BrainStorm Live Episode 3: How Does Amprion Enable Early Detection Of Neurodegenerative Diseases?
Amprion’s CEO Dr. Russ Lebovitz talks about the earliest molecular changes and biomarkers for Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. These changes involve the formation of small soluble aggregates of misfolded proteins within the brain. Known as Prions, these soluble aggregates can replicate slowly within the brain by causing other normal proteins to misfold, forming new Prions. They can also move from cell to cell. These Prions have long incubation period, and are highly destructive of neurons.
Prion’s mobile, silent and deadly characteristics are what made them extremely challenging for early detection of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s using existing techniques, until Amprion. The company’s groundbreaking Prion Early Detection Testing℠ tracks these Prions at very low concentrations. Our detection science targets the small number of Prions while the overall numbers are still very small, and before irreversible damage and death of nerve cells have occurred. Early detection of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s enables the acceleration of successful drug development to treat these elusive neurodegenerative diseases.
Biomarkers For Alzheimer’s & Parkinson’s
Clearly we have data that we can detect years ahead and we suspect that we can detect even decades ahead. And the reason for that is just again to recap that the major neurodegenerative diseases seem to be initiated by misfolding of normal brain proteins into unusual aggregated structures meaning they stick together.
When misfolding begins to appear one can first form small soluble aggregates that are invisible under the microscope, invisible to imaging technologies but these are the earliest forms of the disease that lead to spreading from a single cell to multiple cells. Once these are formed, the disease has begun. Since these are invisible to all existing technologies except Amprion’s technology, Amprion’s ability to detect the small soluble aggregates soon after they begin to form and spread is the hallmark of early detection and it is necessary for early detection.
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