Targeting a new therapy for Alzheimer's





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Published on Dec 20, 2012

An international team of researchers from UMass Medical School, the University of Bonn and the Center for Advanced European Studies and Research in Germany have shown that an immune and inflammatory process already established as a clinical target for rheumatoid arthritis plays an important role in the pathology of Alzheimer's disease, meaning drugs now used to target that process may benefit patients with Alzheimer's.

This process results in the mature production of the pro-inflammatory cytokine called interleukin-1 beta (IL-1β) and is involved in the body's defense against infection. The finding, published in Nature, points to the possibility that drugs that disrupt the production of IL-1β, such as those for rheumatoid arthritis, may also prove beneficial for patients with Alzheimer's.

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