While Alzheimer’s disease has cut short too many lives and devastated more families than can be counted, its root causes and effective treatments have eluded researchers for decades.
But, says Stanford bioengineer Annelise Barron, new science indicates that many Alzheimer’s cases are coincident with viral or bacterial infections in the brain, pointing to possible new approaches to treatment or prevention.
Barron says that one human protein in particular, LL-37 — which she refers to as a “Ninja protein” that protects against infections — can bind with and detoxify A-beta, the protein that forms the harmful plaques in the brain that are the hallmark of Alzheimer’s. Inducing LL-37 could be a way to prevent Alzheimer's.
Join host Russ Altman and Alzheimer’s sleuth Annelise Barron for a hopeful look at the latest science of Alzheimer’s disease.