Although Alzheimer’s disease is the 5th leading cause of death worldwide, it remains still incurable.
A recent European study investigated the relation between the gut microbiota and the development of Alzheimer’s disease. The researchers found out that systemic inflammation and products of the gut microbiota are the big contributors to the development of amyloid plaques in the brain, which are one of the main features of Alzheimer’s disease.
The gut microbiota contains various bacteria which have pro-inflammatory protein lipopolysaccharide on their membranes. These lipopolysaccharides have been found in amyloid plaques and around vessels in the brains of people with Alzheimer’s disease.
In addition, the gut microbiota produces, among others, various short-chain fatty acids that directly or indirectly affect your brain.
The study confirmed that high levels of lipopolysaccharides and certain short-chain fatty acids (acetate and valerate) contribute to a large amyloid deposit in the brain. Conversely, high levels of another short-chain fatty acid, butyrate, was related to less accumulation of amyloid plaques.
The researchers highlighted that prevention is more important than therapy even with this new knowledge and the development of possible “healthy strains” to fight the disease. Because, once Alzheimer’s disease is diagnosed, it becomes very hard to have an influence on it.
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