SliceMaster used to explore Alzheimers pathology

SliceMaster used to explore Alzheimers pathology

Alzheimers disease is the most common form of age-related dementia which, sadly, has no cure. It is therefore, crucial for researchers to reveal the underlying pathology of the disease. The symptoms primarily manifest as cognitive impairment; however Alzheimers is a physical disease which includes the development of plaque-link deposits in the brain.

There is considerable evidence to suggest that the plaque deposits (amyloid – Aβ assemblies) are the primary, harmful element causing impaired brain function; but the exact mechanism has not been revealed. A recent study published in Biochemistry used the popular approach of generating synthetic Aβ assemblies, to test the relevance of different factors (such as size and molecular weight) to the degree of synaptotoxicity.

The study, which was part of a collaboration between Boehringer Ingelheim Pharma GmbH and the University of Ulm, utilised a range of techniques to characterise size and molecular weight of the different Aβ assemblies. Their structural stability was then tested to determine the affect this had on neurotoxicity. Electrophysiological recordings were carried out using Scientifica's SliceMaster multi-slice recording system, and NPI electronics data acquisition systems, to record LTP and fEPSPs in different Aβ preparations. This helped the groups elucidate the relationship between differing soluble Aβ assemblies and the various mechanisms for affecting bioactivity.

The team of researchers were able to reveal that different types of soluble Aβ aggregates (Globular and Protofibrillar) impaired neurotransmission by different mechanisms.

Globular and Protofibrillar Aβ Aggregates Impair Neurotransmission by Different Mechanisms

Jens Moreth, Katja S. Kroker, Daniel Schwanzer, Cathrin Schnack, ChristineA. F von Arnim, Bastian Hengerer, Holger Rosenbrock and Lothar Kissmaul
Biochemistry, 2013, 52 (8), pp 1466–1476
DOI: 10.1021/bi3016444
Publication Date (Web): February 1, 2013

Full paper here

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