A newly published study has described the successful results in mice of a novel vaccine designed to prevent neurodegeneration associated with Alzheimer’s disease. The researchers suggest this “dementia vaccine” is now ready for human trials, and if successful could become the “breakthrough of the next decade.”
Alzheimer’s is a disease with a number of potential causes and therefore a number of potential targets for prevention. One of those centers on a protein call tau, which can gather in long tangles that kill off neurons in the brain. Scientists have developed what they describe as a vaccine to keep the brain clear of these dangerous clumps, and found that treating mice in this way helped stave off the kind of memory decline associated with the disease.