A new research study has found that it takes longer for amyloid beta 42, a protein that has been linked to Alzheimer’s. Takes longer to clear as you get older. This discovery could help with more effective treatments for this condition by coming up with methods that can help clear this protein faster as you get older. Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis neurology professor and the senior author of the study Randall J. Bateman, M.D. explained that “We found that people in their 30s typically take about four hours to clear half the amyloid beta 42 from the brain. In this new study, we show that at over 80 years old, it takes more than 10 hours.” This allows the protein to accumulate in the brain and clump together so that the typical Alzheimer’s plaques are formed.
The study on Alzheimer’s and amyloid beta 42 involved 100 participants, all of them between 60 and 87 years old. Half of the study participants had shown clinical signs associated with Alzheimer’s, and these symptoms included memory loss and memory problems. In 62 of the 100 participants the plaques had already started to form in the brain according to the researchers. All of the participants went through physical and mental evaluations that were very detailed, and they had brain scans to determine whether any plaques had already started to form in their brain. Dr. Bateman stated that “Through additional studies like this, we’re hoping to identify which of the first three channels for amyloid beta disposal are slowing down as the brain ages. That may help us in our efforts to develop new treatments.”