LONDON: A vaccine that could cut cases of Alzheimer’s by half has been discovered. The jab, developed by Swedish scientists , claims to delay the onset of the debilitating disease and could be the first step towards finding a cure.
Alzheimer’s is the most common form of dementia and attacks nerves, brain cells and neurotransmitters that carry messages to and from the brain and in India, the cases run into thousands.
The vaccine, known as CAD106, helps patients create protective antibodies to defend against deposits that develop in the brain of sufferers, the Daily Mail reported.
Scientists, according to the Daily Mail, hope the vaccine can delay the onset of Alzheimer’s disease by five years. Researchers from Karolinska Institute in Sweden and from the Swedish Brain Power Network have claimed that their discovery could help people with mild to moderate versions of Alzheimer’s .
They found no serious side effects during the tests, which took place over three years on people aged between 50 and 80.
One in 14 people over 65 years old is affected by the disease , according to the Alzheimer’s Society. The risks increase with age, with around one in six people over 80 years old developing the condition. According to the World Health Organization, dementia is currently the fastest growing global health epidemic.
Alzheimer’s is caused by amyloid precursor protein (APP), a protein that resides in outer membrane of nerve cells, which instead of being broken down, forms a harmful substance calledbeta-amyloid , accumulating as plaques and killing brain cells.
Experts found that 80% of patients in the trials developed their own protective antibodies against beta-amyloid without suffering any side-effects over the three years of the study, the journal Lancet Neurology reports.