Or is it just a modern version of snake oil?
By Steve Moran
We know a ton of stuff about Alzheimer’s and yet . . . for all of that there is so much that we don’t know.
There is a hypothesis that the mental deterioration that is a part of Alzheimer’s disease is caused by amyloid beta, a sticky protein that congregates on the brain surfaces which impedes neural communication.
Hope From Energy Drinks
An organization in Korea has discovered a chemical that can break down these buildups in the brains of mice and improve the ability of these animals to learn and memorize things. The chemical they are using is called EPPS and “is similar to taurine, which is used in energy drinks like Red Bull.”
Here is what has happened so far:
They injected mice with amyloid plaques to, in effect, create symptoms that are like Alzheimer’s disease, meaning decreased capability.
They then added EPPS to the mice’s drinking water.
Then they ran behavioral tests that showed that the EPPS improved the mices’ ability to run mazes.
They then looked at the brains of these mice under the microscope and discovered that the compound actually reduced the levels of the amyloid beta plaques.
They found that, at high doses, the buildup was essentially eliminated.
There is still a lot of work to be done before this will become the treatment or a treatment for Alzheimer’s. The first question is whether or not it is safe for humans to take this drug and at what doses. The second related question is what the side effects might be.
It is also not a given that because this works in mice it will work in humans.
The scientists do believe they are on the right track to halt neurodegeneration. You can read the entire article HERE.
No Immediate Impact
So it seems like the idea of an energy drink ingredient holding the key to fixing the Alzheimer’s disease is crazy voodoo science and, yet, I find myself wondering if it is possible that someone could actually uncover the silver bullet that killed this horrible disease. It would be, unequivocally, a good thing, but one can’t help ponder what it would mean to all these memory care units and assisted living communities.
So sort of a crazy question, but if in the next 6 years your dementia units became obsolete, what would you do with them?