Defenders against Alzheimer’s

Could the key to preserving your brain be in … your bones?!

This is Sandra Tsing Loh with the Loh Down on Science.

Alzheimer’s is a debilitating disease. It’s caused by the build up of a sticky protein that kills neurons – the nervous system’s messenger cells. Our brains have a defense system, immune cells called microglia. Thing is, those cells can go bad, worsening the disease. So what can we do?

At Stanford, Yongjin Yoo and team replaced dysfunctional microglia with immune cells from bone marrow.

They injected healthy myeloid cells from mouse bone marrow into mice with Alzheimer’s disease. Results? These immune cells looked and acted just like normal healthy microglia! They also reduced sticky proteins in the mice’s brains by over ten percent.

This study suggests that microglia replacement could be a viable treatment for Alzheimer’s disease in humans.

From bone to brains, myeloid cells are here to save your neurons! I’m here for it!

Reference: Yoo, Y., Neumayer, G., Shibuya, Y., Mader, M. M.-D., & Wernig, M. (2023). A cell therapy approach to restore microglial TREM2 function in a mouse model of alzheimer’s disease. Cell Stem Cell, 30(8).