Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Nanowired drugs for Alzheimer's

Caregivers, and healthcare professionals,here is some great information

Here is a great dementia resource for caregivers and healthcare professionals,

Your residents will love the Amazon Kindle Fire

Here is information on being the best caregiver you can be

Here is a way for nurses administrators, social workers and other health care  professionals to get an easyceu or two

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The Dementia Caregiver's Little Book of Hope [Kindle Edition]

Neuroscience News


Summary: Using titanate nanowires treated with cerebrolysin, researchers have been able to target delivery to the brain and through the central nervous system. Researchers report the use of nanowires to deliver drugs could be beneficial in the treatment of Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and other neurodegenerative diseases.
Source: University of Arkansas.
Millions of Americans suffer from neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. Researchers have identified promising new treatments, such as cerebrolysin, but current clinical approaches are ineffective because critical concentrations of the drug dissipate within the body before reaching the blood-brain barrier and central nervous system.
To address this problem, researchers have focused on various delivery vehicles for sustained and targeted drug release. An effective, targeted approach would eliminate the need for inefficient, high dosages that cause adverse side effects.
In recent years, biomedical engineers have experimented with nanomaterials as an approach to targeted delivery. Under the direction of Ryan Tian, associate professor of chemistry at the University of Arkansas, doctoral student Asya Ozkizilcik has improved the nanowiring of drugs for an international team of researchers who are working on a new method for treating neurodegenerative diseases.
Ozkizilcik worked with titanate, a bioceramic material made of titanium dioxide. Titanate has many advantages. Its nanowires are chemically inert and therefore do not interact with biological components. In addition to biocompatibility, the nanowires are resistant to corrosion in biological fluids, which is ideal for sustained, in vivo drug release without harming cells or tissues.
Image of an alzheimer's brain.
“We believe titanate nanowires could be considered as potential drug delivery tools for neurodegenerative diseases and may be translated into clinical use in future,” Ozkizilcik said. NeuroscienceNews.com image is in the public domain.
Ozkizilcik made the titanate nanowires in an autoclave treatment and then loaded cerebrolysin onto the nanowires. Though detailed mechanisms are unclear, the nanoparticles may prolong the intact delivery of cerebrolysin all the way to blood-brain barrier, where high concentrations of the drug are then released into the brain. The drug’s efficacy was tested on rat models with co-administration of mesenchymal stem cells. Mesenchymal stem cells have been used for developing therapeutics for various autoimmune and other diseases.
Ozkizilcik’s research is part of the international team’s broader goal of finding a more effective treatment for neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. The international team has also demonstrated efficacy of this treatment on a Parkinson’s disease model after traumatic brain injury.
“We believe titanate nanowires could be considered as potential drug delivery tools for neurodegenerative diseases and may be translated into clinical use in future,” Ozkizilcik said.

Monday, November 20, 2017

Unusual sigh \of Alzheimer's

Caregivers, and healthcare professionals,here is some great information

Here is a great dementia resource for caregivers and healthcare professionals,

Your residents will love the Amazon Kindle Fire

Here is information on being the best caregiver you can be

Here is a way for nurses administrators, social workers and other health care  professionals to get an easyceu or two

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The Dementia Caregiver's Little Book of Hope [Kindle Edition]



This simple test can help to predict Alzheimer’s disease.



Being unaware of memory loss is actually an important warning sign for developing Alzheimer’s disease, new research finds.
People who were unaware of their own memory problems — known as anosognosia — were 64% more likely to develop Alzheimer’s within 5 years.
On the other hand, if you are worried about memory loss, but your partner isn’t, then it’s probably not Alzheimer’s.
Dr. Philip Gerretsen, the study’s lead author, said:
“If patients complain of memory problems, but their partner or caregiver isn’t overly concerned, it’s likely that the memory loss is due to other factors, possibly depression or anxiety.
They can be reassured that they are unlikely to develop dementia, and the other causes of memory loss should be addressed.”
The conclusions come from the largest ever study on the self-awareness of dementia.
Over one thousand people aged 55 to 90 were involved.
Being unaware of memory problems predicted the shift from mild cognitive impairment to Alzheimer’s disease, the researchers found.

