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You're over the hill and — along with everything else — your memory is slipping. Your doctor gives you a pill and, suddenly, you can remember your high school locker combination.
Science fiction? Maybe not. New research out of the U.S. holds out the hope of a superhuman assist for failing memories — and a badly-needed new therapy for Alzheimer's patients.
Read more: www.canada.com...
Br J Pharmacol. 2005 Apr;144(7):961-71.
Neuritic regeneration and synaptic reconstruction induced by withanolide A.
Kuboyama T, Tohda C, Komatsu K.
Research Center for Ethnomedicines, Institute of Natural Medicine, Toyama Medical and Pharmaceutical University, 2630 Sugitani, Toyama 930-0194, Japan.
We investigated whether withanolide A (WL-A), isolated from the Indian herbal drug Ashwagandha (root of Withania somnifera), could regenerate neurites and reconstruct synapses in severely damaged neurons. We also investigated the effect of WL-A on memory-deficient mice showing neuronal atrophy and synaptic loss in the brain. Axons, dendrites, presynapses, and postsynapses were visualized by immunostaining for phosphorylated neurofilament-H (NF-H), microtubule-associated protein 2 (MAP2), synaptophysin, and postsynaptic density-95 (PSD-95), respectively. Treatment with A beta(25-35) (10 microM) induced axonal and dendritic atrophy, and pre- and postsynaptic loss in cultured rat cortical neurons. Subsequent treatment with WL-A (1 microM) induced significant regeneration of both axons and dendrites, in addition to the reconstruction of pre- and postsynapses in the neurons. WL-A (10 micromol kg(-1) day(-1), for 13 days, p.o.) recovered A beta(25-35)-induced memory deficit in mice. At that time, the decline of axons, dendrites, and synapses in the cerebral cortex and hippocampus was almost recovered. WL-A is therefore an important candidate for the therapeutic treatment of neurodegenerative diseases, as it is able to reconstruct neuronal networks.
PMID: 15711595 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
Last in the series of Charlie Brooker's dark dramas. In the near future, everyone has access to a memory implant that records everything they do, see and hear - a sort of Sky Plus for the brain. You need never forget a face again... but is that always a good thing?
there was a story called...'Flowers for Algernon' by the Sci-Fi writer Heinlein