News Video | Policy | GPs | Hospitals | Medical | Mental Health | Welfare | Search

 


Researchers investigate impact of brain protein on memory

Canterbury researchers investigating impact of brain protein on memory loss

July 18, 2014

University of Canterbury researchers are investigating a brain protein which may impact on the memory of people with Alzheimer’s disease.

Memory problems are common in many diseases of the brain and they are the hallmark of dementia, including Alzheimer’s disease.

More than 48,000 New Zealanders had dementia in 2011 and the number is expected to triple by 2050. The financial cost of treating dementia in New Zealand in 2011 was $954 million. University of Canterbury PhD researcher Susan Rapley says there is no effective treatment for memory loss for those with Alzheimer’s.

“This is partly because we need to know more about how molecular problems in the brain link up with the memory symptoms. A better understanding of what is happening within the brain, especially in the early stages of Alzheimer’s disease, will help guide new treatment options. Currently, there is no treatment for Alzheimer’s.

“Our research group is looking at the brain protein called C-type Natriuretic Peptide, or CNP, because we think it may have a role in affecting a person’s memory. We do know that CNP is produced in key regions of the brain strongly associated with memory, but do not know specifically what function it serves.

“Before we can investigate CNP in Alzheimer’s disease, we need to determine its involvement with memory. We are investigating this by measuring CNP in the brain when memory is either stimulated or interfered with. If CNP changes in the brain according to changes in memory, this would suggest it is an important part of the biological processes of memory formation.

“So far, our results show that CNP increases in the brain’s memory network during learning conditions. This appears to be due to a change in the way CNP is metabolised.

“This suggests we may be on the right track. If CNP does turn out to be involved in memory, this might stimulate future research into the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease and other diseases with similar memory problems.”

Rapley was a co-winner in the university’s annual Tweet your Thesis event. Students who entered were allowed only six tweets to describe their thesis work in less than 840 characters.

Her project is being supervised by University of Canterbury’s psychology professor John Dalrymple-Alford.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines

 
Scoop Review Of Books: The Typewriter Factory

I finished reading Don’t Dream It’s Over not long after it came out last August. I even started writing a review, which took something of an ‘I’m sorry people, but it’s already over’ approach. I’ve been pretty negative about journalism as it’s practiced in the mainstream (or MSM, or corporate media or liberal media or whatever terminology you prefer) for quite some time (see for example Stop the Press), and I believe the current capitalist media model is destructive and can’t be reformed. More>>

Sheep Update: Solo World Shearing Record Broken In Southland

Southland shearer Leon Samuels today set a new World solo eight-hours strongwool ewe-shearing after a tally of 605 in a wool shed north of Gore. More>>

ALSO:

Howard Davis Review: Dick Frizzell At The Solander Gallery

One of the most influential and celebrated contemporary Pop artists working in New Zealand, Dick Frizzell is mostly known for his appropriation of kitsch Kiwiana icons, which he often incorporates into cartoon-like paintings and lithographs. Not content with adhering to one particular style, he likes to adopt consciously unfashionable styles of painting, in a manner reminiscent of Roy Lichtenstein. More>>

Old Music: Pop Icon Adam Ant Announces NZ Tour

Following his recent sold out North American and UK tours, Adam Ant is celebrating the 35th anniversary of the release of his landmark KINGS OF THE WILD FRONTIER album with a newly-remastered reissue (Sony Legacy) and Australasian tour. More>>

Scoop Review Of Books:
Looking Back

Writing a memoir that appeals to a broad readership is a difficult undertaking. As an experienced communicator, Lloyd Geering keeps the reader’s interest alive through ten chapters (or portholes) giving views of different aspects of his life in 20th-century New Zealand. More>>

Scoop Review Of Books: Purple (and Violet) Prose

This is the second recent conjoint publication by Reeve and Stapp; all to do with esoteric, arcane and obscure vocabulary – sesquipedalian, anyone – and so much more besides. Before I write further, I must stress that the book is an equal partnership between words and images and that one cannot thrive without the other. More>>

Get More From Scoop

 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
Health
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news