• Russian scientists say they’ve developed a chemical compound that can stop the degeneration of neurons in Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease.
• The treatment has been deemed safe due to its low toxicity.
• More than 115 million people worldwide could develop dementia by 2050.
Scientists in Russia claim they have developed a chemical compound that can stop the degeneration of neurons in severe brain pathologies. The study, which appears in the European Journal of Medicinal Chemistry, says that new molecules developed could activate the body’s ability to fight amyloid plaque buildups in the brain.
And these are one of the leading causes of brain diseases in Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease.
“Our compounds activate the synthesis of specific heat shock proteins and cause their accumulation in the cell,” said Irina Utepova, professor of the Department of Organic and Biomolecular Chemistry at Ural Federal University.
“Proteins of this type make it possible to protect neuronal tissue from an excess of toxic amyloids and to protect cells from various types of stress, including proteotoxic stress characteristic of neurodegenerative diseases.”
Is this safe?
The new molecules — pryrrolflazine and indolylazines — are deemed safe to use with patients because they have low toxicity. Researchers said the most effective treatment — pryrrolflazine — was tested on living tissues of rats dealing with brain injuries.
In the animal testing, results showed how the pryrrolflazine treatment worked; it allowed the rats to “avoid the appearance of movement disorders,” and degeneration of neurons in the hippocampus, the area of the brain where learning and memory happens.
In both brain diseases — Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s — neurons are the casualty and eventually die off, which results in cognitive malfunctions like memory loss, ability to think, and ability to speak.
Experts say that more than 115 million people worldwide could develop dementia by 2050.
Other Alzheimer’s news
Recently, an Alzheimer’s disease drug mired in controversy was approved by the FDA. The drug, Aduhelm, is the first drug approved to fight Alzheimer’s disease in nearly two decades.
However, the side effects of the drug and its priciness — it will cost $56,000 a year, according to its maker, Biogen — has been the subject of discussion, with several medical experts questioning if the drug, which was once rejected by a panel, even works.