Blood-Brain Barrier Surprise: Proteins Flood into Young Brain

RESEARCH NEWS 2020-07-02 Research News The blood-brain barrier keeps most plasma proteins out of the brain, but becomes leaky with age and in Alzheimer’s. Or so scientists thought. In the July 1 Nature, researchers led by Tony Wyss-Coray at Stanford University turn this idea on ...

Women and Men Differ in Their Genetic Risk for Alzheimer’s Progression

RESEARCH NEWS 2020-07-02 Research News Researchers are beginning to assess how genetic variation influences sex differences in Alzheimer’s disease. True, women who have an ApoE4 allele are more likely to develop Alzheimer’s than are male carriers, but what about the many other ...

Does a Stimulating Childhood Stem Amyloid Plaques in Golden Years?

RESEARCH NEWS 2020-07-02 Research News A childhood rich with intellectual stimulation may help the brain resist the onslaught of Alzheimer’s disease decades later, according to a study published June 29 in JAMA Neurology. Researchers led by David Bennett at Rush University ...

RBFOX1 Gene Tied to Amyloidosis in Preclinical Alzheimer’s

RESEARCH NEWS 2020-06-30 Research News Massive genome-wide association studies for Alzheimer’s disease have primarily correlated genetic variants with clinical diagnosis, a rubric that is fraught with uncertainty. In a GWAS published June 22 in JAMA Neurology, researchers led by ...

Too Phatal: How Microglia, Astrocytes Snuff Out Dying Neurons

RESEARCH NEWS 2020-06-26 Research News Conventional wisdom holds that microglia are the main phagocytes of the brain, mopping up dead cells and debris. The reality is more complicated, according to scientists led by Jaime Grutzendler at Yale School of Medicine in New Haven, ...

In Mice, Activating TREM2 Tempers Plaque Toxicity, not Load

RESEARCH NEWS 2020-06-26 Research News Another anti-TREM2 antibody looks like a promising candidate for treating Alzheimer’s disease. In the June 24 Journal of Experimental Medicine, researchers led by Marco Colonna at Washington University, St. Louis, and Tina Schwabe, Alector ...

Does RhoA Rein in Microglial Madness?

RESEARCH NEWS 2020-06-26 Research News The task of restraining microglia’s neurotoxic tendencies may fall to a small GTPase called RhoA, according to a study published June 23 in Cell Reports. Scientists led by João Relvas, University of Porto, Portugal, found that deleting RhoA ...

In the Wake of COVID-19: Trials Interrupted, Delayed, Cancelled

COMMUNITY NEWS 2020-06-23 Community News Part 2 of 2 As Alzheimer’s research comes to, scientists are taking stock of the damage. In the academic world, the main cost was time (see Part 1  of this story). For most clinical studies, the damage was more tangible, with at least a ...

Alzheimer’s Research Restarts, Cautiously

COMMUNITY NEWS 2020-06-23 Community News Part 1 of 2 Three months after it shuddered to a halt to contain coronavirus, Alzheimer’s research is powering up again. How did it weather the shutdown? Some three dozen researchers around the world told Alzforum how the pandemic has cost ...

Tau: Why Alzheimer’s Worsens Fast in Some, Slowly in Others

RESEARCH NEWS 2020-06-22 Research News Why do some people with AD slide rapidly into severe dementia, while others decline gradually over more than a decade? Part of the answer could come down to which biochemical forms of tau inhabit a person’s brain, suggests a study published ...

Boost or Block TREM2? Either Way, Therapy May Need Careful Timing

RESEARCH NEWS 2020-06-22 Research News Ever since the R47H partial-loss-of-function variant of the microglial receptor TREM2 was found to increase risk for Alzheimer’s disease, scientists have wondered if boosting TREM2 signaling would be protective. Alas, exploiting this ...

Does Common Structure Explain Cross-Seeding of Fibrils?

RESEARCH NEWS 2020-06-19 Research News Amyloid-β is not the only component of the senile plaques that mark Alzheimer’s disease. Are the others mere bystanders that get caught in a web of Aβ fibrils, or are they more nefarious, instigating growth of these deposits? For the protein ...

Human Blood-Brain Barrier Model Blames Pericytes for CAA

RESEARCH NEWS 2020-06-15 Research News The full complexity of the blood-brain barrier, with its different cell types acting together, has been difficult to model in vitro. In the June 8 Nature Medicine, researchers led by Li-Huei Tsai at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, ...

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