer’s, researchers formally took the leap this week. A committee assembled by the National Institute on Aging and the Alzheimer’s Association published a new ...

Is Shape of Aβ an Early Blood Biomarker for Alzheimer’s?

RESEARCH NEWS 2018-04-12 Research News Within the past nine months, researchers developed assays that correlate reduced concentration of soluble Aβ in the blood with amyloid plaques in the brain. Now a group led by Klaus Gerwert, Ruhr-University Bochum, Germany, suggests that ...

Newborn Neurons in the Adult Brain: Real Deal, or Glial Imposters?

RESEARCH NEWS 2018-04-12 Research News Deep in the hippocampus, are new neurons born throughout life? Just when scientists were about to reach some consensus that the answer was yes, two recent studies disagree. In the April 5 Cell Stem Cell, Maura Boldrini and colleagues at ...

Alzheimer’s Incidence is Rising, Not Falling, a Researcher Says

CONFERENCE COVERAGE 2018-04-11 Conference Coverage In the last few years, numerous studies have reported that dementia incidence is falling in the developed world. The drop in new cases has been attributed to better public health, in particular improved blood pressure control, but this ...

In ALS, Do Motor Neurons Go Out with a Bang or a Whimper?

RESEARCH NEWS 2018-04-11 Research News Do motor neurons that die during ALS go out quietly, or with their synapses blazing? In the March 27 eLife, researchers led by Marin Manuel of Université Paris Descartes suggest the former, at least for lower motor neurons. They report that ...

Fighting RAGE No Help to Alzheimer’s Disease Patients

RESEARCH NEWS 2018-04-10 Research News Yesterday, publicly traded vTv Therapeutics announced the termination of both parts of its STEADFAST clinical study, which had been testing the small molecule azeliragon in patients with probable Alzheimer’s. According to topline data from ...

News From the PET Front: Early Amyloid Networks and Tau Mystery

CONFERENCE COVERAGE 2018-04-10 Conference Coverage The advent of PET to image Alzheimer’s pathology in people has handed researchers new tools for staging disease during life, but PET also presents mysteries. At the first Advances in Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s Therapies Focus Meeting ...

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