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News Number: 100765808928
Date: Saturday 29 ,November ,2014
Time: 11:38
Service: Scientific
Scientists identify brain's weak spot for dementia

Researchers have identified a weak spot in the brain that is linked to Alzheimer's disease and schizophrenia.

The study, conducted by the Medical Research Council team in United Kingdom, pinpointed the areas in the brain using the MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) scans, according to Press TV.

The study researchers monitored a varied age group of 484 healthy people between 8 and 85 years. The changes that the brain undergoes over time were examined in the participants.

The images unveil that the parts of the brain that developed last, were in fact the ones that showed earliest signs of decline, according to the study published in the journal PNAS.

"Early doctors called schizophrenia 'premature dementia' but until now we had no clear evidence that the same parts of the brain might be associated with two such different diseases,” said Professor Hugh Perry of the Medical Research Council.

“The recent large-scale and detailed study provides an important, and previously missing, link between development, ageing and disease processes in the brain,” Perry also noted.

The discovered regions were linked to "high order" information processing like sight and sound.

When the researchers analyzed scans of patients with Alzheimer's disease and scans of patients with schizophrenia, they found the identified brain regions were affected.

The recent achievement may pave the way for understanding how to prevent brain changes before they occur, the experts say.

Millions suffer from Alzheimer's disease which worsens as it progresses and eventually leads to death. Doctors are still trying to discover ways of diagnosing the disease at an early stage.

Alzheimer's is an age-related brain condition that experts suspect is influenced by both genes and the environment.

Alzheimer's disease plays havoc with the metabolism of brain cells, causing them to stop working and lose connections with each other, and eventually, their death.

This gradual deterioration is what leads to memory failure, difficulty with daily tasks, personality changes, and other features of the brain-wasting disease.

According to the World Health Organization, some 35 million people are afflicted with the disease, while 115 million people are anticipated to get afflicted by 2050.

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