Nutrition Shows Promise as Alzheimer’s is Linked to Oxidative Stress
Recently, researchers from the Beijing Hospital of Traditional Chinese Medicine and the Capital Medical University in China analyzed urinary biomarkers of oxidative stress among 46 patients with vascular dementia, 24 patients with vascular disease without dementia, and 26 people without symptoms of either.
They found that patients with dementia had significantly higher levels of a urinary biomarker called 8-hydroxydeoxyguanosine (or 8-OHdG). 8-OHdG is associated with significantly high levels of oxidative stress. These levels were significantly higher than both of the other groups of patients.
Another recent study, this one from Qingdao University’s School of Medicine, analyzed multiple studies and two large genome studies and concluded that Alzheimer’s disease patients have significantly higher levels of clusterin, also known as apolipoprotein J. Clusterin has been found to bind to amyloid-beta (Abeta) proteins, and has the ability to reduce fibril formation.
It is now thought that in an attempt to resist the formation of the Abeta proteins and fibrils, the body produces clusterin as a defense measure against oxidative stress. This has been confirmed in studies showing that clusterin lowers cell death and levels of oxidative stress.
Oxidative stress is produced with increased levels of toxin exposure, either within the diet, water or air, combined with lower levels of antioxidants and increased levels of lifestyle stressors. Toxins become oxidized and become radicals, which can damage our arteries and tissues.
Researchers from Columbia’s University of Pontificia Javeriana studied the connection between antioxidant intake and Alzheimer’s disease in a variety of studies. They found that an increased consumption of “polyphenol-rich” foods significantly lowered the risk of Alzheimer’s disease. Plant-based foods provide polyphenols.
The researchers confirmed their findings. “It has been demonstrated, in various cell culture and animal models, that these [polyphenol] metabolites are able to protect neuronal cells by attenuating oxidative stress and damage.”
Shi GX, Liu CZ, Wang LP, Guan LP, Li SQ. Biomarkers of oxidative stress in vascular dementia patients. Can J Neurol Sci. 2012 Jan;39(1):65-8.
Wu ZC, Yu JT, Li Y, Tan L. Clusterin in Alzheimer’s disease. Adv Clin Chem. 2012;56:155-73.
Perry G, Phelix CF, Nunomura A, Colom LV, Castellani RJ, Petersen RB, Lee HG, Zhu X. Untangling the vascular web from Alzheimer disease and oxidative stress. Can J Neurol Sci. 2012 Jan;39(1):4.
Albarracin SL, Stab B, Casas Z, Sutachan JJ, Samudio I, Gonzalez J, Gonzalo L, Capani F, Morales L, Barreto GE. Effects of natural antioxidants in neurodegenerative disease. Nutr Neurosci. 2012 Jan;15(1):1-9.