Dr. Daphne Robakis, writing for ABC News, explains that “with 5.4 million of Americans suffering from Alzheimer’s disease, a proven treatment or cure remains elusive. And the methods scientists are using to study the disease have yet to yield much in the way of understanding, much less treatment, of the disease.
But researchers at the University of California, San Diego have developed a technology using stem cells to more accurately model what goes wrong in diseased brain cells of Alzheimer’s sufferers. Their findings will be published in this week’s issue of the journal Nature.
In the study, researchers took skin cells from patients who died from Alzheimer’s disease. Then, employing newly developed stem-cell technology, they turned them into brain cells to closely replicate those found in living Alzheimer’s patients. This process allows researchers to manipulate the diseased cells in the laboratory for what they hope will be a more effective way to study the disease. In the long run, it is hoped that this research will lead to the discovery of new drugs to treat the disease.”
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