Saturday, November 18, 2017

Green tea blocks Alzheimer's

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Here is a great dementia resource for caregivers and healthcare professionals,

Your residents will love the Amazon Kindle Fire

Here is information on being the best caregiver you can be

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The Dementia Caregiver's Little Book of Hope [Kindle Edition]

McMaster University

DIET NEWS: McMaster University uncovered new clues on how EGCG in green tea blocks the Alzheimer’s cascade. Their research was on the cover of the Journal of the American Chemical Society. Learn how it works. 




Green tea is widely considered to be beneficial for the brain. The antioxidant and detoxifying properties of green tea extracts help fight catastrophic diseases such as Alzheimer’s. However, scientists have never fully understood how they work at the molecular level and how they could be harnessed to find better treatments. 

Research from McMaster University is shedding new light on those underlying mechanisms. Preclinical evidence suggests that the green tea compound known as EGCG interferes with the formation of toxic assemblies (oligomers), one of the prime suspects in the early steps of the molecular cascade that leads to cognitive decline in Alzheimer’s patients. 



“At the molecular level, we believe EGCG coats toxic oligomers and changes their ability to grow and interact with healthy cells,” explains Giuseppe Melacini, lead author and a professor in the Departments of Chemistry and Chemical Biology as well as of Biochemistry and Biomedical Sciences at McMaster, who has worked on Alzheimer’s-related research for 15 years. 

The findings, which are the results of a decade of advancements in nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) methodology and are featured in the cover page of the Journal of the American Chemical Society, could lead to new therapies and further drug discovery, say researchers. 

Despite decades of research, the causes of Alzheimer’s remain not fully understood, and treatment options are limited. According to the latest census numbers, seniors living in Canada now outnumber children, dramatically increasing the need for effective drugs and prevention. By some estimates, the number of Canadians with dementia is expected to rise to 937,000 by the year 2031, an increase of 66 per cent compared to current numbers. 

“We all know that currently there is no cure for Alzheimer’s once symptoms emerge, so our best hope is early intervention. That could mean using green tea extracts or their derivatives early on, say 15 to 25 years before any symptoms ever set in” says Melacini. 

Next, researchers hope to tackle nagging problems such as how to modify EGCG and similar molecules so they can be used effectively as a food additive, for example. EGCG is unstable at room temperature and notoriously difficult to deliver into the human body, particularly the brain. 

“Food additives could prove to be a crucial therapy or adjuvant” says Melacini. “It will be important to capitalize on them early in life to increase the odds of healthy aging, in addition to exercise and a healthy lifestyle.” 


REFERENCE:

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Does too much iron cause dementia

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The Dementia Caregiver's Little Book of Hope [Kindle Edition]



IRON accumulation within neurons can cause brain aging and dementia. A fast-aging African fish has helped researchers discover why. Find out how it works and what you should do about it. 




During aging as well as during Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s disease, iron accumulates in the human brain. Now, researchers found that in vertebrates, a microRNA called miR-29 inhibits these deposits – possibly offering new ways to treat Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease as well as strokes. Results were published in the Journal BMC Biology on February 13, 2017.

Anti-Aging Molecule in the Brain

As we get older, our brain ages. Cognitive abilities decline and the risk of developing neurodegenerative diseases like dementia, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease or having a stroke steadily increases. 

Aging in fast motion: The natural lifespan of N. furzeri is only few months (left: male of long-lived strain, aged 6 months; right: geriatric male aged 13 months). The African fish was used as aging model by researchers from Jena (Germany) and Pisa (Italy) to show that neurons are protected from iron-accumulation by an anti-aging microRNA. The results could offer a new approach for the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases. Credit: FLI/Grimm/Kästner
A possible cause is the accumulation of iron molecules within neurons, which seems to be valid for all vertebrates. In a collaborative research project within the consortium JenAge, researchers from the Leibniz Institute on Aging – Fritz Lipmann Institute (FLI) in Jena, Germany, and the Scuola Normale Superiore (SNS) in Pisa, Italy, found that this iron accumulation is linked to a microRNA called miR-29. This little molecule has so far been known to act as a tumor suppressor, hindering the proliferation of cancer cells. 

