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Alzheimers Toxin May Be Key To Slowing Disease
Australian scientists say they have identified a toxin which plays a key role in the onset of Alzheimer's, raising hope that a drug targeting the toxin could be developed to slow the degenerative brain disease.
The toxin, called quinolinic acid, kills nerve cells in the brain, leading to dysfunction and death, the scientists said.
"Quinolinic acid may not be the cause of Alzheimer's disease, but it plays a key role in its progression," Alzheimer's researcher Dr Karen Cullen from the University of Sydney said in a statement. "It's the smoking gun, if you like."
"While we won't be able to prevent people from getting Alzheimer's disease, we may eventually, with the use of drugs, be able to slow down the progression."
Alzheimer's is a brain-destroying disease that affects millions of people around the world. As the population gets steadily older, experts estimate numbers will balloon to as many as 16 million in the United States alone by 2015.
More than 200,000 people have Alzheimer's disease in Australia and the number is expected to rise to 730,000 by 2050.
Outward symptoms start with memory loss, which progresses to complete helplessness as brain cells are destroyed. In the brain, neurons die as messy plaques and tangles of protein form.
The Alzheimer's research team from Sydney's St Vincent's Hospital, the University of Sydney and Japan's Hokkaido University found quinolinic acid neurotoxicity in the brains of dementia patients.
Quinolinic acid is part of a biochemical pathway called the kynurenine pathway which is also found in other brain disorders, including Huntington's disease and schizophrenia.
The scientists said there were several drugs in an advanced stage of development for other conditions which targeted this pathway and that these drugs, which still need to be tested, could be used to complement other treatments for Alzheimer's.
"Building on what we've found and others have found, it's likely that they would have significant effect," said Professor Bruce Brew, director of neurology at St Vincent's Hospital.
Pharmaceuticals: The Next Frontier in America?s War on Drugs
America's war on drugs, which has been fought in the opium fields of Afghanistan and the cocaine plantations of Columbia, will have to reinvent itself to combat what is set to be America's biggest drug abuse problem, pharmaceuticals. One in five American's, nearly 48 million, have used prescription drugs for non-medical purposes at least once in their lives. The current past month misuse rate among Americans is 6.2 million. According to a recent white paper by Carnevale Associates, this rate of use is already higher than the historical highs of both cocaine and heroin epidemics.
Root Canal Therapy: Frequently Asked Questions
How to Remove the Psychological Addiction to Smoking - and Start to ENJOY Giving Up Smoking!
Cetyl Myristoleate for Arthrtis: Science or Speculation
There are a lot of fabulous stories about Cetyl Myristoleate (also known as CMO or CM) floating across the Internet. Mine is one of them. There have been a number of articles published in little known journals or magazines. There have been four small booklets published. One making fantastic claims, all four filled with anecdotal evidence but offering no real research to back up the claims. There are a number of Doctors sharing the results they are having with their patients but so does every other wonder-working product. The question is, are there any scientific studies to back up any of these claims? The answer is yes. To date there are several patient studies and two double blind studies completed. I will mention the three most prominent below.
Five Secrets of High Blood Pressure Treatment
Thirty percent of human population has a high blood pressure and everyone has a 90% risk to acquire it during the rest of the life. As a result, half of all human deaths are due to the major complications of high blood pressure, mainly stroke and heart attack.
Lunesta is a newly released sleeping pill. Marketed as a revolutionary sleep aid, Lunesta is the only medication approved by the FDA for long term treatment of insomnia symptoms. Although Lunesta is a quality medicine that has already helped many people cure their insomnia symptoms and get a better night's sleep, there is something you should know before your buy Lunesta.
Death by Fluoride
A wee bit of fluoride makes teeth and dentists happy, we're told. Dr. Happy Tooth's smiley face turns into a frown when his favorite decay buster is busted as a killer. Anything in large doses kills, bristles Drill & Fill, DDS, even Dihydrogen Monoxide, they often tease. Ha, ha, get it ? water ? H2O. Stop picking on fluoride, they say, you make us look bad.
