The UK has seen a 20% fall in the incidence of dementia over the past two decades, according to new research from England, led by the University of Cambridge, leading to an estimated 40,000 fewer cases of dementia than previously predicted. However, the study, published today in Nature Communications, suggests that the dramatic change has been observed mainly in men.
An approved anti-cancer drug successfully targets the first step in the toxic chain reaction that leads to Alzheimer’s disease, suggesting that treatments may be found to lower the risk of developing the neurodegenerative condition.
The number of people with dementia – both new cases and total numbers with the disease – appears to be stabilising in some Western European countries despite populations ageing, in direct contrast to the ‘dementia epidemic’ reported in some recent studies. Professor Carol Brayne and Yu-tzu Wu from the Cambridge Institute of Public Health explore what this means.
Researchers have identified how proteins that play a key role in Alzheimer’s disease are linked in a pathway that controls its progression, and that drugs targeting this pathway may be a potential new way of treating the disease.
New funding will support fundamental research into the molecular processes underlying human disorders such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases, and enable new ways to combat them.
A molecular chaperone has been found to inhibit a key stage in the development of Alzheimer’s disease and break the toxic chain reaction that leads to the death of brain cells, a new study shows. The research provides an effective basis for searching for candidate molecules that could be used to treat the condition.
Alzheimer’s Research UK, the world’s largest dedicated dementia research charity, has announced a £30 million Drug Discovery Alliance, launching three flagship Drug Discovery Institutes at the Universities of Cambridge, Oxford and UCL (University College London). The Drug Discovery Institutes will see 90 new research scientists employed in state-of-the-art facilities to fast-track the development of new treatments for Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias.
A third of Alzheimer’s disease cases worldwide can be attributed to risk factors that can be potentially modified, such as lack of education and physical inactivity, according to NIHR-funded research published in The Lancet Neurology today.