Gladstone Institute Researchers Identify New Drug Target For Alzheimer's Disease

Researchers at the Gladstone Institute of Neurological Disease have identified a potential new way to stop brain cell death related to Alzheimer's disease. Working with cell cultures, the scientists investigated how amyloid beta proteins, which build up in the brain tissue of people with Alzheimer's disease, kill neurons. The cell cultures were established from brain tissue of laboratory rats. Study findings showed that amyloid beta could be prevented from causing neuronal cell death with a compound called resveratrol, which is also found as a natural ingredient in red wine. "Our study suggests that resveratrol and related compounds may protect against neuronal loss associated with Alzheimer's disease," explains senior author Li Gan, PhD, a staff research investigator at the Gladstone Institute of Neurological Disease and an assistant professor of neurology at UC San Francisco. "This could certainly open up new avenues for drug development." The research results are reported in the December 2 issue of the Journal of Biological Chemistry.

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