Connection between Alzheimer’s disease and gut microbiota confirmed
December 3, 2020
Researchers in Switzerland and Italy have proved a correlation between an imbalance in the gut microbiota (a wide variety of bacteria, viruses, and fungi that reside in the human gut) and the development of amyloid plaques in the brain (these ‘plaques’ are the hallmarks of Alzheimer’s disease).
The study considered a cohort of 89 people between 65 and 85 years of age, where one group suffered from Alzheimer’s disease (or other neurodegenerative diseases), and the other group did not have any memory problems.
Using brain imaging, the levels of amyloid in the brain were measured, while blood tests measured for various inflammation markers and proteins that are caused by intestinal bacteria.
It was found that certain bacterial products of the microbiota are correlated with the quantity of amyloid plaques in the brain. The next step is therefore for the researchers to identify the specific bacteria, or group of bacteria involved.
This paves the way for potential protective strategies to effectively feed the ‘good’ bacteria in the gut so those at risk can be treated well before the appearance of detectable symptoms.
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