Future Directions in the Treatment of Alzheimers Disease

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It is becoming clear that Alzheimer's disease is a multi-factorial syndrome and that unraveling its causes may be difficult. However, as knowledge of the mechanisms of degeneration are elucidated, this knowledge can be applied to the development of therapies to alleviate the symptoms and hopefully to prevent the disease or inhibit its progression.

Several new directions in therapeutic approaches are being investigated. One is to lower Ap peptide levels and thus reduce Ap deposits through the use of molecules that prevent the proteolytic cleavage of amyloid precursor protein or through a novel immunization technique that would use antibodies to remove the Ap peptides from the cells and brain. Other approaches being examined are targeted at blocking the more downstream effects, such as the use of antiinflammatory agents and antioxidants.

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