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Brain protein linked with Alzheimers

PHOENIX, Sept. 16 (UPI) -- U.S. medical investigators say they have discovered a link between the brain protein KIBRA and Alzheimer's disease.

The medical scientists at the Translational Genomics Research Institute in Phoenix said their finding might lead to new treatments for the memory-robbing disease. The discovery builds on a previous TGen-led study that showed a genetic link between KIBRA and memory in healthy adults.

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In the new study, researchers said they found carriers of a memory-enhancing type of the KIBRA gene had a 25 percent lower risk of developing Alzheimer's disease.

"This research suggests that KIBRA, and possibly some of the proteins with which it interacts, may play a role in Alzheimer's disease,'' said Matthew Huentelman, the study's senior author.

The findings are reported in the online edition of the journal Neurobiology of Aging.

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