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Calcineurin

Critical link found between Down syndrome and Alzheimer's disease
http://keepingupwithds.blogspot.com/2011/01/researchers-find-critical-link-between.html

Researchers at the University of British Columbia and Vancouver Coastal Health Research Institute have discovered that the genetic mechanism which destroys brain cells is responsible for early development of Alzheimer's Disease in people with Down syndrome, and for development of Alzheimer's Disease in the general population – providing a potential new target for drugs that could forestall dementia in people with either condition.

The research, led by Dr. Weihong Song, Canada Research Chair in Alzheimer's Disease and a professor of psychiatry in the UBC Faculty of Medicine, found that excessive production of a protein, called Regulator of Calcineurin 1 (RCAN1), sets in motion a chain reaction that kills neurons in the hippocampus and cortex in people with Down Syndrome and Alzheimer's Disease.

But now that the culprit gene and protein have been identified, "we can develop therapies that interfere with the gene's ability to produce that protein, and hopefully short-circuit the destruction of brain cells," Dr. Song says.

See the attachment below.

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Paul Doney,
10 Feb 2011 18:43
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