Researchers of a recent study have found that niacin (also known as vitamin B3) slows down the progression of Alzheimers in a mouse model. Niacin seems to change microglia response to amyloid plaques.

We receive niacin through our diet and need it a.o. to maintain the metabolism of your whole body. However, according to the study, the brain uses niacin in a different manner. The study showed that after the Alzheimer’s mouse models received niacin, they had fewer plaques and improved cognition. The researchers explained that niacin activates a highly-selective receptor (HCAR2) of the immune cells, which are related to amyloid plaques, and stimulates beneficial actions from these immune cells.

The next step is to confirm these results on people with Alzheimer’s. The good news is that there is already an ongoing clinical pilot trial to investigate the effects of niacin on the human brain. Let’s hope that this trial brings us good news on the effectiveness of niacin in treating Alzheimer’s!

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Tatsiana Haponava, PhD

a certified nutrition coach, educator and researcher with a PhD degree

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