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Tag: Ben Gurion University

Israeli Researcher Close to Alzheimer’s Vaccine

MonsonegoThis man, Dr. Alon Monsonego of Ben Gurion University, could be the face put on a real, workable Alzheimer’s vaccine. Alzheimer’s being one of the scariest, most devastating mental diseases imaginable where you pretty much die before you die since your mind is practically erased, this is very encouraging news. That, and cases have increased by 33% since 2005, with over 36 million people expected to be diagnosed with the disease this coming year.

Alzheimer’s destroys the sufferer’s brain by building up plaque deposits in the brain tissue and replacing grey brain matter with chunks of amyloid-beta protein, which gathers like tartar on your teeth. Except it’s in your brain. It starts with memory loss and progresses all the way to total bodily breakdown as the brain literally melts away.

Monsonego determined that introducing A-beta protein into the brain, the very protein that causes the disease, triggers a natural immune response which can be detected in humans. “Stimulating an immune response to A-beta in these humanized mice not only resulted in a highly efficient clearance of A-beta (plaque) from the brain, but also in a markedly reduced inflammatory reaction,” he said.

More research will be needed to ensure that the vaccine is safe before it can be marketed. A few years ago, an Israeli company had received a patent on an Alzheimer’s vaccine, but the vaccine was determined to be too dangerous for human use. We’ll see if this one is safer.

Pot Bellies can be Health Hazards

fattyGot a pot belly or “beer gut” as we Westerners often refer to them? If so, you could be likely to have all kinds of health problems, including being susceptible to a number of serious (and even fatal) diseases.

In a recent study by Ben Gurion University’s Clinical Biochemistry Department, people who carry a large amount of abdominal fat have fat cells that send the wrong kind of internal “communication” to other parts of the body; which eventually results in the onset of a number of serious diseases, including those affecting the heart, liver, pancreas, and other organs.

This Shawarma has nothing to do with the post - but look at it. Now you understand why people in Israel have pot bellies?

This Shawarma has nothing to do with the post - but look at it. Now you understand why people in Israel have pot bellies?

The study, carried out jointly with a group of German scientists (due to this increasing problem among their own citizens) from the University of Leipzig published their findings in the Endocrine Society’s Journal of Endocrinology and Metabolism. The findings determined that large amounts of fat calls store a number of secretions and other unhealthy substances that cause problems in the effective communication between healthy cells and various parts of the body. These communication problems send the wrong messages to important parts of the body, including the brain, resulting in “miss-communication” that can cause problems with proper body metabolism and weight management.

Dr. Assaf Rudich, a senior lecturer in BGU’s Clinical Biochemistry Department, noted that “in obesity, fat (adipose) tissue becomes dysfunctional, and miss-communicates with the other tissues. This places fat tissue at a central junction in mechanisms leading to common diseases attributed to obesity, like Type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular diseases.”

As fat cells become overgrown, they cause a problem with proper amounts of oxygen being delivered to various body tissues, causing inflammation and even death to important body cells. The fat cells also result in high amounts of glucose and fatty acids being send through the bloodstream which put a lot of stress on vital body tissues, resulting in diseases and other harmful conditions.

Samples of abdominal fat tissue were taken during operations in order to study how these tissues affect the normal body “pathways”. In addition, a body protein known as ASK1 was also monitored, as this protein is tied closely to diabetes and cardiovascular diseases, as it predicts whole body insulin resistance. The conclusion is that people need to reduce abdominal fat as much as possible; especially people over age 40.

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