The Scripps Research Institute - At The Forefront
March 2015 Connect with us:
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A Possible Key to Treating Alzheimer's

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that 5.3 million Americans currently have Alzheimer's disease, and that number is expected to double by 2050 as the population ages. However, no effective treatments for Alzheimer's currently exist.

Now, a team of scientists at The Scripps Research Institute (TSRI) has found that Alzheimer's patients have brains with significantly more genetic variation than normal brains, including extra copies of a gene linked to the disease. The finding may help scientists pinpoint the mechanism that causes Alzheimer's and develop new treatments.

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The laboratory of Professor Jerold Chun (center) includes (left to right) Yun Yung, Richard Rivera, Benjamin Siddoway and Gwendolyn Kaeser.
TSRI's groundbreaking research is finding new approaches to treating and curing devastating diseases like Alzheimer's and Parkinson's that affect millions each day. Help us continue our life-saving work. donate now
 
Phil LoGrasso is a professor at The Scripps Research Institute's Florida campus.
milestones in medical science:
Preventing Brain Cell Death Associated with Parkinson's

In a pair of related studies, Scripps Florida scientists led by TSRI Professor Philip LoGrasso have shown that their drug candidates can target biological pathways involved in the destruction of brain cells in Parkinson's disease.

The studies suggest that it is possible to design highly effective and highly selective drug candidates that can protect the function of mitochondria, which provide the cell with energy, ultimately preventing brain cell death. The discoveries could also lead to new treatment approaches for Alzheimer's disease and ALS (Lou Gehrig's disease).

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“This finding is a good example of what can be gained from studying enzymes linked to rare human genetic disorders,” says Benjamin Cravatt, chair of TSRI’s Department of Chemical Physiology.
Other News:
Possible New Target for Treating Brain Inflammation

A team of TSRI scientists led by Benjamin F. Cravatt, chair of TSRI's Department of Chemical Physiology and member of TSRI's Skaggs Institute for Chemical Biology, set out to investigate PHARC, a rare and mysterious inherited disorder that was first described by Norwegian researchers in 2009.

Their investigation led to the identification of an enzyme that produces a class of inflammatory lipid molecules in the brain that may cause PHARC and prove useful in treating PHARC and more common conditions that involve brain inflammation – including multiple sclerosis, Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, ALS, and secondary damage after stroke and head injuries.

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CELLebrate Science Festival Presents Wonders of Scripps Florida Research

This January, TSRI's sixth annual CELLebrate Science Day at the Gardens Mall in Palm Beach Gardens introduced thousands of Palm Beach County children and adults to Scripps Florida's biomedical research through hands-on displays and presentations that featured glowing fish, 3D robots, exploding hydrogen bubbles, and much more. This year, for the first time, 3D printers were on hand to demonstrate this new technology's abilities by producing more than 400 mini-robots as visitor giveaways.
facts & figures

In the U.S., someone is diagnosed with Alzheimer's or another form of dementia every 67 seconds.
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