Heart Meds May Work Against Alzheimer's

Anti-cholesterol drugs appear to combat brain disease
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 28, 2007 7:48 AM CDT
Alzheimer's patient Dorothy Eckert and her husband John Eckert's hold hands at their home in Norristown Pa., Thursday, April 19, 2007. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – The best medicine for Alzheimer's disease may be a heart drug, researchers say, and the discovery may shed light on the way the devastating disorder acts on the brain. Subjects taking popular statin-based cholesterol meds developed fewer protein deposits in their brains, reports Time, possibly confirming suspicions that Alzheimer’s is more of a blood vessel problem than a brain disease.

Previous research on statins yielded mixed results, but this is the first study to include brain autopsies, which are the only way to definitively diagnose Alzheimer’s. All 110 participants in the study, reported in Neurology, were monitored for several years before their deaths and donated their brains for the research.