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Forget me not: Novel target shows promise in treating Alzheimer’s and related dementias

Researchers remain perplexed as to what causes dementia and how to treat and reverse the cognitive decline seen in patients. In a first-of-its-kind study, researchers at the Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) and Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC), Harvard Medical School discovered that cis P-tau, a toxic, non-degradable version of a healthy brain protein, is an early marker of vascular dementia (VaD) and Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Their results, published on June 2 in Science Translational Medicine, define the molecular mechanism that causes an accumulation of this toxic protein. Furthermore, they showed that a monoclonal antibody (mAb) that targets this toxic protein was able to prevent disease pathology and memory loss in AD- and VaD-like preclinical models. Additionally, this treatment was even capable of reversing cognitive impairment in an AD-like preclinical model.

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