Drug Reverses Alzheimer's in Rats
An experimental drug was able to reverse the symptoms of Alzheimer's disease in rats, according to researchers at Midwestern University in Illinois.
For the study, rats with Alzheimer’s who also showed signs of increased oxidative stress and impaired learning from the condition were injected with a drug known to bind to ETB receptors, which are crucial in brain development. When they are stimulated, they have been known to protect the nervous system.
The study suggests that the chemical improved memory deficit in the rats by 50 to 60 percent and reduced oxidative stress by 45 to 50 percent.
It also sparked recovery of certain Alzheimer's damaged areas of the brain by developing new blood vessels and neuronal cells.
This study is the first to show intravenous injection of this drug can reverse the neurological effects of Alzheimer's disease in an animal model. However, it is unclear whether these results will translate to humans as well.
An estimated 5.3 million Americans currently have Alzheimer's. According to the Alzheimer's Association, every 67 seconds, someone in the US develops the disease. The condition is also one of the leading causes of death in the U.S., with the Alzheimer's Association estimating that 700,000 people will die with the disease in 2015.
This Week's Slice of History: 1st U.S. Incubator Baby: Sept, 7, 1888