Scientists from the Federal University in Rio de Janeiro concentrated their energy on a protein called TGF beta 1, which the American Journal of Neuroscience claimed was a brain-produced compound.
Researchers discovered the protein production reduces with age, causing a series of inflammations which break up the neuron connection. The scientists recognized these systems in their animal subjects and were able to reduce some of the symptoms to recover their short term memory.
"What we did was just a step for mid- and long-term treatment. It's a long road and certainly our work can contribute to it," said researcher Flavia Gomes, who participated in the project.
The experiment is executed by placing a mouse affected with Alzheimer’s in front of two identical objects. Scientists will remove one of the objects, replacing it with a different item and typically the test subject fails to react.
However, researchers found that once the mouse is injected TGF beta 1, the mouse remembers the object and recognizes the item as foreign after the change occurs.
EFE reports Alsheimer’s affects more than one million Brazilians and is the main dementia factor in the elderly.
According to a report from Alzheimers Association, 47 million suffer from the disease worldwide. This number is expected to grow to 76 million by 2030.
The efforts of these scientists could turn the table, changing the lives of not only patients around the world, but their families and caregivers as well.