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Blockade of Learning and Memory Genes May Occur Early in Alzheimer's Disease
Myriam
Posted: Thursday, March 1, 2012 2:51 PM
Joined: 12/6/2011
Posts: 3326


From Alzheimer's Daily News:


(Source: NIH News) - A repression of gene activity in the brain appears to be an early event affecting people with Alzheimer's disease, researchers have found. In mouse models of Alzheimer's disease, this epigenetic blockade and its effects on memory were treatable.

"These findings provide a glimpse of the brain shutting down the ability to form new memories gene by gene in Alzheimer's disease, and offer hope that we may be able to counteract this process," said Roderick Corriveau, Ph.D. at the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke.

Li-Huei Tsai, Ph.D., and colleagues found that a protein called histone deacetylase 2 (HDAC2) accumulates in the brain early in the course of Alzheimer's disease in mouse models and in people with the disease. In the mice, the increase in HDAC2 appears to produce a blockade of genes involved in learning and memory. Preventing the build-up of HDAC2 protected the mice from memory loss.

"We think that the blockade of gene expression plays a very important role in the cognitive decline associated with Alzheimer's disease," said Tsai. "The good news is that the blockade is potentially reversible."

Go to full story: http://www.nih.gov