A gene that can grow to be mutated and lead to a unique balance disorder also orders the behavior of an enzyme that surges the peril for AD (Alzheimer’s disease), as per to a new study by scientists at MGH (Massachusetts General Hospital). The research was published in the journal Cell and the findings from this study might help to identify novel targets for experimental drugs designed to stop or delay the onset of AD. In 2008, Rudolph E. Tanzi—Neuroscientist and Co-Director of the McCance Center for Brain Health at MGH—along with his colleagues found several genes that are closely linked with AD. They included the ATXN1 gene, which carries the genetic information for creating a protein known as ataxin-1.
It was known that a disparity called “gain of function” mutation into the ATXN1 gene causes a condition known as SCA1 (spinocerebellar ataxia type 1). Reportedly, the SCA1 affects 1–2 people in 100,000 people globally. It causes loss of balance and coordination, amongst other symptoms that can include cognitive issues like memory and learning difficulties. Nonetheless, the ATXN1 mutation that leads to SCA1 is not linked with AD, and the function ataxin-1 has in the disease is unknown. Scientists studied how a gene is involved in a balance disorder and increase the perils of AD. They found that answer to that question finally came by posing another if the loss of ataxin-1 function can cause AD.
On a related note, recently, a study found that the eye-tracking tests might help in predicting who will develop AD. The new research has discovered that it might be possible to foresee if people having mild memory or thinking impairments will develop AD by using eye-tracking technology. Dr. Thom Wilcockson—from the Loughborough University—said that he hopes the research will contribute towards the untimely diagnosis of patients at higher risk of the condition and make sure interventions can be placed in place sooner. The research was published in the journal Aging and stated that eye movement impairments have the prospective to be utilized as a biomarker or an indicator for AD and eye tracking is a potential diagnostic tool.