In a study published in Advanced Materials, researchers found that the rabies virus can help treat neurological disorders like Alzheimer’s. That’s because the gene therapies that are commonly used have to tackle the blood-brain barrier.
- Rabies: children die in MG after contact with bats
- Scientists detect early Alzheimer’s through blood test
So researchers needed to find a way to move therapies across the brain’s protective membrane. The paper in question describes nanoscale capsules that can carry genome-editing tools into organs and then dissolve harmlessly.
By modifying the surfaces of silica nanocapsules with glucose and an amino acid fragment derived from the rabies virus, the researchers found that the nanocapsules could efficiently pass through the blood-brain barrier to achieve gene editing throughout the brain. For now, studies have only been conducted on animals.
The nanocapsule successfully edited genes in the brain of mice, such as one related to Alzheimer’s disease called the amyloid protein gene. The idea, basically, is to achieve greater therapeutic efficacy without risking more invasive methods.
Alzheimer’s: what has science done?
So far, there has been no cure for Alzheimer’s. In this way, all the strategies adopted, from a diagnosis of dementia, are to slow down the evolution of the condition. Fortunately, many studies have focused on finding ways to deal with the condition.
To get an idea, American researchers are currently training an Artificial Intelligence (AI) to identify the frame. The strategy is to analyze patterns of glucose use in the brains of patients who potentially may have dementia. Recently, researchers discovered a hormone therapy that may reduce Alzheimer’s risk in women.
Source: Advanced Materials via Science Blog