Study IDs Plaque Linked to Alzheimer's

Scientist uncover key clue to cause of illness
By Peter Fearon,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 23, 2008 9:07 AM CDT
Elaine Bloomquist points to a motion sensor in the bathroom of her home in Milwaukie, Ore. Tracking of elderly people's movements can provide early clues of impending Alzheimer's disease.    (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer)
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(Newser) – Researchers have triggered Alzheimer's disease in rats by injecting them with a particular type of sticky plaque found in the brains of human dementia patients, AP reports. Only one of three different types of plaques found in elderly brains sparked the disease—compelling evidence that scientists may have narrowed down the cause of the devastating illness. Once the cause is known, researchers can seek a cure or preventative measures.

"While more research is needed to replicate and extend these findings, this study has put yet one more piece into place in the puzzle that is Alzheimer's," said an expert.