New Research Shows Promise for Alzheimer’s Disease Treatment
September 18, 2006
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 18, 2006
CONTACT: Suzanna Cisneros Martinez, firstname.lastname@example.org
LUBBOCK – Promising new research shows a common link between cardiovascular disease
and Alzheimer’s disease. Studies have shown that blood vessels derived from the brain
of people with Alzheimer’s disease secrete inflammatory proteins and that these proteins
are also implicated in angiogenesis or the ability to form new blood vessels.
The current study, “Angiogenic proteins are expressed by brain blood vessels in Alzheimer’s
disease,” is published in the September issue of the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease.
Paula Grammas, Ph.D., executive director of the Texas Tech University Health Sciences
Center Garrison Institute on Aging and senior author of the study, found that blood
vessels from Alzheimer’s-diseased brains, but not controls, expressed high levels
of angiogenic factors.
These results, as well as her previously published work, have led to the idea that
in response to a persistent stimulus, or injury, brain endothelial cells in the blood
vessel wall become activated and perhaps “stuck” in the angiogenic mode.
“This gives us new and hopefully valuable information as to how we may possibly intervene
therapeutically as previous studies suggest that some drugs are beneficial to inhibit
angiogenesis,” Grammas said.
If future research continues to demonstrate a causal link between the angiogenic events
and Alzheimer’s disease progression, that would argue strongly for a new therapeutic
approach for this disease.
Grammas said the results are exciting because the angiogenic brain endothelial cells
are a novel, unexplored therapeutic target, and several antiangiogenic drugs are currently
in use in Phase III clinical trials. Thus, clinical studies with angiogenesis inhibitors
could be rapidly designed and implemented in Alzheimer’s patients.
“This research adds to the body of work by scientists linking cardiovascular health
and Alzheimer’s disease,” Grammas said. “Hopefully future clinical trials with therapeutic
targets based on this research may improve the quality of life for Alzheimer’s patients
and their families.”
The article appears in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease, Volume 10:1 (www.j-alz.com),
Sept. 2006, published by IOS Press.
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