Sumary of New research into Alzheimer’s treatment and potential vaccine:
- The research published in Molecular Psychiatry found that an antibody-based Alzheimer’s treatment and the protein-based vaccine developed by the team reduced Alzheimer’s symptoms in mouse models with the disease.
- New Alzheimer’s treatment shown to reduce symptoms The amyloid beta protein in plaques in the brain is commonly associated with Alzheimer’s disease;
- however, the antibody and vaccine both target a different soluble – a form of a protein that is thought to be highly toxic.
- Amyloid beta protein exists as a highly flexible, string-like molecule in solution, which can join to form fibres and plaques.
- Professor Thomas Bayer, from the University Medical Center Göttingen, said: “In clinical trials, none of the potential treatments which dissolve amyloid plaques in the brain have shown much success in terms of reducing Alzheimer’s symptoms.
- We identified an antibody in mice that would neutralise the truncated forms of soluble amyloid beta but would not bind either to normal forms of the protein or to the plaques.
- When the Leicester research group looked at how and where this ‘humanised’ antibody, called TAP01_04, was binding to the truncated form of amyloid beta, they found the amyloid beta protein was folded back on itself, in a hairpin-shaped structure.
- Professor Mark Carr, from the Leicester Institute of Structural and Chemical Biology at the University of Leicester, explained: “This structure had never been seen before in amyloid beta.