20 years later, new medications have now emerged to treat Alzheimer’s dementia. Phase 2 data from a new immunotherapy shows promising results.
At 60-80%, Alzheimer’s disease is the predominant form of dementia. Beta-amyloid, which is found outside cells, and tau, which accumulates inside the cell, play a key role in its development. These proteins lead to the formation of disease-causing deposits and clumps in the brain. Diabetes and vascular disease, as well as alcohol and nicotine abuse, increase the risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease.
A link between herpes viruses and the development of Alzheimer’s disease was also demonstrated last year in a study conducted by the Oxford Institute on Population Aging, the University of Manchester and Tufts University in Massachusetts.1 If herpes simplex virus type 1 is reactivated by varicella zoster virus, the processes that lead to Alzheimer’s disease can begin. Damage directly caused by VZV is also discussed in the work. “The results of this pilot study expand our view of the development of Alzheimer’s disease to include a new, previously neglected but quite possible cause – chronic viral diseases,” emphasized the Board of Directors of the German Society of Pain Medicine, Dr. Michael A. Operal in a press release on the occasion of World Alzheimer’s Day on September 21. “If the association is also confirmed in clinical studies, VZV may provide an opportunity to preventively influence the course of Alzheimer’s disease development or perhaps even largely prevent it, i.e. by vaccinating with the live vaccine in children to avoid primary infection with VZV and by vaccinating adults with the inactivated vaccine.” To strengthen the immune system and prevent reactivation of the VZV virus already in the body.
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