Alzheimer’s has been thought of as a disease originating in the brain. Recent research has shown that beta-amyloid of Alzheimer’s may be a whole body problem. Beta-amyloid is made in blood vessels and muscles and can pass through a weakened blood-brain barrier as we age. In this study researchers used conjoined mice to show how beta-amyloid in the body can accumulate in the brain and manifest signs of Alzheimer’s. Healthy mice were conjoined to mice modified to carry a mutant human gene that produces high levels of a protein called beta-amyloid. In people with Alzheimer’s disease, beta-amyloid forms clumps, or plaques, that limit circulation to the brain cells.
Normal mice that had been joined to genetically modified partners for a year, began showing signs of Alzheimer’s disease. The lead researcher said the beta-amyloid traveled from the genetically-modified mice, to the brains of their normal partners, where it accumulated and began to inflict damage. Not only did the normal mice develop plaques, but also a pathology similar to tangles — twisted protein strands that form inside brain cells, disrupting their function and eventually killing them. Knowing this information, how beta-amyloid from the body can build in the brain, it is important to improve the lymphatic system to help circulation and natural detoxification of cellular waste like beta-amyloid.