However, clearly, miR-29 also regulates whether or not iron can be deposited in neurons. Using the African fish Nothobranchius furzeri – the shortest-living vertebrate that can be kept under laboratory conditions – the team of Alessandro Cellerino showed a large increase of iron deposits in fish where miR-29 had been suppressed, which led to premature brain aging. In contrast, healthy fish showed the more miR-29 in their neurons, the older they were. Hence, miR-29 acts as a kind of anti-aging molecule during aging, inhibiting the accumulation of iron in neurons.

New Way to Treat Dementia?

„We strongly believe that our results are relevant for humans as well“, says Alessandro Cellerino, Professor of Physiology at SNS in Pisa and guest scientist at the FLI, who is one of the study’s leaders. In fact, the link between an increased iron accumulation and neurodegenerative diseases or strokes in humans has been known for some time; there are also results showing a reduced concentration of miR-29 in these diseases. However, it is totally new that miR-29 acts as molecular switch that inhibits iron accumulation. “These results are surprising – and very promising, because the development of miR-29-based pharmaceuticals for cancer therapy is already ongoing. This may offer a head start for the development of new therapies for Parkinson’s or Alzheimer’s disease and for the treatment of strokes as well”, Cellerino adds.

First Biomedical Discovery in New Fish Model Has Great Potential

African killifish Nothobranchius furzeri has only recently been introduced as animal model in aging research. It was the deciphering of the fish’s genome in late 2015 by the Leibniz Institute on Aging (FLI) that laid the foundation for genetic studies in this fast-aging vertebrate. “The investment of ten years, which it took us and our collaborators to decipher the genome, now starts to pay off”, explains Prof. K. Lenhard Rudolph, who is the FLI’s Scientific Director. And Mario Baumgart, a Postdoc at the FLI that was involved in the study, adds: “There’s no other vertebrate showing such a rapid aging as this little fish. It is like aging in fast motion. Moreover, 90% of human genes can be found in the fish as well, making almost all knowledge gained from N. furzeri transferable to humans.” This is why the results about the molecular switch miR-29, which were published on February 13, 2017 in the journal BMC Biology are so promising and mean a further step towards the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases.

Should I Worry?

Older people (male or female) are not prone to accumulating excess iron from a balanced healthy diet, moderate supplementation or alcohol consumption. This age group can potentially have toxic levels of iron in their organs and glands, if they abuse alcohol, consuming excessively of nicotine products (to stop smoking), on hormone replacement therapy, have B12 deficiencies, or are receiving repeated blood transfusion. 

Although iron is an essential element for healthy life, too much iron can overwhelm the body’s natural storage capability leading to oxidative stress, tissue damage, and early aging. Iron is particularly dangerous and can catalyze these processes even in small amounts (less than a few extra grams) when mixed with other risk factors such as obesity, family history of diabetes or heart disease, inadequate consumption of antioxidants (fruits and vegetables), hormone replacement therapy, unhealthy cholesterol levels, smoking and regular alcohol consumption and for women 

