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Alzheimer's Disease Information

  • Alzheimer's disease (AD), a neurodegenerative disease, is the most common cause of dementia and characterized clinically by progressive cognitive deterioration together with declining activities of daily living and neuropsychiatric symptoms or behavioral changes. The most striking early symptom is memory loss (amnesia), usually manifests as minor forgetfulness that becomes steadily more pronounced with illness progression, with relative preservation of older memories...
  • As the disorder progresses, cognitive (intellectual) impairment extends to the domains of language (aphasia), skilled movements (apraxia), recognition (agnosia) and those functions (such as decision-making and planning) closely related to the frontal and temporal lobes of the brain as they become disconnected from the limbic system, reflecting extension of the underlying pathological process. This consists principally of neuronal (cell) loss (or atrophy), together with an inflammatory response to the deposition of amyloid plaques and neurofibrillary tangles. Genetic factors are known to be important, and autosomal dominant mutations (variations) in three different genes - Presenilin 1, Presenilin 2, and Amyloid Precursor Protein - have been identified that account for a small number of cases of familial, early-onset AD. For late onset AD (LOAD), only one susceptibility gene has so far been identified - the epsilon 4 allele of the Apolipoprotein E gene. Age of onset itself has a heritability of around 50%.

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Health Blogs

Despite the fact that millions of Americans suffer from Alzheimer’s disease, little is known about what causes affected individuals to descend into dementia. Two proteins called tau and beta amyloid were thought to be involved because they were found in widespread clumps and tangles in the brains of those with Alzheimer’s, but not in those ... Read More »
Whether it’s the answer to a trivia question or the punch line of a joke, we’ve all felt the anticipation of waiting for the unknown. In spite of the interest surrounding the origins of curiosity, what exactly is happening in the brain when a person feels curious has remained relatively mysterious. ... Read More »
Physical exercise is like a natural wonder drug for your brain and body. It gets your heart to pump life-giving blood into your brain, supplying more oxygen, glucose and nutrients that your brain needs to function at its best. The benefits of exercise are tremendous:
- it encourages the growth of new brain cells - it enhances ... Read More »

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Community Advisors
Michael T Murray, ND
Naturopathic Medicine

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