Alzheimer’s Disease

MBF Bioscience > Additional Subject Matter  > Alzheimer’s Disease

Researchers at Colorado College may have identified a new neuropathological hallmark of Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE). Their findings, published in the Journal of Comparative Neurology, describe overall dendritic atrophy across cortical neurons and greater morphological variability in CTE brains compared to controls. A neurodegenerative disorder characterized by late-onset symptoms like depression, confusion, and memory loss, CTE is caused by repeated impacts to the brain. The disease...

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Scientists at Western Sydney University used Stereo Investigator and Neurolucida 360 to quantify cells in a mouse model of neuroinflammation after feeding mice two different curcumin formulations.

Some inflammation is normal in a healthy mammalian brain. But as the brain ages, processes can break down, leading to chronic neuroinflammation. This can develop into Alzheimer’s disease, dementia, and other neurodegenerative diseases.

Scientists at Prof. Gerald Muench’s lab, at Western Sydney University say that curcumin, a substance in the spice turmeric, has the potential to lower inflammation in the brain.

In two recent studies, the researchers, led by Dr. Erika Gyengesi, used Stereo Investigator and Neurolucida 360 to reconstruct and quantify glial cells in the brains of mice after feeding them two different curcumin formulations.

“MBF Bioscience’s software helped us immensely to differentiate and follow the changes caused by chronic microglia activation in various areas of the brain during aging, but also to quantify the effects of different modified curcumin products, which otherwise would have been impossible,” said Dr. Gyengesi.

In a study published February, 2020 in Scientific Reports: “Effects of a solid lipid curcumin particle formulation on chronic activation of microglia and astroglia in the GFAP-IL6 mouse model,” (Ullah et al, 2020), the researchers describe positive results after feeding GFAP-IL6 mice — a mouse model of chronic neuroinflammation — 500 ppm of Longvida®Optimised Curcumin (LC) over a course of six months.

Effect of MC on the morphological characteristics of microglial cells in the hippocampus. (A) Morphological assessment of reactive and non-reactive microglia in the hippocampus. (B–H) Microglia in the inflamed mice have significantly larger soma area, soma perimeter and processes compared with the WT mice. High dose MC significantly reduced soma area and soma perimeter compared with GFAP-IL6 mice. However, the same high dose MC significantly increased the number of nodes compared with the GFAP-Il6 mice. It has no effect on the convex area, convex perimeter, dendritic length and number of processes. Significance = *p < 0.05, **p < 0.001, ***p < 0.0001, ****p < 0.0001.

Stereological analysis of the mouse brains revealed lower levels of activated microglia in the hippocampus (26 percent less) and in the cerebellum (48 percent less) in GFAP-IL6 mice that were fed the curcumin diet, compared to GFAP-IL6 mice fed a normal diet. They also quantified astrocytes — another cell type activated in response to neuroinflammation, finding decreased levels in the hippocampus (30 percent less). TSPO+ cells — another marker of brain inflammation, decreased as well (by 24 percent in the hippocampus and 31 percent in the cerebellum) in the experimental mice compared to controls.

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Neurolucida 360 Used to Analyze Dendrites and Dendritic Spines Amyloid plaques and tau tangles are the hallmarks of Alzheimer’s disease (AD) pathology, but synapse loss is what causes cognitive decline, scientists say. In a paper published in Science Signaling, researchers at the Herskowitz Lab, at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, used Neurolucida 360 to analyze spine density and dendritic length in hAPP mice — a...

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Astrocytes (GFAP) in the dentate gyrus of a mouse hippocampus. Image courtesy of Dr. Ahmad Salehi, Stanford University.  It is well known that physical exercise eases the symptoms of neurodegenerative disorders like Alzheimer’s disease and helps to prevent their onset. Researchers at Stanford University are working on figuring out how it happens. In their study, published in the journal Brain Structure and Function, scientists in Dr. Ahmad...

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[caption id="attachment_6094" align="alignright" width="231"] Micrograph of cholinergic neurons in the nucleus basalis of Meynert. Image from Wikipedia.[/caption]   Cholinergic neurons degenerate at devastating rates in Alzheimer's disease, but Dr. Mark Tuszynski and his team at the University of California, San Diego may have found a way to slow the decline. Their study, published in JAMA Neurology, reports that nerve growth factor gene therapy increased the size, axonal sprouting, and signaling of cholinergic neurons...

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Alzheimer's disease is the most common form of dementia. Most cases occur in people over 65, and are not genetically inherited. Roughly five percent of Alzheimer's patients suffer from familial Alzheimer's disease (FAD), an uncommon form that tends to strike sooner, and is related to a genetic predisposition - most commonly, a mutation in the presenilin 1 gene (PS1). A recent study, led by Dr. Miguel...

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