Results about: Alzheimer’s Disease
The project, led by Natàlia Carulla, has been awarded funds from “La Marató de TV3” initiative held in 2013.
The project, which will be undertaken over three years, aims to verify a new therapeutic target to fight Alzheimer’s.
Scientists at IRB Barcelona in collaboration with researchers at the University of Barcelona observe that aggregates of 20 to 100 units of beta-amyloid have a structure that is the most harmful to neurons.
This is the first time that a method allows scientists to monitor aggregation while simultaneously detect a structural pattern responsible for the toxicity of beta-amyloid aggregation.
The researchers state that these studies are a step towards finding a therapeutic target for a disease which, to date, has no treatment.
Alzheimer’s disease has no cure and virtually no palliative treatments are available. Even today its origin is still unknown. All this has driven the international scientific community to back new approaches that allow early diagnosis of the disease and the discovery of a treatment to stop its progression. IRB Barcelona is not oblivious to this tendency. The researchers Patrick Aloy and Natàlia Carulla head projects addressing an alternative slant on the control and progression of the disease and the discovery of new therapeutic agents.
Around 160 scientists, brought together by IRB Barcelona and the BBVA Foundation in a Barcelona Biomed Conference, are discussing the latest research into one of the hallmarks of Alzheimer’s disease, the amyloid-beta protein that is the major component of the plaques that are characteristic of this debilitating disorder.
According to data from Alzheimer's Disease International in 2013, an estimated 135 million people worldwide will be suffering from dementia in 2050, Alzheimer’s disease being the most prevalent. This condition currently affects over 40 million people but is very strongly age-related, giving rise to the prospect of a ‘21st century plague’ affecting the aging populations across the globe.
A recent report from the Cleveland Clinic published in July 3, indicates that 99.6% of the clinical trials for Alzheimer´s disease have failed, with the result that much of the pharmaceutical industry is discouraged and uncertain as to how to proceed. The scientific community, however, is making substantial progress in understand the underlying causes of the disease, an essential factor in the rational design of innovative therapeutic strategies.
The study describes the neuroprotective effect of reelin in neurodegenerative diseases.
Co-directed by Eduardo Soriano and Lluís Pujadas, from the University of Barcelona, and the CIBERNED network, the study has involved Bernat Serra-Vidal, Ernest Giralt and Natàlia Carulla, all three scientists at IRB.