Tuesday , June 28 2022

Has identified a new type of dementia confused so far with Alzheimer's Science


Ronald Reagan died at age 93 without remembering that he was president of the United States during the Cold War. Rita Hayworth died at the age of 68 without knowing she had starred guild. And Adolfo Suarez died at the age of 81, who forgot that he was the first democratic president in Spain after Franco's death. Every three seconds a new case of dementia is diagnosed in the world, with devastating results. More than a century after the discovery of Alzheimer's, there is still no treatment and the causes are not understood at all.

An international team of scientists is publishing a document today that can help explain why experimental treatments have failed one by one for years. The so-called Alzheimer's is not always Alzheimer's. The researchers, led by Peter Nelson of America, describe a new type of dementia, called LATE, which is probably as common as Alzheimer's in people over 80 years. It had gone unnoticed for decades. "There are more than 200 different viruses that can cause a cold, so why do we think that there is only one cause of dementia?" Nelson told the University of Kentucky in a statement.

"Many of the clinical trials of anti-Alzheimer's treatments fail because they include patients that have to be excluded," says María Angel Martin Requero.

Traditionally, the scientific community has pointed to two proteins linked to Alzheimer's: amyloid beta, which accumulates between neurons, and tao, which also reaches harmful levels and complex tangles in the brain. In the new type of dementia, LATE, researchers point to another protein, TDP-43, that has been involved in other diseases of the nervous system, such as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis.

"So far, the most common senile dementia is Alzheimer's disease, which has a peak incidence between 65 and 80 years," explains biochemist Jesús vvila, scientific director of the Center for the Study of Neurological Diseases Center (CIEN), Madrid. "Now, in this work, it is excellent, and agreed, that there is another pathology for the elderly, which means that as the average number of lives rises, new types of dementia appear," adds Avila.

The authors of the study argue that the signs of LATE are found in more than 20% of the brain analyzed in people over 80 years. "Many of the clinical trials of anti-Alzheimer's treatments fail because they include patients who are supposed to be included," says Marija Angel Martin Recaro, her laboratory at the Center for Biological Research (CSIC) in Madrid, investigating the role of TDP-43 in dementia. "LATE probably responds to treatments other than Alzheimer's," agrees psychologist Nina Silverberg of the National Institute on Aging in the United States.

CIEN's brain bank manager calls for increased donations

The team of researchers at Virginia Lee University of Pennsylvania has already noted in 2006 the presence of clusters of TDP-43 protein in the frontotemporal lobar degeneration of the brain, one of the main types of dementia near Alzheimer's, dementia of elongated bodies and vascular dementia. In the case of LATE, TDP-43 usually concentrates on the amygdala and the hippocampus, two areas of the brain are related to emotion and autobiographical memory.

Alberto Rábano spent years watching these accumulation of TDP-43 within the neurons. He leads the brain bank of the CIEN Foundation, with 155 organs donated by Alzheimer's patients in the center of Reina Sofia, in the Madrid neighborhood of Vallecas. "We've always said that Alzheimer's, from the age of 85, looks like a different disease," he says, "at these extreme ages, dementia is the sum of pathologies … we see Alzheimer's, Alzheimer's with Parkinson's, cerebrovascular disease, inclusions of TDP-43."

The authors of the new study, published in the professional journal the brain, Warn that there are more and more people over the age of 80 worldwide, therefore, "LATE has an increasing and unknown effect on public health". There is "an urgent need for an investigation," they warn. Rabano, on the other hand, takes the opportunity to appeal to the population: "Let them donate their brains."

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