Development of new drugs, especially for ailments like Alzheimer's, can be a very tedious and vexing process for researchers. Many times, the newly formed drug doesn't do well real life, can fall short of expectations, or can even lead to a dead end. But sometimes, researchers hit a jackpot and the developed drug not only works as intended but also does wonders for treating other ailments.

Diabetes drug to ward off Alzheimer's

Same is the case with scientists at Lancaster University, where they created a drug that not only works on three diabetes-related targets but also reverses the memory deficit in mice.

This experimental drug targets key hormones which control the body’s sugar level (GLP-1, GLP-2, and glucagon). Besides targeting these hormones, this drug, specifically developed for diabetes type 2, also benefits mice with Alzheimer’s. A report by Science Alert provided a lot of information for this report.

As the drug works on three hormones, it is being called “triple agonist.” This drug was given to mice which were genetically engineered to develop genes for Alzheimer’s. As the genes started to express themselves and the mice exhibited many of the symptoms associated with this ailment, including-but not limited to- reduced memory and compromised cognition, the drug started to do wonders and the mice showed dramatic enhancement in their brain functions.

Professor Christian Holscher, the lead researcher of the study, explained that this drug is the key for the treatment of chronic neurodegenerative disorders, specifically Alzheimer’s. The research was published in the Brain Research journal. Amyloid plaques are linked with the progression of Alzheimer Disease and as these plaques develop, the nerve cells start to regress.

It will be worth mentioning here, that unlike any other cells in the body, nerve cells don’t effectively regenerate or heal. This drug works to protect the nerve cells, reduce the number of amyloid plaques, and fight off inflammation, all of which contribute toward stopping of nerve cell degeneration. After injecting this drug, the mice showed marked improvement in brain functions like learning and memory building.

Magic drug holds promise to cure Alzheimer's

The discovery of a potential treatment for a previously untreatable disease such as Alzheimer’s is great news, but the truth that this drug was initially introduced to manage type 2 diabetes is more than a coincidence. Type 2 diabetes has been correlated with Alzheimer’s a number of times in the past as the two diseases coexist in older people. Researchers have shed light upon the insulin desensitization occurring in Alzheimer’s disease. This desensitization is thought to play a significant role in causing neurodegenerative diseases, particularly because insulin is a growth factor possessing neuroprotective properties.

The treatment for Alzheimer’s patients is yet to be approved as the earliest trials have been performed on animal models only. Scientists are still looking to learn more about the exact link between diabetes and Alzheimer’s. If we are lucky, this might be the Alzheimer’s breakthrough, but further research is necessary.