Common Diabetes Drug May Help Those with Alzheimer’s

Alzheimer’s research has recently included stem cell studies, however new findings may expand options to include a commonly used drug to treat diabetes. It has been found that metformin stimulates brain cells to grow.

Animal studies of stem cell transplantation have shown dramatic results, including studies done by the Burnett College of Biomedical Sciences at the University of Central Florida. Current research introduces new stem cells into aging animals, which have been shown to regenerate brain tissue, “However, ethical and practical issues associated with (Human Stem Cells) compel us to explore alternative strategies,” says the report by UK PubMed Central.

Paving New Pathways

According to Freda Miller, the lead author of the metformin study conducted by the University of Toronto, the drug works by spurring existing stem cells into action instead of creating or transplanting new ones. The report in Medical News Today says:

"Earlier work by Miller's team highlighted a pathway known as aPKC-CBP for its essential role in telling neural stem cells where and when to differentiate into mature neurons. As it happened, others had found before them that the same pathway is important for the metabolic effects of the drug metformin, but in liver cells."

In animal studies, metformin improved neurological response as well as showed a growth in the number of neurons. Research with human brain cells showed similar findings with brain cell repair.

Mistaken Identity

A possible link to improved cognitive function had previously been found in Alzheimer’s patients who were taking metformin. It was thought that this improvement was due to better blood sugar control. These new findings suggest that it may be due to the drug helping the brain repair itself.

Future studies will look at other areas. These include those that have suffered brain injury from radiation treatment for cancer or as a result of brain trauma.

Sources:


http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/releases/247517.php
http://allsideeffects.net/metformin-side-effects/
http://www.sciencemag.org/content/215/4537/1237.short
http://ukpmc.ac.uk/abstract/MED/16953146/reload=0;jsessionid=Hbs9JdwXPxk...

More Articles

Diabetic shoes are important as a common side effect of diabetes is "peripheral neuropathy," which causes loss of sensation in the extremities....

There’s something inherently playful about bouncing, which is why so many people enjoy rebounding. Rebounding, or exercising on a mini-trampoline...

Do not let pictures of yoga experts with their bodies twisted into bizarre, compact shapes fool you. Even people with stiff muscles, creaky joints...

One of the hardest parts about adopting a low-carb diet is giving up traditional baked goods and sweets. The good news, however, is that low-carb...

Insulin injections are a way of life for many people with type 1 or type 2 diabetes, but for some people, they can be a little intimidating at...

More Articles

Insulin injections are a way of life for many people with type 1 or type 2 diabetes, but for some people, they can be a little intimidating at...

With diabetes, it all used to be really simple: Type 1 diabetes was known as “childhood-onset,” and type 2 was “adult-onset” diabetes. The cause...

There’s something inherently playful about bouncing, which is why so many people enjoy rebounding. Rebounding, or exercising on a mini-trampoline...

Everyone from grandmothers to physicians tout oatmeal's wholesome goodness and health benefits. But, is oatmeal good for diabetics? Limited...

A common complication associated with diabetes is swollen feet. The swelling can...

Stomach aches and other gastrointestinal pains can be signs of a bigger problem. One such problem for diabetics is gastroparesis, or delayed...

Improving your A1C reading requires you to maintain consistently healthy blood...

Diabetic shoes are important as a common side effect of diabetes is "peripheral neuropathy," which causes loss of sensation in the extremities....

You may think beer, wine, and liquor would be categorized as food, but in reality, alcohol is a drug. Just like medications, alcohol has powerful...

While most physicians will tell you that your blood glucose will not be impacted by a flu shot, anecdotally there are reports of increased...

With such a marked increase in the number of new diabetes cases, more people are wondering if type 1 diabetes...

Experts estimate that somewhere in the world a person with diabetes will lose a lower extremity every half minute due to a wound. One of the...

One of the hardest parts about adopting a low-carb diet is giving up traditional baked goods and sweets. The good news, however, is that low-carb...

The medical community relies heavily on the goodwill of its citizens, as giving blood and organ donations help save thousands of lives every year...

There are several misconceptions about Diabetes. Learn more about the top misconceptions vs. facts surrounding Type 2 Diabetes below.

86...