The possibility of a vaccine against dementia is getting closer and closer to reality thanks to a new study conducted by researchers from the Institute of Molecular Medicine and the University of California, Irvine (UCI), published in Alzheimer Research & Therapy. The treatment, which has already been successful in experiments on mice to which the vaccine was injected intramuscularly, could now proceed to clinical trials in humans.
It is a new vaccine that removes “brain plaque” and those protein aggregates called tau that are linked to Alzheimer’s disease itself. Neurodegeneration and cognitive decline of Alzheimer’s disease are in fact caused by the so-called accumulating beta-amyloid plaques (Aβ) and TAU proteins.
Anahit Ghochikyan, one of the main authors of the study together with Hvat Davtyan and Mathew Blurton-Jones of the UCI, explains the success obtained during the experiments with mice that, once treated with the vaccine, developed antibodies specific for Aβ and tau: “Our approach is trying to cover all the bases and overcome previous blockages in the search for a therapy to slow down the accumulation of Aβ/tau molecules and delay the progression of Alzheimer’s disease in an increasing number of people worldwide.
This new vaccine could help trigger the body’s immune responses against Alzheimer’s disease in a large population of subjects.