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World’s First Tiniest hammer to improve treatments for Brain Injuries and Alzheimer’s Disease

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Alzheimer's, Man, Pixabay

New York, Feb 5, 2017: Ever wondered what happens on the other side of our skulls when we hit our heads? Now, the world’s first tiniest hammer being developed by the US researchers may help understand what happens when force is applied to brain cells, an advance that may help improve treatments for brain injuries as well as Alzheimer’s disease.

The “microHammer” — a tiny cellular-scale machine — can be used to tap, strike, squeeze and poke individual neural progenitors to elicit responses to unlock the mysteries of the brain.

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The device flows through individual cells and subjects each of them to one of a variety of physical forces, the researchers said.

“The microhammer will enable precision measurements of the physical, chemical and biological changes that occur when cells are subjected to mechanical loading, ranging from small perturbations to high-force, high-speed impacts,” Megan Valentine from University of California – Santa Barbara, said in a statement.

The microhammer is currently undergoing the process of characterisation, whereby the types and magnitudes of forces it can apply are being measured and recorded in anticipation of the first set of neuron-smashing experiments.

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The microhammer will provide new insight into the causes and progress of brain injuries due to trauma.

It could also pave the way toward a better understanding of neural conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease as well as traumatic brain injury — a currently incurable and often insidious condition — that affects everyone from soldiers, to athletes in contact sports, to anyone who has an accident, Valentine said. (IANS)

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Keto diet May Help You To Fight Against Alzheimer’s Disease, Says Study

Increasing SIRT3 levels via ketone consumption may be a way to protect interneurons and delay the progression of Alzheimer's disease

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Diet
"Ketogenic" is a term for a low-carb diet (like the Atkins diet). The idea is for you to get more calories from protein and fat and less from carbohydrates. Pixabay

Eating low-carb and high-fat diet can help you fight against Alzheimer’s disease, by protect neurons from death during the progression of Alzheimer’s disease, according to new research in mice.

“Ketogenic” is a term for a low-carb diet (like the Atkins diet). The idea is for you to get more calories from protein and fat and less from carbohydrates. You cut back most on the carbs that are easy to digest, like sugar, soda, pastries and white bread.

Early in the development of Alzheimer’s disease, the brain becomes over excited, potentially through the loss of inhibitory, or GABAergic, interneurons that keep other neurons from signaling too much. Because interneurons require more energy compared to other neurons, they may be more susceptible to dying when they encounter the Alzheimer’s disease protein amyloid beta.

Amyloid beta has been shown to damage mitochondria – the metabolic engine for cells – by interfering with SIRT3, a protein that preserves mitochondrial functions and protects neurons. Researchers from the Society for Neuroscience genetically reduced levels of SIRT3 in mouse models of Alzheimer’s disease.

Diet
Eating low-carb and high-fat diet can help you fight against Alzheimer’s disease, by protect neurons from death during the progression of Alzheimer’s disease, according to new research in mice. Pixabay

Mice with low levels of SIRT3 experienced a much higher mortality rate, more violent seizures and increased interneuron death compared to the mice from the standard Alzheimer’s disease model and control mice.

However, the mice with reduced levels of SIRT3 experienced fewer seizures and were less likely to die when they ate a diet rich in ketones, a specific type of fatty acid. The diet also increased levels of SIRT3 in the mice.

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“Increasing SIRT3 levels via ketone consumption may be a way to protect interneurons and delay the progression of Alzheimer’s disease,” report researchers. (IANS)