Alzheimer's Disease

Essay by angels73083College, UndergraduateA-, November 2004

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Who would have ever thought that a simple over the counter drug such as Ibuprophen appears to protect against Alzheimer's disease? This is the latest research experiment on mice.

Since 1997, Scientist has discovered that some people who regularly take large amounts of Ibuprophen and other anti-inflammatory drugs, for ache and pains run a lower risk of developing Alzheimer's ( The reason for the protection was a mystery until now.

Researchers said the latest findings could one day lead to new treatment that reduce the formation of brain deposits, or plagues, without toxic side effects. "If the findings can be extended to people, these drugs could join the Ivy League of potential treatments for Alzheimer's", said molecular biologist Bart De Strooper of the Catholic University of Leuven, Belgium.

Alzheimer's Disease is a degenerative brain disease that usually begins gradually. It causes a person to forget recent events or familiar tasks.

The rapidness of this disease varies from person to person. It eventually leads to confusion, impaired judgment, and personality and behavior changes. Finishing thoughts and following directions becomes difficult because patients find themselves struggling to find words. And then eventually patients become unable to care for themselves.

Today four million Americans have been diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease. In the year 2050 the number could jump to fourteen million Americans unless prevention methods are developed. One in ten people over 65 suffer and one out of five people over 85 suffer from Alzheimer's. The precise mechanisms of Alzheimer's disease are still unknown.

In the largest study of its kind to date, researchers looked at 284 patients within the United States, Belgium and Germany. Each patient had mild memory lapses and behavior changes. They were each followed for two to nine years. One hundred and thirty-eight died during the study and then...