Alzheimer’s and Other Neurodegenerative Disorders Need Awareness and Complete Cure

Alzheimer’s disease continues to trouble the world and there is no cure for it. It is estimated that over 5. 4 million people in the United States alone suffer from Alzheimer’s disorder. Researchers estimate that by 2050, this number will have tripled. June is observed as the Brain and Alzheimer’s awareness month by the Alzheimer’s association. By June 2016, very little progress had been made in creating awareness and getting solutions for degenerative disorders. The awareness programs mainly focus on eliminating the stigma and breaking the myths that are linked with Alzheimer’s disease.

Since it is important to create awareness on degenerative diseases, the residents of New Canaan town in Connecticut began spreading Alzheimer’s awareness in April 2016 through a program known as Paint the town Purple Campaign. This campaign was intended to honor the 73000 people who are living with this disease in Connecticut. Small businesses in the area also show their support by painting their storefronts purple.

The initial symptoms associated with Alzheimer’s diseases are:

• Depression,
• Apathy and
• Challenges remembering conversations

Symptoms of the late stage of this disease are
• Disorientation,
• Poor communication,
Behavioral changes and
• Challenges in accomplishing activities like walking, swallowing and speaking

With time, the condition of the patients and the symptoms tend to worsen even if a patient is given appropriate care. The only treatment available today is for managing the ensuing symptoms and pain reduction. Several scientific researches have been ongoing to find treatment though very little success has been achieved. However, considerable progress has been achieved in a diagnosis of this disease.

A paper that was published in Journal Science Translational Medicine, which is a non-profit financed research that was carried out by a team of Harvard neurologists, has shown that the Beta-amyloid protein, which accrues in the brain, is an antimicrobial peptide and the production of peptides in abnormal amounts eventually results in this disorder.

The scientific team confirmed that secretion of these protein peptides can also be triggered when one is exposed to small amounts of microbes. The scientists suggested that a possible cure could be through vaccination against the microns in the brain. This theory limits the production of peptides and the ultimate accumulation of it in the brain region.

A study that was carried out by RIKEN-MIT Center for Neural Circuit Genetics (CNCG) discovered that new memories in mice are continuously made even when one suffers from Alzheimer’s. However, the problem lies in the ability of the brains cells to retrieve this stored memory. However, these results from mice cannot be a direct comparison to humans. This is because the transmission of plaque cells in clinical mice is very different from that in humans.

Five drugs have been approved for management of Alzheimer’s by The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). These drugs are memantine, galantamine, rivastigmine, donepezil and a combination of memantine and donepezil. These medications only treat the symptoms associated with this neurodegenerative disease. They also delay or stop the degeneration process.

Dr. Alois Alzheimer discovered this disease from an autopsy done on the brain of a patient one hundred years ago. Today, over 40 million people all over the world suffer from this neurodegenerative disease. This is the right time for pharmaceutical companies, regulators, scientists, and governments to join hands and find a cure for Alzheimer’s disease and other neurodegenerative disorders instead of just treating the symptoms.

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