Monday 18 December 2017

'Neurostatin' drugs could help prevent Alzheimer's

Photo: PA
Photo: PA

John von Radowitz

Millions of people could one day be given a "neurostatin" drug to guard against the early development of Alzheimer's, new research suggests.

One drug, an anti-cancer agent called bexarotene, has already been shown to prevent early brain changes linked to the disease in laboratory tests.

Scientists are in the process of identifying others that might be more effective.

The drugs have been dubbed "neurostatins" because they could be used in the same way statins are to reduce cholesterol and curb the risk of heart disease.

In this case they would be taken as a preventative strategy to keep out the seeds of Alzheimer's, accumulating clumps of toxic protein in the brain.

Professor Michele Vendruscolo, from Cambridge University, who is leading the research, said: "This in terms of an approach for Alzheimer's disease would be the equivalent of what statins do for heart conditions."

Irish Independent

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