Plasma p-Tau217 Set to Transform Alzheimer’s Diagnostics

CONFERENCE COVERAGE 2020-07-29 Conference Coverage Suddenly, phospho-tau217 looks to be the most robust plasma biomarker for Alzheimer’s disease yet. That’s the general—and enthusiastic—consensus from two papers and several presentations at this year’s virtual Alzheimer’s Association ...

In APP Knock-In Mice, Spatial Mapping Circuitry Crumbles

RESEARCH NEWS 2020-07-24 Research News People with Alzheimer’s get lost in once-familiar places, often quite early in their disease. A study published July 13 in Neuron helps explain why. Researchers led by Kei Igarashi at the University of California, Irvine, reported that in ...

Neuronal SRPX2 Spoils Microglial Appetite for Synapses

RESEARCH NEWS 2020-07-24 Research News For better or worse, complement proteins tag synapses for elimination by microglia. A paper published July 13 in Nature Neuroscience identifies a neuronal protein that keeps this process in check. Researchers led by Gek-Ming Sia at the ...

Rogue APP Claim Embroiled in Contamination Concerns

RESEARCH NEWS 2020-07-17 Research News It sounded wild at the time: A Nature paper uncovered multiple copies of APP inserted into neuronal genomes, especially among people with sporadic AD. These interlopers purportedly derived from APP mRNA transcripts, which had been reverse ...

Does Huntington’s Disease Begin in the Womb?

RESEARCH NEWS 2020-07-17 Research News Huntington’s disease, like most neurodegenerative conditions, strikes adults. Yet children who carry the infamous causative triple repeat expansion have slightly smaller brains than noncarriers even while they are as functional as their ...

γ-Secretase Spotted Traveling Solo or in Pairs, Not in Big Groups

RESEARCH NEWS 2020-07-10 Research News CryoEM of frozen membranes has revealed its most intimate folds. Biochemistry of tissue extracts says it bundles up with other secretases. But how does γ-secretase, the all-important enzyme that cleaves Aβ42 from its precursor, truly behave ...

PET Tracer PI-2620 Detects 4R Tau Deposits

RESEARCH NEWS 2020-07-10 Research News Tau tracers have invigorated Alzheimer’s research, but they initially proved disappointing for other tauopathies. That is now changing, with at least two tracers, PI-2620 and APN-1607, that appear to bind specifically to the 4R tau deposits ...

Liver Enzyme Levitates with Exercise, Spurs Learning in Old Mice

RESEARCH NEWS 2020-07-10 Research News It’s no longer news that exercise tones the brain as well as the body, keeping cognition sharp with age and lowering the risk of Alzheimer’s disease. Exactly how this works remains murky, however. In today’s Science, researchers led by Saul ...

Biogen Asks FDA To Approve Aducanumab

RESEARCH NEWS 2020-07-08 Research News Biogen announced today that it had submitted a biologics license application to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for aducanumab, a therapeutic antibody developed to clear amyloid plaques from the brain. The Cambridge, Massachusetts, ...

With IL-33, Neurons Tempt Microglia to Nibble At Synapses

RESEARCH NEWS 2020-07-07 Research News Synaptic connections in the brain are highly plastic, continuously forming and disconnecting to help enshrine new experiences into memories throughout life. A study published in Cell on July 1 describes a mechanism involved. Researchers led ...

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 ...

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