Alzheimer’s Prion Connection Deepens | July 7, 2014 Issue - Vol. 92 Issue 27 | Chemical & Engineering News
 
 
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Volume 92 Issue 27 | p. 7 | News of The Week
Issue Date: July 7, 2014

Alzheimer’s Prion Connection Deepens

Neuroscience: Like prions, hallmark Alzheimer’s molecules fold into various shapes with distinct behaviors
Department: Science & Technology
News Channels: Biological SCENE
Keywords: prion, Alzheimer’s, amyloid, strain, propagation, clinical trials, therapeutics, mad cow disease

In the past few years, scientists have demonstrated that molecules involved in Alzheimer’s disease behave like the prion proteins that cause mad cow disease. That is, the Alzheimer’s molecules—amyloid-β peptide and tau protein—misfold in the brain and then coerce other molecules to do the same. The misfolded molecules then clump and damage nerve cells.

Alzheimer’s researchers are now following this trail and finding other similarities between prion proteins and amyloid-β and tau. For example, like . . .

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