bannerHON
img
HONnews
HONnews
img PATIENT / PARTICULIER img PROFESSIONNEL DE SANTE img WEBMESTRE img
img
 
img
HONcode sites
All Web sites
HONselect
News
Conferences
Images

Themes:
A B C D E F G H I
J K L M N O P Q
R S T U V W X Y Z
Browse archive:
2014: A J J M A M F J
2013: D N O S A

 
  Other news for:
Brain
Hereditary Diseases
Genetics
 Resources from HONselect
Mouse Study May Shed Light on Huntington's Disease
The hereditary brain disease can destroy patients' ability to walk, talk and swallow

By Robert Preidt

WEDNESDAY, March 26, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- An amino acid deficiency might be responsible for the brain degeneration that occurs in people with Huntington's disease, research in mice suggests.

Huntington's is an incurable inherited brain disease. Symptoms typically begin in middle age and include movement and balance problems. Patients can eventually lose the ability to walk, talk and swallow.

Patients with Huntington's have degeneration in up to 90 percent of a brain structure called the corpus striatum, which plays a role in mood, movement and thinking. Although the genetic mutation that causes Huntington's has long been known, the specific cause of this brain degeneration has not been identified, according to a Johns Hopkins University news release.

In the new study, Johns Hopkins researchers discovered that mice that couldn't make the amino acid cysteine had widespread deterioration in the corpus striatum. But the progression of this destruction was slowed when the mice were fed a diet rich in cysteine, which is found in foods such as wheat germ and whey protein, the researchers found.

The mice in the study lacked an enzyme called cystathionine gamma lyase, which helps make cysteine, the researchers said.

The findings, which were published online March 26 in the journal Nature, suggest that the use of cysteine supplementation in Huntington's patients warrants further investigation, according to the researchers.

Scientists note, however, that research with animals often fails to provide similar results in humans.

"Usually it's very hard, if not impossible, to develop straightforward mechanisms that explain what's going on in a disease," team leader Dr. Solomon Snyder, a professor of neuroscience, said in the news release.

"What's even harder is, even if you can find a mechanism that causes a tissue to rot, usually there's nothing you can do about it," Snyder said. "In this case, there is."

More information

The U.S. National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke has more about Huntington's disease.

SOURCE: Johns Hopkins Medicine, news release, March 26, 2014

Copyright © 2014 HealthDay. All rights reserved. URL:http://consumer.healthday.com/Article.asp?AID=686148

Resources from HONselect: HONselect is the HON's medical search engine. It retrieves scientific articles, images, conferences and web sites on the selected subject.
Brain
Huntington Disease
Research Personnel
Brain Diseases
Aptitude
Affect
The list of medical terms above are retrieved automatically from the article.

Disclaimer: The text presented on this page is not a substitute for professional medical advice. It is for your information only and may not represent your true individual medical situation. Do not hesitate to consult your healthcare provider if you have any questions or concerns. Do not use this information to diagnose or treat a health problem or disease without consulting a qualified healthcare professional.
Be advised that HealthDay articles are derived from various sources and may not reflect your own country regulations. The Health On the Net Foundation does not endorse opinions, products, or services that may appear in HealthDay articles.


Home img About us img MediaCorner img HON newsletter img Site map img Ethical policies img Contact