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Updated: Mar 1

Gamma-Inducing Brain Stimulation in Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Dementias

by Emiliano Santarnecchi

Thanks to advances in public health and medicine, the life expectancy of the world population continues to lengthen. While longer lifespan is a unique opportunity for society to benefit from the wisdom and experience of the elderly, aging is however also the greatest risk factor for neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer’s disease. A fundamental neurobiological substrate of cognitive decline and neurodegeneration appears to involve alteration of neuroinflammatory processes with associated deposition of aberrant proteins in the brain, such as amyloid-β (Aβ) and phosphorylated tau (p-tau). Recent pre-clinical work from MIT reveals that induction of fast brain oscillations in the gamma band in mice can modulate activity of microglia, modify inflammatory brain processes, and lead to clearance of Aβ and p-tau deposition in a mouse model of Alzheimer’s disease. Translation of such findings to humans could have transformative impact for patients with Alzheimer’s disease and related Dementias, also in light of recent failures of drug-based trials.

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February 23, 2021 16:00 PM GMT+1 / 10:00 AM EST