According to a recent study, a combination of 2 existing drugs, gemfibrosil and retinoic acid, might not only fight brain damage caused by Alzheimer’s, but even improve cognition! Gemfibrosil (or Lopid) is a cholesterol-lowering drug, and retinoic acid,a vitamin A derivative, is widely used to treat various diseases.
Both drugs in combination seem to influence the brain’s astrocytes – cells that are involved in the accumulation of toxic amyloid-beta plaques, which damage neurons and destroy the brain, resulting in memory loss and other symptoms of cognitive decline. The combined drugs turned to force astrocytes to reverse their behaviour, and reduce amyloid-beta in the brain, improving brain health.
To be more specific, retinoic acid stimulated astrocytes in the studied cell cultures and in Alzheimer’s mouse models to destroy amyloid-beta through the activation of the low-density lipoprotein cholesterol receptor (PPARα) and the cholesterol-lowering drug gemfibrozil triggered the reduction of amyloid-beta.
This means that the combination of low doses gemfibrozil and retinoic acid might be used in the future to program astrocytes to destroy the accumulation of plaques and preventing the brain from damage. Of course, the results of the study have to be replicated in human clinical trials, but they give a good hope for potential treatment therapy of Alzheimer’s!
Curious? HERE is the source