Skip to comments.Researchers design Alzheimer's antibodies
Posted on 12/09/2011 8:22:39 AM PST by decimon
A surprisingly simple method to target harmful proteins
Troy, N.Y. Researchers at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute have developed a new method to design antibodies aimed at combating disease. The surprisingly simple process was used to make antibodies that neutralize the harmful protein particles that lead to Alzheimer's disease.
The process is reported in the Dec. 5 Early Edition of the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS). The process, outlined in the paper, titled "Structure-based design of conformation- and sequence-specific antibodies against amyloid β," could be used as a tool to understand complex disease pathology and develop new antibody-based drugs in the future.
Antibodies are large proteins produced by the immune system to combat infection and disease. They are comprised of a large Y-shaped protein topped with small peptide loops. These loops bind to harmful invaders in the body, such as a viruses or bacteria. Once an antibody is bound to its target, the immune system sends cells to destroy the invader. Finding the right antibody can determine the difference between death and recovery.
Scientists have long sought methods for designing antibodies to combat specific ailments. However, the incredible complexity of designing antibodies that only attached to a target molecule of interest has prevented scientists from realizing this ambitious goal.
When trying to design an antibody, the arrangement and sequence of the antibody loops is of utmost importance. Only a very specific combination of antibody loops will bind to and neutralize each target. And with billions of different possible loop arrangements and sequences, it is seemingly impossible to predict which antibody loops will bind to a specific target molecule.
(Excerpt) Read more at eurekalert.org ...
Hence Folding@Home, a brute force method.
"British researchers gave 64 patients with moderate Alzheimer's disease an experimental vaccine designed to eliminate plaque from their brains. Some patients were followed for up to six years.
Autopsies on seven patients who died of Alzheimer's during the study showed that nearly all of the sticky beta-amyloid protein thought to be dangerous had been removed. But all patients still had severe dementia."
Wasn’t is just 2 months ago that they announced that Alzheimer’s was caused by the same bacteria that causes stomach ulcers?
Seems as though they’re still going after the plaques,
which are different than the Tau Protein Tangles.
Hey, let’s do both.
You first though, it’s not my brain...yet.
Yes, the immune system uses a system that introduces random genetic variations and then a selection criteria.
Hmmmmm, randomly created genetic variation and a selection of useful variants - where have I heard of such a thing in biology before?
I will have to think about it! ;)
Not sure they are on the right track. They may be going after one symptom.
I suspect that there can be unintended effects. “After 4 hours head to the E-room”.