New research shows that proper oral hygiene may help prevent Alzheimer's disease.It confirmed that the bacteria causing gum disease are also present in the brains of people who suffer from Alzheimer's disease.What is more, the presence of the same microorganisms leads to brain changes that are typical of the disease in the case of mice.
It turns out that bacterial infections may play a part in Alzheimer's disease, while some scientists are not convinced that it is Porphyromonasgingivalis (a species of bacteria which the research concerned) being behind the disorder.
Neurobiologist Robert Moir of Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) in Boston and the Harvard University (his work suggests that the beta-amyloid protein creates the atherosclerosis plaque in the brains of people suffering from Alzheimer's disease as a protective reaction to the activity of microbes) states that he fully subscribes to the idea that the microorganism may be a facilitator here.He is still not convinced that it is responsible for Alzheimer's disease.
The new research was published in Science Advances and sponsored by the biotech startup Cortexyme Inc. seated in San Francisco, California.Its co-founder Stephen Dominy is a psychiatrist who became intrigued by the fact that Alzheimer's disease could be based on a foundation related to an infection back in the 1990's.He was treating people affected by HIV at the University of California in San Francisco at the time.Dominy initiated the project by searching for P. gingivalis in the brain tissue of deceased Alzheimer's patients.By cooperating with Europe-based labs, as well as labs in the U.S., New Zealand and Australia, the Cortexyme team confirmed earlier findings on that P. gingivalis may be found in the brains of deceased persons who suffered from Alzheimer's disease.In over 90% cases, toxic enzymes produced by the bacteria named gingipains were detected in relevant brain samples.Brains containing more gingipains also had greater quantities of proteins related to Alzheimer's disease ? tau and ubiquitin.What is more, the DNA of this microbe was also found in the spinal fluid of living patients.