September 4, 2009

New class of Alzheimer’s drugs possible

U.S., South Korean and French researchers report their discovery of a protein fragment that may result in new Alzheimer's drugs.

The research, published by Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology Journal, found the N60 section of a protein called RanBP9 may be key to creating a drug that could help reduce production of the excessive amounts amyloid beta proteins associated with Alzheimer's.

Our study suggests that targeting RanBP9 expression and/or N60 fragment generation may lead to novel strategies to combat this devastating disease, David Kang of the University of California, San Diego, said in a statement.

The researchers found the N60 section link after examining extracts from brains from those with the disease and age-matched healthy controls.

Most experts believe if the creation of amyloid beta protein can be halted or slowed, the devastating effects of Alzheimer's may also be stopped or slowed, Kang said.