Epigenetics and Memory

Excitatory signals, are an essential part of working memory. Disrupt them and you affect memory.

In Alzheimer’s Disease a lot of glutamate receptors are down regulated or lost and that disrupts excitatory signals.

Why?

The villain of the piece is a process called repressive histone modification[1,2]. This is an Epigenetic process and it is found to be elevated in AD patients.

The histone modifiers affect the structure of Chromatin (you know, the double-helix and all those proteins around it – the epigenome)

You can read more about it in this article “It may be possible to restore memory function in Alzheimer’s, preclinical study finds” on ScienceDaily.com.

The title sounds great but they’ve only tested this in animal models and post-mortem tissue samples from AD patients so it won’t be helping your aunt Sally come back in the near future. But it’s another avenue of attack on this horrible disease – and – it’s more information about how our brains really work (or not).

Kinda makes me wonder how many people out there will be looking into ways to do their own testing on themselves or those they’ve lost but are still living with. Or how many quack schemes will pop-up promoting a false sense of hope.

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About xamble

Most things I do involve computers. Nowadays that sounds stupid to hear because everyone uses computers. Except I was saying that before the IBM PC came on the scene. (hint: my first programs were entered on punch cards in an IBM-29) Now I mostly use them. Mostly to provide a community service in my small town. Because I could when it was asked and still can. And I'm a wannabe writer. Various books in various states of incompleteness. A few short stories. Might do more of that.
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