MUSC study: Alzheimer’s disease linked to high fat diets - WCBD-TV: News, Weather, and Sports for Charleston, SC

MUSC study: Alzheimer’s disease linked to high fat diets

Posted: Updated:
Epidemiological and experimental studies point to a link between metabolic diseases and Alzheimer’s-like dementia via common vascular-associated risk factors. Epidemiological and experimental studies point to a link between metabolic diseases and Alzheimer’s-like dementia via common vascular-associated risk factors.

MUSC Press Release

Charleston, S.C. (August 14, 2013) – Recent evidence suggests that metabolic disorders and many diseases frequently develop due to unhealthy lifestyles, such as poor diet and lack of physical activity. Researchers Narayan R. Bhat, Ph.D., Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) neurosciences professor and Lakshmi Thirumangalakudi, Ph.D., Department of Psychiatry, College of Physicians and Surgeons, Columbia University Medical Center and New York State Psychiatric Institute, have found evidence to suggest that what's bad for the body is also bad for the mind in a study published this month in the Journal of Alzheimer's Disease.

"Alzheimer's disease (AD) progressively robs its victims of their memory, mental faculties and independent living," Bhat said. "Although specific genetic mutations have been identified that directly cause the disease, these cases are rare. Our study suggests potential common causes and co-morbidities of metabolic disorders and sporadic cases of Alzheimer's disease and hence an opportunity to develop treatments targeted at improving insulin sensitivity for those more common cases of AD."

Epidemiological and experimental studies point to a link between metabolic diseases and Alzheimer's-like dementia via common vascular-associated risk factors. Although the underlying mechanisms are unclear and complex, certain common features are emerging including inflammation and insulin resistance, leading to changes in metabolic derangement in the brain similar to peripheral organs. In fact, some researchers now describe AD as "type 3 diabetes" –a consequence of insulin deficiency and inaction (i.e., resistance). One of the consequences of altered insulin signaling and resistance in the brain is increased phosphorylation of tau, a brain protein that loses its normal function while becoming toxic in the AD brain.

In their study Bhat and Thirumangalakudi describe brain changes that indicate altered insulin signaling and increased tau phosphorylation in normal mice fed a high-fat and high-cholesterol diet. The hypothesis for the link between vascular disorders and AD-like changes in the brain is that metabolic changes including peripheral inflammation and insulin resistance resulting from high fat intake cause dysfunction in the brain's vascular system that in turn leads to cellular and metabolic changes in the brain similar to what occurs in an AD brain.

  • Charlottesville Police Search for Missing UVA Student

    Charlottesville Police Search for Missing UVA Student

    Monday, September 15 2014 7:53 PM EDT2014-09-15 23:53:05 GMT
    The Charlottesville Police Department is searching for a missing University of Virginia student, Hannah Elizabeth Graham, 18.
    The Charlottesville Police Department is searching for a missing University of Virginia student, Hannah Elizabeth Graham, 18.

  • Slain duty story hits close to home

    Former police officer recalls night he was left paralyzed while in the line of duty

    Former police officer recalls night he was left paralyzed while in the line of duty

    Monday, September 15 2014 6:51 PM EDT2014-09-15 22:51:44 GMT
    A former police officer recalls how he nearly lost his life in the line of duty one evening back in 1970. He was paralyzed from the waist down but didn't let them hold him back from working or helping implement big changes for police officer's training and cars. It's been nearly 44 years since that day Gilbert Smith was ordered to take a drunken suspect found on the road to jail.
    A former police officer recalls how he nearly lost his life in the line of duty one evening back in 1970. He was paralyzed from the waist down but didn't let them hold him back from working or helping implement big changes for police officer's training and cars. It's been nearly 44 years since that day Gilbert Smith was ordered to take a drunken suspect found on the road to jail.
  • Lowcountry says final farewell to fallen deputy

    Lowcountry says final farewell to fallen deputy

    Monday, September 15 2014 6:47 PM EDT2014-09-15 22:47:27 GMT
    Thousands lined the streets to honor Charleston County Sheriff's deputy Joe Matuskovic.The Lowcountry paused to pay its respects to the deputy that was killed in a shootout last Monday night. Streets and highways were shutdown throughout the day so the several miles long procession could take the deputy to his final resting place at Old Saint Andrew's Parish Church Cemetery.
    Thousands lined the streets to honor Charleston County Sheriff's deputy Joe Matuskovic.The Lowcountry paused to pay its respects to the deputy that was killed in a shootout last Monday night. Streets and highways were shutdown throughout the day so the several miles long procession could take the deputy to his final resting place at Old Saint Andrew's Parish Church Cemetery.
Powered by WorldNow

210 W. Coleman Blvd.
Mt. Pleasant, SC 29464

Telephone: 843.216.4875
Fax: 843.881.3410
Email: news@wcbd.com

Can't find something?
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Media General Communications Holdings, LLC. A Media General Company.