Antibodies Clarify The Role Of Diabetes In The Pathogenesis Of Alzheimer's Disease

Fri, 01/08/2010 - 10:00

Anti-AGE antibodies are not the elixir of youth as their name might imply! They have nevertheless provided new information about Alzheimer’s disease, the major cause of dementia in old age.

Advanced glycation end products (AGE) are produced by glycation and oxidation reactions between sugars and free amino groups on proteins and amino acids. They are implicated in a wide range of pathologies. AGE can form in cooked foods. In addition, glycation reactions within the blood form endogenous AGE. High blood sugar levels favour endogenous AGE production.

Diabetes is a risk factor for Alzheimer’s. This motivated a study by Burdo et al (Neurobiol. Aging 2009, 30(12), pp. 1910-1917). The authors used anti-AGE antibodies from Novus Biologicals to detect AGE.

Firstly, they demonstrated synergistic interactions between glucose and beta amyloid peptide leading to increased AGE accumulation in cultured brain microvascular endothelial cells.

They then investigated the relationship between AGE accumulation and elevated blood glucose in transgenic mice expressing mutant human amyloid precursor protein and presenilin. These mice are a model for presymptomatic Alzheimer’s disease.

Mice that were made diabetic showed decreased cognitive functions compared to controls. This was associated with increased levels of AGE in cerebral microvessels. On the other hand, no amyloid plaques or tangles were apparent in the brains of these mice.

The role of diabetes in presymptomatic Alzheimer’s and early loss of cognitive function has thus been further elucidated with the aid of anti-AGE antibodies from Novus Biologicals. This has to be recognised as a meaningful advance in attempts to understand the connections between two conditions that have considerable impact on well being in contemporary society.

Novus Biologicals offers many AGE reagents for your research needs including:


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