New research has very promising results in the treatment of the most common form of dementia in mice. It has shown that the Alzheimer’s disease can be fully cured with just a common pain drug, which can completely reverse the symptoms of the mental disorder.
Alzheimer’s is a mental disorder that affects memory, though and behavior patterns for which currently there no know cures and the treatments can only prolong the quality of life for a limited time. Every year around the world, almost 7.5 million people are diagnosed with the disease, while the United States has a total of five million people who suffer from it. It is especially prevalent in elderly people, one in three seniors exhibit different grades of symptoms.
The results of the study were published in journal Nature Communications by a team of researchers led by Dr. David Brough from the University of Manchester, in the UK. Scientists administered to mice an anti-inflammatory drug called mefenamic acid, commonly used to relieve period pain. The study used twenty mice genetically engineered to have the symptoms of Alzheimer’s. After the drug was administered to them, researchers found they mice had no memory loss and no inflammation of the brain while a group of ten mice which were treated with a placebo in a similar manner, still exhibited the same symptoms all the mice originally had.
According to Brough:
“There is experimental evidence now to strongly suggest that inflammation in the brain makes Alzheimer’s disease worse. Our research shows for the first time that mefenamic acid, a simple Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drug can target an important inflammatory pathway called the NLRP3 inflammasome, which damages brain cells.”
The new way to target this pathway coupled with the results from the mice trials made the scientists optimistic about the potential results of human trials, though the results may vary drastically.
The Director of Research and Development at Alzheimer’s Society stated that:
“These promising lab results identify a class of existing drugs that have the potential to treat Alzheimer’s disease by blocking a particular part of the immune response. However, these drugs are not without side effects and should not be taken for Alzheimer’s disease at this stage – studies in people are needed first.”
The fact that the pain drug is already available and its effects are known, could shorten the development period of a cure for the disease.
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