Creating a free account will enable you to subscribe to our daily and weekly email newsletters, as well as customize your reading experience to show only the categories most relevant to you.
Signing up only take a few minutes, so why not give it a try and see what you've been missing out on.
Scientists have discovered the use of a simple single-celled amoeba to understand the function of human proteins in causing Alzheimer's disease.
The new study, published in the Journal of Cell Science by researchers at Royal Holloway, University of London and the Institute of Psychiatry King's College London, reveals how the amoeba will enable a better understanding of the function of these Alzheimer's disease-associated proteins in the cell without the need for testing on animals, with the ultimate aim of developing improved treatments for the degenerative disease.
Mutations in presenilin proteins cause inherited forms of Alzheimer's disease, and these proteins also play a major role in the age-related onset of the condition.
However, understanding the role of these proteins is difficult, since cells lacking the proteins are non-viable.
Presenilin proteins have been extensively analysed and animals are commonly used in this research area, but these experiments are problematic since deletion of the proteins in animal cells causes a loss of viability and blocks the development.
"This discovery allows us to examine the role for the human presenilin 1 protein, without the use of animal testing. It is amazing that so simple an organism lends itself to the study of such a complex disease," says Professor Robin Williams from the School of Biological Sciences at Royal Holloway.
"This work on the amoeba Dictyostelium shows we can successfully use this simple model to try to better understand the normal roles of other proteins and genes involved in Alzheimer's disease and other forms of neurodegeneration," added Dr Richard Killick from the Institute of Psychiatry King's College London.
Royal Holloway, University of London
Article adapted by Medical News Today from original press release. Source:
Royal Holloway, University of London
Please use one of the following formats to cite this article in your essay, paper or report:
Royal Holloway, University of London. "Researchers discover a simple amoeba holds the key to better treatment for Alzheimer's disease." Medical News Today. MediLexicon, Intl., 24 Jan. 2014. Web.
12 Mar. 2014. <http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/releases/271643>
Royal Holloway, University of London. (2014, January 24). "Researchers discover a simple amoeba holds the key to better treatment for Alzheimer's disease." Medical News Today. Retrieved from
Please note: If no author information is provided, the source is cited instead.
If you write about specific medications, operations, or procedures please do not name healthcare professionals by name.
For any corrections of factual information, or to contact our editorial team, please use our feedback form. Please send any medical news or health news press releases to:
Note: Any medical information published on this website is not intended as a substitute for informed medical advice and you should not take any action before consulting with a health care professional. For more information, please read our terms and conditions.
This page was printed from: http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/releases/271643.php
Visit www.medicalnewstoday.com for medical news and health news headlines posted throughout the day, every day.
© 2004-2014 All rights reserved. MNT (logo) is the registered trade mark of MediLexicon International Limited.