Protein triggers Alzheimer's memory loss

IRVINE, Calif., March 2 (UPI) -- A protein that builds up on neurons in the brain marks the onset of memory decline associated with Alzheimer's disease, researchers said Wednesday.

Protein blockage linked to Alzheimer's

CHEVY CHASE, Md., Feb. 25 (UPI) -- A traffic jam of abnormal proteins in the brain may both signal the onset of Alzheimer's disease and make it worse, researchers at a Maryland institute say.

Marijuana may help stem Alzheimer's disease

MADRID, Feb. 22 (UPI) -- A Spanish study has found the active component of marijuana may reduce inflammation and help prevent the mental decline associated with Alzheimer's disease.

Telemedicine used to treat Indians

DALLAS, Feb. 10 (UPI) -- Doctors in Dallas are using telemedicine for follow-up appointments with Alzheimer patients in the Choctaw Nation in southeast Oklahoma.

Test may aid early detection of Alzheimers

EVANSTON, Ill., Jan. 31 (UPI) -- U.S. scientists said they have developed the first diagnostic test capable of detecting Alzheimer's disease early in its onset.

Dietary changes may slow Alzheimer's

NEW YORK, Jan. 12 (UPI) -- U.S. researchers have found that a low-carbohydrate diet that reduces total calorie intake by 30 percent slowed the development of Alzheimer's disease in mice.

Curry may keep Alzheimer's at bay

LOS ANGELES, Dec. 29 (UPI) -- A spice used for thousands of years, curry, may be a powerful new weapon in fighting Alzheimer's Disease, researchers said.

Smell may predict Alzheimers

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico, Dec. 13 (UPI) -- A study presented Monday in Puerto Rico suggested Alzheimer's Disease can be predicted using a patient's sense of smell.

Compound in apples could ease Alzheimer's

ITHACA, N.Y., Nov. 16 (UPI) -- U.S. researchers said a compound abundant in apples and other fruits and vegetables can protect brain cells against damage linked to Alzheimer's disease.

Cholesterol drug helps with Alzheimer's

SUN CITY, Ariz., Nov. 9 (UPI) -- The cholesterol-lowering drug atorvastatin slowed down mental decline and helped depressive symptoms of Alzheimer's disease, a U.S. study found.

Study: Potential cause of Alzheimer's seen

LEXINGTON, Ky., Nov. 2 (UPI) -- A Kentucky scientist has identified a chemical that may cause of Alzheimer's disease.

Tea seen to improve memory abilities

NEWCASTLE UPON TYNE, England, Oct. 26 (UPI) -- British researchers have determined regular tea-drinking can improve a person's memory, and may offer clues to fighting Alzheimer's disease.

Aging brain changes not pre-Alzheimer's

ST. LOUIS, Sept. 30 (UPI) -- Certain brain changes that are common in normal aging are not the beginnings of Alzheimer's disease, a researcher says.

Alzheimer's linked to career choices

CLEVELAND, Aug. 9 (UPI) -- U.S. researchers have found a link between the mental demands of an occupation and later development of Alzheimer's disease.

Minorities hardest hit by Alzheimer's

PHILADELPHIA, July 21 (UPI) -- Alzheimer's disease begins almost seven years earlier in U.S. Latinos than whites and affects more African-Americans than whites, U.S. researchers said.
Page 22 of 25
Alzheimer's Disease
Rudolph Tanzi, Ph.D., testifies about Alzheimer's disease before the Senate Special Committee on Aging on Capitol Hill in Washington on May 14, 2008. Tanzi is director of Generics and Aging Research Unit, Mass. General Institute for Neurodegenerative Diseases and professor of neurology at Harvard University. (UPI Photo/Roger L. Wollenberg)

Alzheimer's disease (AD), also called Alzheimer disease, Senile Dementia of the Alzheimer Type (SDAT) or simply Alzheimer's, is the most common form of dementia. This incurable, degenerative, and terminal disease was first described by German psychiatrist and neuropathologist Alois Alzheimer in 1906 and was named after him. Generally it is diagnosed in people over 65 years of age, although the less-prevalent early-onset Alzheimer's can occur much earlier. An estimated 26.6 million people worldwide had Alzheimer's in 2006; this number may quadruple by 2050.

Although each sufferer experiences Alzheimer's in a unique way, there are many common symptoms. The earliest observable symptoms are often mistakenly thought to be 'age-related' concerns, or manifestations of stress. In the early stages, the most commonly recognised symptom is memory loss, such as difficulty in remembering recently learned facts. When a doctor or physician has been notified, and AD is suspected, the diagnosis is usually confirmed with behavioural assessments and cognitive tests, often followed by a brain scan if available. As the disease advances, symptoms include confusion, irritability and aggression, mood swings, language breakdown, long-term memory loss, and the general withdrawal of the sufferer as their senses decline. Gradually, bodily functions are lost, ultimately leading to death. Individual prognosis is difficult to assess, as the duration of the disease varies. AD develops for an indeterminate period of time before becoming fully apparent, and it can progress undiagnosed for years. The mean life expectancy following diagnosis is approximately seven years. Fewer than three percent of individuals live more than fourteen years after diagnosis.

The cause and progression of Alzheimer's disease are not well understood. Research indicates that the disease is associated with plaques and tangles in the brain. Currently used treatments offer a small symptomatic benefit; no treatments to delay or halt the progression of the disease are as yet available. As of 2008, more than 500 clinical trials were investigating possible treatments for AD, but it is unknown if any of them will prove successful. Many measures have been suggested for the prevention of Alzheimer's disease, but their value is unproven in slowing the course and reducing the severity of the disease. Mental stimulation, exercise, and a balanced diet are often recommended, as both a possible prevention and a sensible way of managing the disease.

This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License.
It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Alzheimer's Disease."
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