who no longer menstruate


Damage from Too Much Iron

Cell and tissue damage caused by iron can either initiate and/or contribute to the following causes of that can shorten lifespan or cause sudden death:
  • Cirrhosis of the liver
  • Cardiovascular diseases
  • Cancer (particularly cancers of the liver and colon)
  • Type II diabetes
  • Septicemia (excessive iron nourishes dangerous microbe colonization)
  • Early onset neurodegenerative diseases (Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases, among others)
Individual symptoms and degree of expression will vary between people (as will the amounts of stored iron). Excessive body iron accumulation can also lead to depression, loss of muscle mass and strength, enlargement and impairment of liver and spleen, loss of body hair, hypothyroidism, loss of libido (sexual interest) and function, with noticeable changes (darkening) of skin color, chronic fatigue and joint pain (especially in the first two knuckles of the hand referred to as “iron fist”.) Too much iron should be suspect in the presence of any of these symptoms. In women, the greatest risk for and indicator of suspect iron overload is when the monthly period stops for whatever reason: taking birth control pills, hysterectomy or menopause. With the monthly blood loss from a period iron is also lost, keeping excess iron under control. 

Fortunately for most, iron metabolism is tightly regulated by their genes. Those lucky ones are similar to people who seem to be able to eat as much as they want and not get fat. Some people can consume plenty of iron-packed red meat and even imbibe in some potentially unhealthy habits, and yet not be further harmed by the invisible threat of adding too much iron to that potentially unhealthy mix. That’s because their metabolisms don’t permit absorption of any more iron than what’s needed for the body to function properly, which includes about one extra gram stored in reserve. 

For older people with genetic hemochromatosis who also have a tendency or condition causing blood loss, the extra bit of stored iron may protect them from iron deficiency and anemia.

Diseases or conditions that can produce too much iron in the elderly include:

  • Menopause (females)
  • Genetic: hemochromatosis (HHC) or iron overload; for whites: type I (classic) hemochromatosis caused by mutations of HFE; four rarer non-HFE related disease include type 2 (A and B) hemochromatosis (juvenile hemochromatosis onset before age 30), type 3 hemochromatosis (transferrin receptor 2 hemochromatosis), type 4 (A and B) hemochromatosis (ferroportin disease), and a(hypo) ceruloplasminemia
  • Genetic iron loading for non-whites: not fully known but suspect is for mutations of genes that regulate hepcidin, transferrin receptor 2 or the ferroportin gene; (Note: these mutations may also occur in white females as modifiers of HFE).
  • Genetic or acquired chronic hemolytic anemia (mechanical heart valve, blood cell disorders, enzyme deficiencies and rare cases autoimmune disease) Acquired sideroblastic anemia
  • Acquired iron overload from blood transfusion, excessive alcohol consumption, excessive use of iron supplements, hormone replacement or chronic use of nicotine products (to stop smoking)
  • Detection (iron tests)
  • Diet
  • Therapy
RESEARCH REFERENCE:
  • Ripa R, Dolfi L, Terrigno M, Pandolfini L, Savino A, Arcucci V, Groth M, Terzibasi Tozzini E, Baumgart M, Cellerino A. MicroRNA miR-29 controls a compensatory response to limit neuronal iron accumulation during adult life and aging. BMC Biology 2017, 15:9, DOI: 10.1186/s12915-017-0354-x.

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Innovative therapy for Alzheimer's

Here is a great dementia resource for caregivers and healthcare professinals,

Here is information on being the best caregiver you can be

Here is a way for nurses administrators, social workers and other health care professionals to get an easyceu or two









Dementia patients at Beatitudes are allowed practically anything that brings comfort, even an alcoholic “nip at night,” said Tena Alonzo, director of research. “Whatever your vice is, we’re your folks,” she said.




Once, Ms. Alonzo said: “The state tried to cite us for having chocolate on the nursing chart. They were like, ‘It’s not a medication.’ Yes, it is. It’s better than Xanax.”



It is an unusual posture for a nursing home, but Beatitudes is actually following some of the latest science. Research suggests that creating positive emotional experiences for Alzheimer’s patients diminishes distress and behavior problems.



In fact, science is weighing in on many aspects of taking care of dementia patients, applying evidence-based research to what used to be considered subjective and ad hoc.



With virtually no effective medical treatment for Alzheimer’s yet, most dementia therapy is the caregiving performed by families and nursing homes. Some 11 million people care for Alzheimer’s-afflicted relatives at home. In nursing homes, two-thirds of residents have some dementia.



