MIAMI - Scientists in Florida are part of a study that's discovered four new genes linked to Alzheimer's disease. That doubles the total number of genes known to contribute to the risk of late-onset Alzheimer's. Researchers from 44 universities, including the University of Miami, helped with the discovery. [audio:http://eunalhee.com/wp-content/uploads/Lhee_alzgenes.mp3|titles=alzgenes|artists=Lhee]
Researchers analyzed the genes of more than 54,000 people across the nation. They compared the DNA of participants who did and did not have Alzheimer's - and they found four new genes common to the Alzheimer's patients.
Scientists hope the discovery could help demystify what causes Alzheimer’s and also help develop new therapies, including preventative ones.
University of Miami’s Margaret Pericak-Vance helped with the genetic and statistical analyses.
"We want to treat Alzheimer’s, and we want to be able to have new targets that we can go after to hopefully develop better treatments or, you know, even a cure at some point," Vance said.
The findings were published this month in the journal Nature Genetics. [HealthyState.org | FPR Spot]