Can Diabetes Meds Lessen Alzheimer's Symptoms?

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People with Alzheimer’s disease who are treated with diabetes medications have significantly fewer brain markers of the disease than those not treated with diabetes drugs, say researchers at Mount Sinai in New York City who conducted a study that was published in PLOS One.

According to the researchers, older adults with diabetes often experience brain changes — hallmark signs of Alzheimer's. In prior studies involving brain tissue, people who had both Alzheimer’s and diabetes had fewer brain lesions than people with Alzheimer’s who didn’t have diabetes, suggesting that diabetes drugs may have a protective effect.

For the Mount Sinai study, the researchers compared the brain capillaries (tiny blood vessels) and brain tissue of 34 people with Alzheimer’s disease and type 2 diabetes who had been treated with insulin or oral diabetes medication to the brain capillaries and tissue of 30 people who had had Alzheimer’s, but not diabetes, and 19 people without Alzheimer’s or diabetes. They determined that biomarkers of Alzheimer’s in blood vessels and brain tissue were substantially lower in the first group.

Sourced from: PLOS One