Caregiving is considered so crucial that several federal and state agencies, including the Department of Veterans Affairs, are adopting research-tested programs to support and train caregivers. This month, the Senate Special Committee on Aging held a forum about Alzheimer’s caregiving.



“There’s actually better evidence and more significant results in caregiver interventions than there is in anything to treat this disease so far,” said Lisa P. Gwyther, education director for the Bryan Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center at Duke University.



The National Institute on Aging and the Administration on Aging are now financing caregiving studies on “things that just kind of make the life of an Alzheimer’s patient and his or her caregiver less burdensome,” said Sidney M. Stahl, chief of the Individual Behavioral Processes branch of the Institute on Aging. “At least initially, these seem to be good nonpharmacological techniques.”



Techniques include using food, scheduling, art, music and exercise to generate positive emotions; engaging patients in activities that salvage fragments of their skills; and helping caregivers be more accepting and competent.



Changing the Mood



Some efforts involve stopping anti-anxiety or antipsychotic drugs, used to quell hallucinations or aggression, but potentially harmful to dementia patients, who can be especially sensitive to side effects. Instead, some experts recommend primarily giving drugs for pain or depression, addressing what might be making patients unhappy.



Others recommend making cosmetic changes to rooms and buildings to affect behavior or mood.



A study in The Journal of the American Medical Association found that brightening lights in dementia facilities decreased depression, cognitive deterioration and loss of functional abilities. Increased light bolsters circadian rhythms and helps patients see better so they can be more active, said Elizabeth C. Brawley, a dementia care design expert not involved in the study, adding, “If I could change one thing in these places it would be the lighting.”



Several German nursing homes have fake bus stops outside to keep patients from wandering; they wait for nonexistent buses until they forget where they wanted to go, or agree to come inside.



And Beatitudes installed a rectangle of black carpet in front of the dementia unit’s fourth-floor elevators because residents appear to interpret it as a cliff or hole, no longer darting into elevators and wandering away.



“They’ll walk right along the edge but don’t want to step in the black,” said Ms. Alonzo, who finds it less unsettling than methods some facilities use, bracelets that trigger alarms when residents exit. “People with dementia have visual-spatial problems. We’ve actually had some people so wary of it that when we have to get them on the elevator to take them somewhere, we put down a white towel or something to cover it up.”



When elevator doors open, Beatitudes staff members stand casually in front, distracting residents with “over-the-top” hellos, she said: “We look like Cheshire cats,” but “who’s going to want to get on the elevator when here’s this lovely smiling person greeting you? It gets through to the emotional brain.”



New research suggests emotion persists after cognition deteriorates. In a University of Iowa study, people with brain damage producing Alzheimer’s-like amnesia viewed film clips evoking tears and sadness (“Sophie’s Choice,” “Steel Magnolias”), or laughter and happiness (Bill Cosby, “America’s Funniest Home Videos”).



Six minutes later, participants had trouble recalling the clips. But 30 minutes later, emotion evaluations showed they still felt sad or happy, often more than participants with normal memories. The more memory-impaired patients retained stronger emotions.

Sunday, November 12, 2017

Best ways to dress if you have dementia

Caregivers, and healthcare professionals,here is some great information

Here is a great dementia resource for caregivers and healthcare professionals,

Your residents will love the Amazon Kindle Fire

Here is information on being the best caregiver you can be

Here is a way for nurses administrators, social workers and other health care  professionals to get an easyceu or two

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The Dementia Caregiver's Little Book of Hope [Kindle Edition]


National Institute on Aging


People with Alzheimer’s often need more time and preparation to dress. It's important to allow the person to dress on his or her own for as long as possible. Here are some tips. 




People with Alzheimer’s disease often need more time to dress. It can be hard for them to choose their clothes or they might wear the wrong clothing for the season. It's important to allow the person to dress on their own for as long as possible. 

