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View Diary: Good News from Alzheimer's Researchers they may have found the magic bullet (164 comments)

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  •  This is an obsolete belief about the brain (8+ / 0-)

    There was a study some sixty or so years ago that laid down the premise that all of the rest of the body, except for the brain, had regenerative capacities. Too bad about that brain, so sorry.

    Actually, some twenty years back they redid the earlier research and found it it was in error. There are limits to how much the brain can repair itself, and it happens better when one is younger, but there is regeneration and repair going on constantly. In the case of damage, the repair process is enhanced, but it has limits. Multiple Sclerosis causes damage that is greater than the brain's ability to repair itself.

    Alzheimer's does seem to be a disease of reduced repair capacities. Stem cell transplants appear able to regrow lost areas of the brain and lost or damaged connections. That helps. The particular compound involved in this recent study is a year away from becoming a generic, so work is being done to try to find an even more effective version, that can be patented and so on. The existing compound can have some unpleasant side effects, so the search for a stronger version is valid. Perhaps a lower dosage would produce the good effects, with fewer bad effects.

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