Christopher Reeve To Have Promoted Basement Lab
Chrisopher Reeve has died. But his vision of a "Cure" has not. Mr. Reeve, who became a quadripilegic after a horse riding accident in 1995, was best known as advocate for stem cell research which promises cures for spinal cord injuries. Shortly before his death he had planned to get behind a little known biotech driven offshore By President Bush's restrictions on stem cell research. The "Cure" didn't reach Christopher Reeve in time. But a cure for the paralysis that plagued the star ?and ultimately led to his death may be in the test tubes in a basement lab in a small carribean island.
7 Tips to Keep Your Fluid Down on Dialysis
As any dialysis patient will tell you, keeping your fluid gain between dialysis sessions in check is not only important to your long term health, it is a major factor in your immediate well-being.
Over The Counter Pain Medication: How To Choose The Right Drugs
With the recent front-page news about the possible hazards of pain medications, you may be taking a look at your over-the-counter (or OTC) pain medications with a wary eye. While all drugs, including those you don't need a prescription for, can be dangerous, some basic knowledge can help you avoid the pitfalls for the pain relief you need.
Pediatric Emergency Contact Notifications Made Easier
For the head of the trauma department at one of America's top pediatric facilities, Chicago's Children's Memorial Hospital, having to notifying parents that their children have been the victims of trauma or identify pediatric Jane Does, is an every day occurrence. But just because they look like they're handling it well, doesn't mean that it ever becomes routine.
Blood Pressure Treatment: High and Low Blood Pressure Tips and Medication!
High blood pressure is on the rise worldwide. But, doctors believe that small lifestyle changes can go a long way in preventing this silent killer.
Talking Money with Your Doctor: Drugs and Tests for Less
Would you buy groceries without knowing their prices? I suspect not. You probably compare the costs of different boxes of cereal in order to get the best deal. But when it comes to medical care, do you even ask for the prices involved?
Are Drug Companies Destroying The U.S. Health Care System?
The U.S. government's annual bill for healthcare spending ? $3,925 per person ? significantly exceeds that of all other nations. Despite this, our current health care system is increasingly failing both patients and medical practitioners. Of 13 nations, the U.S. is last for neonatal and infant mortality, last for years of potential life lost, 10th for age-adjusted mortality, 11th and 12th for female and male life expectancy respectively. Chronic degenerative diseases ? heart disease, cancer, arthritis, obesity, etc. ? are at epidemic levels and create the ideal long-term customers to grow the medical industry.
Warning: Taking Bextra May Harm Your Health
Another Vioxx-like occurrence may be on the rise, as warnings about Pfizer's arthritis pain drug, Bextra, continue to mount.
Bulk Forming Drugstore Laxatives
There are five basic types of drugstore laxatives you should be aware of. Some of these laxatives can be dangerous to use. In addition, some of these laxatives are combinations of these five types, which are designed to create an effective constipation product. In making this combination, a product is created that can be even more dangerous to your health.
Fioricet: Migraine Remedy Medication Or Just Another Headache?
We've all had garden variety headaches from time to time. Getting sleep, drinking water, or taking aspirin or Tylenol lets you squash these "tension headaches" (as doctors call them) quickly and easily.
Eliminate Agonizing Hand Pain Quickly and Easily!
According to Dr. Nathan Wei, "The hand and wrist are the mirrors of disease." While the cause of hand pain can be a localized problem, hand pain can also be the presenting sign for other diseases.
Anxiety Management With Prescription BuSpar: Don?t Worry, Be Happy
We've all had one of those weeks: the washing machine overflows, the dog forgets his housetraining and the toddler her toilet training, the boss is going through a divorce and making everyone miserable. And you feel like you just don't know how to handle it all.
?Get Rid of Tendonitis ? Now!? Advice From An Expert?
Tendons are ropes of fibrous tissue that connect muscles to bones. It is this connection that permits joint motion. When muscles contract, they pull on the tendons which cause the bones to move. In order for tendons to glide they move inside a lubricated sheath of tissue that is lined with synovial tissue. This synovial tissue is the same type of tissue that lines the inside of joints. Tendonitis refers to a condition where the sheath through which a tendon glides becomes inflamed. This leads to severe pain. The pain usually gets worse with use of the affected joint. However, when tendonitis becomes severe, there may be pain at rest.
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