Active vaccination of ankyrin protein to reduce beta amyloid
Published 13 June 2012
Results of a study exploring the active vaccination of ankyrin G (AnkG) in mice to reduce levels of beta-amyloid which is thought to cause Alzheimer’s disease, has today been published.
The study published in Molecular Psychiatry explored how the presence of AnkG antibodies in the blood of people with Alzheimer's disease affected the progression of their symptoms. Findings indicated that people with more antibodies declined more slowly. The research also showed that immunisation of mouse models of Alzheimer's disease reduced the level of beta-amyloid in the brain and improved the health of brain cells. However, no effect on behaviour of the immunised mice was seen.Alzheimer's Society comment:
'Finding a vaccine against Alzheimer's disease would be an exciting and life changing matter for people living with the condition. This study has identified an interesting new protein that appears to be linked to progression of symptoms, but this research is in very early stages. The AnkG vaccination reduced levels of beta-amyloid in mice, but there was no improvement in symptoms of Alzheimer's disease. Therefore, further research is needed in mice to see if AnkG can affect symptoms, before it would have potential to be tested in humans.
Research like this is essential if we are to develop treatments and ultimately a cure. This spring the Prime Minister promised to double investment into dementia research. We must now ensure this money is used to make the biggest difference possible for people with dementia.'
Dr Anne Corbett
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