Alzheimer's Disease (AD)

Beta Blockers taken for High Blood Pressure might prevent Alzheimer’s Disease and Dementia

Stethoscope - BSN

(Best Syndication News) - Researchers found that men who took beta-blockers for treating high blood pressure were less likely to have brain shrinkage and other anomalies that could signal Alzheimer’s disease or other kinds of dementia.

The Honolulu-Asia Aging Study involved 774 elderly Japanese-American men. After the men died, autopsies were conducted. Six-hundred-ten out of 774 men had high blood pressure or were being treated with high blood pressure medication.

Less than half, around 350, of the men had been taking blood pressure medication; 15 percent took only beta blocker medication, 18 percent took beta blockers with one or more other hypertensive medications, and the remaining took another type of blood pressure medication with no beta blockers.

TFP5 compound shows promise to reverse Alzheimer’s Disease

Credit: National Cancer Institute Daniel Sone (Photographer) - PD

(Best Syndication News) - Researchers injected TFP5 molecules into mice with Alzheimer’s disease and were able to restore their memory function. The new findings were published in the January 2013 issue of the FASEB Journal.

Scientists at the National Institutes of Health injected TFP5 molecules into mice that had a disease similar to the Alzheimer’s disease in humans. To measure against a control group, other brain diseased mice were injected with a placebo. The mice that received the TFP5 molecules had their symptoms reversed and they had regained their memory while the placebo group continued to decline as expected. The TFP5 did not demonstrate any toxic side effects in the mice.

Extended Radiation Exposure could speed up Alzheimer’s disease in Astronauts

Credit: National Cancer Institute Unknown Photographer - PD

(Best Syndication News) - A recent animal study suggests that cosmic radiation could speed up the onset of Alzheimer’s disease in astronauts traveling on deep space missions. The scientists published their findings in the journal PLOS ONE.

Senior study author, M. Kerry O’Banion, M.D., Ph.D., a professor in the University of Rochester Medical Center (URMC) Department of Neurobiology and Anatomy, explained the cancer health risk factor due to radiation exposure in space has already been acknowledged. However, their researchers wanted to see if there was a risk for developing cognitive problems from the radiation exposure, which could lead to an accelerated onset of Alzheimer’s disease.

The Earth’s magnetic field provides protection from much of the radiation, but when astronauts travel into space they exposed to a variety of radioactive particles.

Cocoa consumption might improve Memory Function in Elderly

Credit: National Cancer Institute Renee Comet (Photographer) - PD

(Best Syndication News) - A study found that eating cocoa flavanols on a daily basis might help to improve mild cognitive impairment such as memory loss. The study results were published in the American Heart Association's journal Hypertension.

Flavonols are compounds that naturally occur in apples, tea, grapes, red wine, and cocoa. Other research has suggested that consumption of flavonols might reduce the risk of developing dementia.

One theory as to why flavonols may benefit the brain is that they could help improve blood flow. Another idea is that flavonols might work within the brain structure and thereby preserving function and neurons. The idea is that the flavonols might improve metabolism and may help with the molecular structure that is involved with memory.

Tai Chi Exercise increased Brain Size in Elderly

credit: National Cancer Institute Bill Branson (Photographer) - PD

(Best Syndication News) - A study found that Chinese elderly people were able to increase brain volume and improve their memory and thinking skills when they did Tai Chi three times per week over an eight month period. Researchers from the University of South Florida and Fudan University in Shanghai, China reported their findings in the Journal of Alzheimer ’s disease.

The study was inspired from previous research that showed increased brain volume after people participated in aerobic exercise programs. These researchers conducted an 8-month randomized controlled trial that assigned one group to practice Tai Chi and the other had no change. During the same trial, the researchers found that the group that was part of lively discussions three times per week, also showed increased brain volume and mild cognitive improvements.

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