Could one woman help researchers find a cure for Alzheimer’s?

Alzheimer’s ailment is the most prevalent cause of dementia, which contributes to a decline in memory, considering, and social skills. Much more than 5 million people today in the U.S. reside with Alzheimer’s, which currently has no get rid of. 

But results from a research funded by the Nationwide Institutes of Health give a new path for developing a cure.

Researchers looked at a massive, extended family members in Colombia, South The us. Quite a few associates of that family members have a gene distinction that will cause Alzheimer’s signs early, commonly in their 40s, instead than right after age 65.

Of the far more than 6,000 people today in the family members, about 20% experienced this gene distinction. Absolutely everyone who experienced it formulated issues with considering early—except 1 lady.

Unlike her family members associates, this lady did not have signs until eventually she was in her 70s. This fascinated the researchers, and she volunteered for brain imaging and genetic testing to assistance them recognize why her Alzheimer’s formulated afterwards.

Illustrations or photos of her brain confirmed much less damage than is commonly found in people today with the ailment. The results of the genetic testing were being also intriguing. It turned out that the lady experienced two copies of a exceptional variation in the APOE gene, named APOE3ch.

This discovery could go a long way in aiding to advance Alzheimer’s study, for illustration, by mimicking how this gene variation impacts the brain.

“In some cases near assessment of a solitary situation can guide to discovery that could have wide implications for the field,” claims Nationwide Institute on Getting old Director Richard J. Hodes, M.D.