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Prospective Alzheimer's Drug Builds New Brain Cell Connections, Washington State University Study



10/11/2012 7:47:41 AM

Washington State University researchers have developed a new drug candidate that dramatically improves the cognitive function of rats with Alzheimer's-like mental impairment. Their compound, which is intended to repair brain damage that has already occurred, is a significant departure from current Alzheimer's treatments, which either slow the process of cell death or inhibit cholinesterase, an enzyme believed to break down a key neurotransmitter involved in learning and memory development. Such drugs, says Joe Harding, a professor in WSU's College of Veterinary Medicine, are not designed to restore lost brain function, which can be done by rebuilding connections between nerve cells.

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