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Alzheimer's Drug Shows Promise
Posted: Monday, June 4, 2012 5:18 PM
Joined: 12/6/2011
Posts: 3326

From Alzheimer's Daily News:

(Source: Fayetteville Observer) - The key to successfully treating - and maybe reversing - Alzheimer's disease may be closer than we realize.

Dr. Ben Bahr, a biotechnology professor at the University of North Carolina at Pembroke, has discovered a drug that he says can slow and even reverse the progression of the disease.


Lysosomes act as "garbage disposals," ridding brain cells of the toxic proteins, Bahr said. But as a person ages, lysosomes become less active, causing the build-ups of Abeta proteins called plaques.


"We are all losing synapses with age, but Alzheimer's patients are losing them at a much faster rate." "If we can speed up lysosomal digestion of Abeta and slow down synaptic pathology, we can restore those memory transmissions."

Bahr explained that the PADK compound he is working with did just that in laboratory tests of cultured brain tissue affected by Alzheimer's, as well as in genetically altered mice with the human gene linked to Alzheimer's.


It took three years to get the patent, he said, and it could take three to four more years before the drug is ready for human testing. Bahr estimated that the entire process could cost from $200 million to $300 million. Bahr and his research team are now scouring the medical industry for grants and investors.


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