Alzheimer’s research studies are widespread, but very few have led to any major breakthroughs in recent years.
Cambridge Study Identifies Catalyst
Researchers at Cambridge University published a study on Monday that was able to identify the process that turns healthy cells into abnormal cells, the catalyst that causes the onset of Alzheimer’s. These findings bring scientists a step closer to finding prevention or treatment solutions for the disease.
Alzheimer’s is the 6th leading cause of death in the United States and has recently passed cancer and heart disease as the most expensive illness. Cases of Alzheimer’s are expected to triple by 2050, bringing the total number of people afflicted to over 15 million in the US alone. No cure or treatment is currently available for Alzheimer’s, though a number of studies are being conducted around the nation to test potential solutions to the onset or reversal of Alzheimer’s.
Focus of Alzheimer’s Research
Professor Christopher Dobson, who collaborated with others on this study, discovered the connection between protein “misfolding” and disease more than 15 years ago, and is well known for his contribution. The Alzheimer’s research is a continuance of his previous research of diseases.
The lead author of the study, Dr. Tuomas Knowles, described how they “established the pathway that shows how the toxic species that cause cell death, the oligomers, are formed. This is the key pathway to detect, target and intervene – the molecular catalyst that underlies the pathology.”
Because the research focused on the earliest stage of Alzheimer’s, the onset itself, the findings could prove useful to drug development for dementia all over the world.
“We are essentially using a physical and chemical methods to address a biomolecular problem, mapping out the networks of processes and dominant mechanisms to ‘recreate the crime scene’ at the molecular root of Alzheimer’s disease,” explained Knowles.
Alzheimer’s and Long Term Care
Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia are the leading cause for needing long term care services in the United States. Researchers are fervently trying to understand the disease before the number of patients skyrockets even more.
Long Term Care includes a number of services like in-home health aides, assisted living facilities, nursing homes, and senior living communities. These costs can be extremely high, with nursing home stays averaging over $80,000 a year. Without a plan to cover these costs, paying out of pocket can be extremely stressful. For a lot of people, it isn’t even an option. If you can’t afford the costs out of pocket, you will be forced to turn to Medicaid, which severely limits where you can receive care and what kind you can receive.
Investing in Long Term Care Insurance allows you to forgo that financial fiasco and rest assured that your health and your assets are protected. LTC Tree can help you shop the LTCI market, compare providers and policies, and offer unbiased information about various benefits and plans.
Read more about Long Term Care Insurance.
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