Alzheimer’s Disease successfully reversed in mice!

alzheimer's freeThe incidence of Alzheimer’s Disease is increasing, and it’s projected that by the year 2050, the number of people with Alzheimer’s could triple. But new research could change that: researchers have discovered a drug compound that has successfully reversed the effects of Alzheimer’s disease in mice! After just one dose of this compound, called TC-2153, mice with Alzheimer’s were able to learn just as well as healthy mice!

Here’s how they figured it out: the protein STEP (STriatal-Enriched tyrosine Phosphatase) attacks neurotransmitters in the brain and prevents patients with Alzheimer’s from learning and retaining new information. STEP levels are often elevated in patients with Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s Disease. Knowing this, researchers turned to mice for help. They previously found that when Alzheimer’s mouse models (mice that are genetically engineered to develop the disease) had lowered levels of STEP, their cognitive abilities were similar to those of unaffected mice. The problem is that researchers could genetically lower STEP levels in mice- but you can’t do that in humans.

The understanding of STEP’s role in the disease led researchers to search for different compounds that could block it. And it appears that they’ve succeeded! More research is certainly needed to determine whether or not TC-2153 will work in other animals, and possibly humans, but the identification of this STEP-inhibiting compound is certainly good news! Read more about it here:¬†

3 thoughts on “Alzheimer’s Disease successfully reversed in mice!

  1. scott

    The headline is completely misleading. It is a gross exaggeration.
    Indeed, the behavioral assay, while useful, is not an adequate test- it is, merely a good starting point. There are ‘mountains’ of data that have demonstrated improvement of learning/memory in similar assays that do not translate to humans.
    The study reported is an important step, but it is NOT reversal of Alzheimer’s Disease. Additionally, the mouse model is only that, a model.
    Please be more circumspect in your reviews. It is titles like this that mislead the public.
    Thank you very much
    Scott P Baron, PhD.

    1. Science Kicks Ass Post author

      Yes, there is certainly much more work that needs to be done in regards to Alzheimer’s research, but the reversal of effects of the disease in mice is very encouraging. The fact that these mice were able to learn new information after administration of this drug is amazing. Regardless of whether this drug works in exactly the same way in humans, researchers have shown that targeting STEP levels has been a successful approach in animal research. This gives them somewhere to start. Alzheimer’s can be devastating, and the more information available to researchers, the better. Hopefully this type of treatment will soon make its way into human trials and prove to be successful. Until then, basic research such as this should definitely make us more optimistic about possible treatments and cures for the disease.

  2. Shirl

    Why wait to try on people???? Doesn’t make since when there isn’t anything in TC-2153 that is death threathing.. So many are hurting right now why not go for the gold … gezzz!

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