New Rodent Knock-Ins Carry Humanized Wild-Type APP

RESEARCH NEWS 2020-10-27 Research News Creating better, more reliable rodent models of Alzheimer’s disease has been a struggle for researchers. On October 19 in Molecular Neurodegeneration, scientists led by Bart De Strooper at KU Leuven, Belgium, debuted new mouse and rat knock ...

Clocking In: Timestamped RNA Charts Transcriptional History

RESEARCH NEWS 2020-10-27 Research News Single-cell RNA sequencing—a methodology very much in vogue these days—captures a snapshot of gene expression; alas, it misses all of the temporal dynamics of how long ago the different genes became activated. After all, scientists have to ...

Better than Crystal Clear? Cryo-EM Achieves Atomic Resolution

RESEARCH NEWS 2020-10-23 Research News Monochromator? Check. Second-generation spherical aberration corrector? Check. Titan Krios G3 electron microscope? Check. And not to forget the Falcon 3 direct electron detector. Check. It may sound like science fiction, but this new ...

Largest Alzheimer GWAS in African Americans Finds New Variants

RESEARCH NEWS 2020-10-22 Research News African Americans have about double the risk of dementia as their non-Hispanic white peers. How much of this is genetics, how much is environment? With the biggest genome-wide association study on African Americans to date, researchers led ...

Do Endothelial Cells Spur Capillaries to Grow in Alzheimer’s Brain?

RESEARCH NEWS 2020-10-22 Research News Endothelial cells tend to get short shrift in studies of Alzheimer’s, but new results now implicate these cells in the toxic brain environment of people with this disease. In the September 28 Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, ...

Blunt Instruments: α-Synuclein Antibodies Poorly Distinguish Forms

RESEARCH NEWS 2020-10-16 Research News The exquisite specificity of antibodies powers neurodegenerative research, enabling reliable assays, precise diagnostics, and targeted therapeutics. Unless … some antibodies are not as specific as has been thought. In the September 22 ...

No Skin Off Your Nose: New Way to Diagnosing Parkinson’s?

RESEARCH NEWS 2020-10-15 Research News As with many neurodegenerative diseases, Parkinson’s is often misdiagnosed. Biomarkers can make the diagnosis more accurate, but existing options such as brain scans and spinal taps are expensive or invasive. Now, two new studies suggest ...

Curbing Fatty Acids Means No Parkinson’s—If You Are a Mouse

RESEARCH NEWS 2020-10-14 Research News Could treating Parkinson’s disease be as simple as controlling one’s lipid metabolism? In the September 29 Annals of Neurology online, researchers led by Dennis Selkoe, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Boston, report that an inhibitor of ...

Single-nucleus RNA Sequencing Misses Activation of Human Microglia

RESEARCH NEWS 2020-10-09 Research News In the presence of amyloid plaques, microglia in mouse and human brains react differently—or do they? In the September 29 Cell Reports, researchers led by Mark Fiers and Bart de Strooper at KU Leuven, Belgium, cast doubt on previous findings ...

Excitotoxicity: Could a New Class of Drug Stop a Bad TRP?

RESEARCH NEWS 2020-10-09 Research News For decades, the duality of NMDA glutamate receptors has perplexed researchers. Essential players in synaptic activity, plasticity, and learning, these receptors can also trigger a toxic intraneuronal cascade that decimates neurons in ...

NIA Weighs in on Neurodegenerative Disease Transmissibility

RESEARCH NEWS 2020-10-06 Research News An expert panel convened by the NIH found little evidence that Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, and similar neurodegenerative diseases can be transmitted in a prion-like fashion, such as after contact with biological specimens or contaminated ...

New ACE Variant Speeds Neurodegeneration in Alzheimer’s Mice

RESEARCH NEWS 2020-10-02 Research News Taking certain hypertension medications has been linked to a lower risk of Alzheimer’s disease—but does that happen via lower blood pressure, or some other way? In the September 30 Science Translational Medicine, researchers led by Robert ...

Virtual Meetings Try Out Different Formats

COMMUNITY NEWS 2020-10-02 Community News The COVID-19 pandemic has derailed scientific meetings, preventing travel and in-person gatherings. The research community is adapting by moving meetings online, experimenting with different approaches and formats. For example, the 2020 ...

VCP Coding Mutation Causes a Tauopathy With Vacuoles

RESEARCH NEWS 2020-10-02 Research News Being a segregase, it’s the job of valosin-containing protein (VCP) to straighten out a myriad of poorly folded proteins. We can now add tau to that list. In a paper published in Science on October 1, researchers led by Edward Lee at the ...

FDA Advisors Will Take up Aducanumab on November 6

RESEARCH NEWS 2020-10-02 Research News The FDA’s Peripheral and Central Nervous System Drugs Advisory Committee will meet virtually on November 6, 2020, to discuss Biogen/Eisai’s biologics license application for aducanumab. This follows the agency’s decision last summer to grant ...

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