Potential Alzheimer's Drug Spurs Protein Recycling

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Science  25 Apr 2014:
Vol. 344, Issue 6182, pp. 351
DOI: 10.1126/science.344.6182.351

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By stabilizing the components of retromers, molecular complexes that act like recycling bins in cells, a recently identified compound could slow or stop the implacable spread of a protein fragment called β amyloid, a likely culprit in neuron death in Alzheimer's disease. The work builds on growing evidence that retromer dysfunction plays a role in the neurodegenerative disorder. Although the research on the possible small molecule drug is preliminary—so far the published work has only been done in cells—the new results have nonetheless impressed some veterans of the Alzheimer's field.

  • * Ken Garber is a writer based in Ann Arbor, Michigan.

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