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Researchers Discover What May Be Earliest Stage of Alzheimer’s

Image result for alzheimer'sOlder adults with elevated levels of brain-clogging plaques — but otherwise normal cognition — experience faster mental decline suggestive of Alzheimer’s disease, according to a new study led by the Keck School of Medicine of USC that looked at 10 years of data. Just about all researchers see amyloid plaques as a risk factor for Alzheimer’s. However, this study presents the toxic, sticky protein as part of the disease — the earliest precursor before symptoms arise. “To have the greatest impact on the disease, we need to intervene against amyloid, the basic molecular cause, as early as possible,” said Paul Aisen, senior author of the study and director of the USC Alzheimer’s Therapeutic Research Institute (ATRI) at the Keck School of Medicine. “This study is a significant step toward the idea that elevated amyloid levels are an early stage of Alzheimer’s, an appropriate stage for anti-amyloid therapy.”

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