-Dr.Kathy Johnson, PhD, CMC
An exciting discovery was recently made in regards to a new method for battling Alzheimer’s disease. Paul Greengard, an 84-year-old scientist, was featured in a New York Times article for his amazing findings. He found a new drug that could possibly halt, or slow down the disease, but there is still a lot to research. Many researchers are excited about Greengard’s new approach as it is completely different from the Eli Lilly drug that was recently banned.
New drugs, along with the Eli Lilly drug, target the enzyme gamma secretase to stop it from making the protein beta amyloid, which is thought to cause plaque in the brain for those with Alzheimer’s. By completely blocking this enzyme it causes harm. As a result, these new drugs have been worsening the symptoms of Alzheimer’s in testing subjects.
What Greengard found was a special protein that tells the enzyme to make beta amyloid. Blocking this protein has no effect on other gamma secretase activities as the newly discovered protein is only used for beta amyloid production. With that said, there is a drug already on the market that has been found to block beta amyloid and researchers say this could possibly be modified to work for the brain. Thanks to Mr. Greengard, we have another fascinating, new development in the cure for Alzheimer’s.