Saturday, November 8, 2008

B vitamin prevents memory loss in animal model of Alzheimer’s disease

An article in the November 5, 2008 issue of the Journal of Neuroscience revealed the discovery of researchers at the University of California, Irvine of a protective effect of nicotinamide, otherwise known as niacinamide (a form of vitamin B3), against memory loss in mice bred to develop a condition that mimics human Alzheimer's disease.

Nicotinamide is a member of a group of compounds known as histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitors, which have been shown to enhance memory. The compounds have been demonstrated to exert a protective effect on the central nervous system in rodent models of Parkinson’s disease, Huntington’s disease, and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). For the current research, Kim Green, Frank LaFerla and their associates used mice bred to develop brain deposits of amyloid beta as well as phosphorylated tau protein, which forms neurofibrillary tangles that occur in human Alzheimer’s disease patients.
The team added nicotinamide daily to the drinking water of four-month-old Alzheimer’s mice and normal mice, while other groups of mice received untreated water for four months. Cognition testing to evaluate short term and long term memory in areas of the brain affected by Alzheimer’s disease was conducted at the beginning and end of the study. Continue Reading

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