Here is a checklist of tips that may help:

    Lay out clothes in the order the person should put them on, such as underwear first, then pants, then a shirt, and then a sweater.
  • Hand the person one thing at a time, or give step-by-step dressing instructions.
  • Put away some clothes in another room to reduce the number of choices. Keep only one or two outfits in the closet or dresser.
  • Keep the closet locked if needed.
  • Buy three or four sets of the same clothes if the person wants to wear the same clothing every day.
  • Buy loose-fitting, comfortable clothing, such as sports bras, cotton socks and underwear, and sweat pants and shorts with elastic waistbands.
  • Avoid girdles, control-top pantyhose, knee-high nylons, high heels, and tight socks.
  • Use Velcro® tape or large zipper pulls for clothing instead of shoelaces, buttons, or buckles.
  • Try slip-on shoes that won’t slide off or shoes with Velcro® straps.

Friday, November 10, 2017

Make sure those with dementia eat right

Caregivers, and healthcare professionals,here is some great information

Here is a great dementia resource for caregivers and healthcare professionals,

Your residents will love the Amazon Kindle Fire

Here is information on being the best caregiver you can be

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The Dementia Caregiver's Little Book of Hope [Kindle Edition]

UNIVERSITY OF EAST ANGLIA

With dementia, it's not just what you eat. It's also how and where you eat. 




Eating together, providing social support and interaction during meals could help people with dementia avoid dehydration and malnutrition - according to new NIHR-funded research from the University of East Anglia.

The new findings reveal that while no interventions were unequivocally successful, promising approaches focused on a holistic approach to mealtimes.

The team found that eating family-style meals with care givers, playing music, and engaging with multisensory exercise - could all help boost nutrition, hydration and quality of life among people with dementia.

Lead researcher Dr Lee Hooper, from UEA's Norwich Medical School, said: "The risk of dehydration and malnutrition are high in older people, but even higher in those with dementia.

"Malnutrition is associated with poor quality of life so understanding how to help people eat and drink well is very important in supporting health and quality of life for people with dementia


"We wanted to find out what families or carers can do to help people with dementia eat well and drink enough."

The team systematically reviewed research from around the world and assessed the effectiveness of 56 interventions which all aimed to improve, maintain, or facilitate food or drink intake among more than 2,200 people with dementia.

Interventions tested included changing the colour of the plate, increasing exercise, waitress service, playing different types of music, singing, doing tai-chi, creating a home-like eating environment, providing nutrition supplements, and boosting the social aspect of eating.

They also looked at whether better education and training for formal or informal care-givers could help, as well as behavioural interventions - such as giving encouragement for eating.

The research team assessed whether these interventions improved hydration status and body weight, and whether the intervention helped older people to enjoy the experience of eating or drinking, and improved their quality of life.

Dr Hooper said: "We found a number of promising interventions - including eating meals with care-givers, having family-style meals, facilitating social interaction during meals, longer mealtimes, playing soothing mealtime music, doing multisensory exercise and providing constantly accessible snacks.

"Providing education and support for formal and informal care-givers were also promising.

"But one of the problems of this research is that many of the studies we looked at were too small to draw any firm conclusions - so no interventions should be clearly ruled in or out and more research in this area is needed.

"It is probably not just what people with dementia eat and drink that is important for their nutritional wellbeing and quality of life - but a holistic mix of where they eat and drink, the atmosphere, physical and social support offered, the understanding of formal care-givers, and levels of physical activity enjoyed."

MORE INFORMATION:
The research was undertaken in collaboration with AgeUK Norfolk, NorseCare, the University of Hertfordshire, Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital, Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust, and King's College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust.

It was funded by a National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Fellowship Award and supported by the NIHR East of England Collaboration for Leadership in Applied Health Research and Care (CLAHRC).

'Effectiveness of interventions to indirectly support food and drink intake in people with dementia: Eating and Drinking Well IN dementiA (EDWINA) systematic review' is published in the journal BioMed Central (BMC) Geriatrics on May 4, 2016.

Fitness is important in dementia prevention. Click below for more info