A vaccine created by University of Rochester Medical Center scientists prevents the development of Alzheimer’s disease-like pathology in mice without causing inflammation or significant side effects. Vaccinated mice generated an immune response to the protein known as amyloid-beta peptide, which accumulates in what are called “amyloid plaques” in brains of people with Alzheimer’s. The vaccinated mice demonstrated normal learning skills and functioning memory in spite of being genetically designed to develop an aggressive form of the disease.
The Rochester scientists reported the findings in an article in the May issue of Molecular Therapy, the journal of The American Society of Gene Therapy. “Our study demonstrates that we can create a potent but safe version of a vaccine that utilizes the strategy of immune response shaping to prevent Alzheimer’s-related pathologies and memory deficits,” said William Bowers, associate professor of neurology and of microbiology and immunology at the Medical Center and lead author of the article. “The vaccinated mice not only performed better, we found no evidence of signature amyloid plaque in their brains.”
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