Tau Gene Linked To Family Of Neurodegenerative Disorders; Finding May Yield Insight Into Onset Of Alzheimer's Disease

Researchers led by a UC San Francisco neurologist are reporting findings that they say may put them an important step closer to understanding the way in which Alzheimer's disease ravages the brain cells of patients.

In a paper published in the October 27 issue of Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, the researchers announce that they have identified three mutations in a gene that produces the tau protein, and have determined that these mutations cause several related hereditary neurodegenerative diseases, the most prevalent known as frontotemporal lobe dementia.

While the finding does not directly implicate the tau gene in Alzheimer's disease, it does so strongly by association, said the senior author of the study, Kirk Wilhelmsen, MD, an assistant professor neurology at UCSF. The tau protein has long been a suspected factor in Alzheimer's disease because abnormal, insoluble, tangled filaments of the protein-are always found in the autopsied brains of people who have the disease. But because researchers have never found a mutation in the tau gene of Alzheimer's patients, they had come to think that the neurofibrillary tangles, composed primarily of tau protein, were but an inconsequential by-product of some other factor that actually caused nerve cell degeneration.

Now that there is hard evidence that tau, itself, is capable of killing brain cells, the picture changes, said Wilhelmsen. "Finding a direct link between mutations in the tau gene and these hereditary neurodegenerative diseases strongly indicates that tau is an important player in neurons dying in Alzheimer's disease and many other diseases, as well," he said.

The goal now, he said, is to figure out what causes tau protein to accumulate in insoluble filaments in the brain cells of Alzheimer's patients. While mutations in tau gene appear to lead directly to cell death in the hereditary diseases studied, Wilhelmsen said he and colleagues don't believe that a tau mutation oc

Contact: Jennifer O'Brien
University of California - San Francisco

Page: 1 2 3 4

Related biology news :

1. Alzheimers Disease And Developmental Biology Linked Through Single Molecule
2. Role Of Protein Linked To Colon Cancer Identified, Offering Potential Target For Therapy
3. Seattle Researchers Zero In On Location Of Gene For Inherited Prostate Cancer; Gene Also Linked To Brain Cancer
4. Genetic Mutations Linked To Rare Metabolic Disease
5. In The Genes: Extra Belly Fat, Insulin Resistance Linked
6. Familial Cancer Syndrome Linked to Colorectal Cancer in Younger People
7. Genes Linked To Early Onset, Location Of Hereditary Colon Cancer
8. Elevated Blood Levels Of Inactive TPA Linked To Increased Stroke Risk In Young Women
9. Clues To Transplant Tolerance Linked To Infectious Disease Immunity Cell Traffic Key, Say Authors In New England Journal of Medicine
10. Memory Loss In Old Age No Longer Linked To Dying Brain Cells
11. Inherited Depression Linked To Shortage Of Cells In Brain Region

Post Your Comments:

(Date:1/20/2019)... ... January 17, 2019 , ... The possibility that ethnic differences ... documented for many years. These observed differences may be manifest in alterations in ... patients residing in different geographic regions. This created the perceived necessity to fully ...
(Date:1/14/2019)... ... January 14, 2019 , ... ... detect precancer and cancer cells in blood, will present new findings at the ... the fight against colorectal cancer. The results from this study show CellMax Life’s ...
(Date:1/10/2019)... ... ... Dr. Beanlands is the Vered Chair and Division Head of Cardiology at the ... of its National Cardiac PET Centre, and Professor in the University's Division of Cardiology ... of Cellular and Molecular medicine. , He is a founding member of ASNC, member ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:1/20/2019)... YORK (PRWEB) , ... January 17, 2019 , ... ... clinical testing was, until recently, the exclusive purview of physicians. That's changing as ... The global direct to consumer (DTC) laboratory testing market totaled $208 million in ...
(Date:1/20/2019)... ... January 17, 2019 , ... ... Partner announces the launch of a specialized automation technology, titled Automate 3D. Automate ... automatic generation of models and drawings to deliver to end-users, customers, and ERP ...
(Date:1/15/2019)... Ill. (PRWEB) , ... January 15, 2019 , ... Personalized ... factors for worsening kidney disease, according to a new study published in the journal ... and are frequently treated with partial nephrectomy, a surgical procedure in which the tumor ...
(Date:1/11/2019)... ... January 11, 2019 , ... Boekel Scientific launches its ... donor blood. This advanced and intuitive medical device was designed in conjunction ... needed for the busiest donor stations with new-to-the industry features to improve efficiency ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: