Research Gives Alzheimer's Patients Hope

New study suggests disease-related memory loss may be reversible
By J. Kelman,  Newser User
Posted Apr 30, 2007 9:33 AM CDT
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(Newser) – Alzheimer's patients may be able to recover some memory by using a combo of drugs and mental stimulation, a new study in the journal Nature concludes. Mice with an Alzheimer's-like condition were more likely to remember an electric shock if they had taken a drug stimulating brain-cell growth or lived in playground-like cages.

The MIT scientist who led the study calls it the first evidence that memory can be restored after severe loss. If even minimal memory can be recovered, she says, that suggests Alzheimer's does not actually erase memories from the brain but instead prevents the nervous system from retrieving them—opening the possibilities for memory recovery.