Exercise, not diet, benefits Alzheimer’s mouse model

May 29, 2012 § Leave a comment

Diets loaded with fat have been linked to cases of sporadic Alzheimer’s disease. In a forthcoming Paper of the Week in the Journal of Biological Chemistry, Ayae Kinoshita at the Kyoto University Graduate School of Medicine in Japan and colleagues showed that exercise was more effective than diet control in reducing the deposition of the disease’s characteristic plaques and improved memory in mice engineered to overexpress the amyloid precursor protein.

Amyloid precursor protein is implicated in the formation of amyloid plaques. The investigators found that an enzyme that degrades amyloid deposits, neprilysin, was more active in exercising mice than in animals that were put on a diet. Kinoshita and colleagues wrote, “Notably, the effect of the combination treatment (exercise and diet control) on memory and amyloid pathology was not significantly different from that of exercise alone.”

Based on the findings in this mouse model, the investigators suggested that exercise should be given priority as a way to prevent Alzheimer’s disease.

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