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San Diego: The Curious Case of ApoE, Cholesterol, and Cognition

CONFERENCE COVERAGE 2010-12-08 Conference Coverage Cholesterol not only clogs up arteries and leads to heart disease, but it can be bad for your brain as well. Evidence for cholesterol’s role in Alzheimer’s disease has been growing in recent years, and many cardiovascular risk factors ...

Tau Modification—Move Over Phosphate, Make Room for Acetylation

RESEARCH NEWS 2011-03-25 Research News Before forming neurofibrillary tangles, tau may pick up a few acetyl groups along with the slew of phosphates it brings to the pathological inclusions in tauopathies such as Alzheimer’s disease and frontotemporal lobar dementia (FTLD). ...

Taos: Not the Usual Suspects: PARIS et al. Mark Progress in PD

CONFERENCE COVERAGE 2011-04-28 Conference Coverage In the movie Casablanca, protagonists Rick and Ilsa would always have Paris. Parkinson’s disease researchers always will as well, if a different one. Parkin interacting substrate (PARIS) was not born of the movie screen, but of a ...

San Francisco: Gladstone Institute Hosts Tau Powwow

CONFERENCE COVERAGE 2011-05-12 Conference Coverage Never mind that it featured 29 of the world’s top tau experts reporting the latest on their favorite protein. The recent symposium at the Gladstone Institute of Neurological Disease (GIND), San Francisco, ran less like a formal meeting ...

San Francisco: Tau—Time to Shine as Therapeutic Target?

CONFERENCE COVERAGE 2011-05-17 Conference Coverage At the “Tau and Tauopathies: Pathogenic Mechanisms” workshop held 28-30 March 2011 at the Gladstone Institute of Neurological Disease (GIND) in San Francisco (see Part 1), speakers voiced a sense of welcome relief, perhaps akin to ...

Making (Anti)sense of Rare Huntington’s Variant

RESEARCH NEWS 2011-05-24 Research News They walk clumsily, slur their speech, and show similar brain pathology as people with Huntington’s disease (HD). And, like HD sufferers, these rare individuals with Huntington’s disease-like 2 (HDL2) have the same type of genetic mutation ...

Is Motor Neuron Troublemaker Just a Bad Driver?

RESEARCH NEWS 2011-06-11 Research News The protein survival of motor neuron (SMN), whose absence causes spinal muscular atrophy, has a new charge: an mRNA needed to make neuromuscular junctions. Together with the RNA-binding protein HuD, SMN picks up the mRNA for cpg15 (candidate ...

Uppsala: Is Tau Immunotherapy Taking Off?

CONFERENCE COVERAGE 2011-06-29 Conference Coverage Targeting extracellular Aβ with immunotherapy is one thing, but could antibodies even drive the clearance of tau, a predominantly intracellular protein? In the last few years, scientists have turned their attention to vaccinating ...

Uppsala: Immunotherapy—Not Just for AD Anymore

CONFERENCE COVERAGE 2011-07-09 Conference Coverage As immune-based therapies targeting Aβ and tau are beginning to show promise for the treatment of Alzheimer’s, what about other disorders of the nervous system? At the 2nd International Conference on Neurodegenerative Disorders: ...

ALS: Mutant Enzyme Does Not Hang Around, But Does Find Mitochondria

RESEARCH NEWS 2011-07-29 Research News Although it seems that many deficiencies can lead to amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, the enzyme superoxide dismutase 1 (SOD1) has long received the lion’s share of attention. Mutations in SOD1 cause disease in a subset of people with familial ...

Hedgehog Protocol Turns Supersonic in Faster Route to Motor Neurons

RESEARCH NEWS 2011-08-02 Research News It takes sonic hedgehog, retinoic acid, and more than a month to turn stem cells into a few motor neurons for study or, eventually, transplantation. For researchers keen to understand amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and other motor neuron ...

ALS—A Polyglutamine Disease? Mid-length Repeats Boost Risk

RESEARCH NEWS 2010-08-28 Research News Researchers have mediated a merger of sorts between two distinct neurodegenerative conditions—amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and spinocerebellar ataxia (SCA)—and the proteins that cause them. Both, it seems, involve TDP-43, first associated ...

St. Louis: ApoE—A Clearer View of its Role In AD?

CONFERENCE COVERAGE 2010-07-05 Conference Coverage The role of ApoE receptors was high on the agenda at “ApoE, ApoE Receptors and Neurodegeneration,” a one-day symposium held 7 June 2010 at Washington University, St. Louis, Missouri. These cell-surface proteins enable a flurry of ApoE ...

Mutant SOD1 Inflames If Not Quenched by Autophagy

RESEARCH NEWS 2010-07-02 Research News Misfolded proteins can gum up the cell’s works by glomming together and boosting inflammation. The cell, in turn, fights back by destroying the aggregated proteins. In the case of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, the malformed miscreant is ...

Aβ STATs—Transcription Factor Implicated in Toxicity

RESEARCH NEWS 2010-06-02 Research News Though it has been decades since amyloid-β (Aβ) was implicated in the pathology of Alzheimer disease (AD), it is still not exactly clear how the peptide is toxic. Its modus operandi may involve triggering intracellular signaling cascades ...

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