All posts by Alzforum, Tom Fagan

Does TauRx Drug Work by Oxidizing Tau?

21 February 2013. In 2008, Rember™, aka methylene blue, created a stir when the drug’s sponsors reported that it slowed cognitive decline in a Phase 2 trial for Alzheimer’s disease, while other scientists questioned that interpretation (see ARF related news story). The dye had been used for decades in various industrial, research, and therapeutic settings. […]

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Dementia Four Times More Likely in Pro Football Players

Players who spent at least five seasons battling it out in the National Football League (NFL) are three times more likely to die of a neurodegenerative disease than is the general population. Their risk for dying with dementia or amyotrophic lateral sclerosis hits fourfold. These sobering statistics appeared in the September 5 Neurology online. “Those […]

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AD-Springfield 2012: Stockholm: New Strategies for Immunotherapy

Immunotherapy continues to be a major therapeutic strategy for Alzheimer’s disease, and more recently for other neurodegenerative diseases as well. At the 12th International Stockholm/Springfield Symposium on Advances in Alzheimer Therapy, researchers discussed some new immune-based approaches for therapy, including those capitalizing on the body’s own antibodies for passive immunotherapy and novel antigens for active […]

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Fluorescence—Not Just for Protein Anymore, Now RNA, Too

Move over, green and related fluorescent proteins. As reported in today’s issue of Science, at least one lab bench is aglow with fluorescent RNAs. Researchers led by Samie Jaffrey at Cornell University, Ithaca, New York, developed a range of RNA molecules, or aptamers, that tightly bind fluorescent compounds similar to that in green fluorescent protein […]

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Uppsala: Immunotherapy—Not Just for AD Anymore

See Part 1 and Part 2. Read the entire series. 9 July 2011. As immune-based therapies targeting Aβ and tau are beginning to show promise for the treatment of Alzheimer’s, what about other disorders of the nervous system? At the 2nd International Conference on Neurodegenerative Disorders: Immunotherapy and Biomarkers, which took place 26-27 May 2011 […]

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First Phase 2 Success for Gene Therapy in Parkinson’s

Injecting millions of viral particles deep into the brain may sound nefarious, but when the particles are relatively benign and carry the gene for the enzyme glutamic acid decarboxylase (GAD), then the strategy may have the makings of a therapy for Parkinson’s disease (PD). As reported in the March 17 Lancet Neurology online, PD patients […]

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WEBINAR: Stress Granules and Neurodegenerative Disease—What’s the Scoop?

The formation of cytoplasmic inclusions called stress granules is one of nature’s many ways of coping with adverse situations. It appears that these inclusions sequester non-essential messenger RNAs, allowing cells to focus on making proteins, such as chaperones, that protect against a variety of stressful insults. Recent work suggests that stress granules may figure in […]

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New Strategy Nets Biomarkers for AD, and More

It met with little enthusiasm when originally proposed, and took more than three years to perfect, but a new strategy for detecting serum antibodies could have important ramifications for Alzheimer’s disease diagnostics. Like many groundbreaking ideas, Thomas Kodadek’s was profoundly simple—use a huge library of synthetic antigens to capture circulating antibodies that are specific to […]

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Sorting Progranulin With Sortilin—New Clues to FTLD Pathology

Progranulin, a raw form of granulin (GRN), landed center stage of neurodegeneration research four years ago (see ARF related news story), when scientists discovered that loss-of-function mutations in the GRN gene cause a specific form of dementia—frontotemporal lobar degeneration with ubiquitin inclusions (FTLD-U). Fascination with the protein grew when studies later identified GRN missense mutations […]

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