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Prevention is better than cure. Also for Alzheimer's disease!
Date:2/1/2013

tant to strike before the brain starts to degenerate", according to Dennis J. Selkoe. "And according to the most recent data, for patients with Alzheimer's disease this can be as early as 20 to 25 years before the first memory problems are confirmed." Therefore, according to Selkoe, it is not surprising that the most recent clinical studies on people with mild to moderate dementia did not result in the anticipated breakthrough: in these studies, we only start treatment once the brain has already suffered irreparable damage.

The fruits of 30 years of research

"Thirty years of Alzheimer's research has taught us a lot", according to Selkoe. "We have unraveled a complex network of dozens of bio-molecules and cell components that are involved in one way or another in the development and the evolution of Alzheimer's Disease. A field of research that still provides new elements and new insights every day." It is as if the scientists are completing a complex puzzle. Each new piece gives a better insight into the whole of the puzzle. To date we have succeeded in placing hundreds of pieces of the puzzle, but nobody knows exactly how big the whole puzzle will be. They started 30 years ago with laying just two pieces: the β-amyloid protein (involved in the formation of the Alzheimer's plaques) and the tau protein (the important component of Alzheimer's tangles).*

Medicines

The pharmaceutical industry has tested roughly eighty Alzheimer medicines. Some in more advanced phases of study than others. There has been no significant breakthrough yet. However, Selkoe feels that these studies have taught us a lot. "The failures have resulted in disappointment for patients, their families, doctors and scientists. However, these efforts are not lost. On the contrary, they have taught us what might work and what will not and the steps that we need to take from here. Based on these studies, we can set out new directions to target this condit
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Contact: Kris Van der Beken
kris.vanderbeken@vib.be
32-473-783-435
VIB (the Flanders Institute for Biotechnology)
Source:Eurekalert

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