Alzheimer's Disease Case Study

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Ronald Reagan was diagnosed with Alzheimer 's disease in 1994, which was after his presidential term. Alzheimer 's disease (AD) is an incurable and debilitating chronic progressive neurodegenerative disorder which is the leading cause of dementia worldwide (Kazim and Iqbal, 2016). Many of Reagan’s speech characteristics changed and can be associated with the neurological structures such as the myelination of the neurons as well as specific genes and the thickness of the surrounding cells of the neuron.

A Study done on molecular neurodegeneration states, “Finally, we document that the loss of BIN1 significantly correlates with the extent of demyelination in multiple sclerosis lesions” (De Rossi et al, 2016). The study provides information
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They write, “Synaptic loss is a better correlate of cognitive impairment in AD than Aβ or tau pathologies. Thus a highly promising therapeutic strategy for AD is to shift the balance from neurodegeneration to neurodegeneration and synaptic repair” (Kazim and Iqbal, 2016). This study goes into detail about the peptides and proteins that are present in the neuron and how the impairment of these Aβ or tau pathologies have a correlation with the synaptic loss. If there are factors such as this that affect the synapses it is possible that the neurons are not properly communicating with each other. If this is happening in the neurons of those who have Alzheimer 's, then this means that their neurons are not communicating properly. This can affect the motor dexterity performance of those who have …show more content…
Some of the major pharmaceuticals that are used today include donepezil, galantamine, memantine and rivastigmine. Of these, galantamine is one of the most commonly prescribed and used. Research published in Psychopharmacology examined the effects that galantamine had on patients with Alzheimer 's disease and concluded that people treated with galantamine have improved cognitive function ( Ellis et al, 2009). This is because galantamine enhances cholinergic function by restricting acetylcholine-degrading enzyme, AChE, and the binding sites of nAChRs. There was a 27% increase in verbal learning and language in some patients with this treatment. However, galantamine failed to enhance other cognitive functions such as attention, orientation, and short-term recall. This may be a result of galantamines poor ability to regulate α4 β2 receptors.

Another pharmacological treatment used is donepezil and ginkgo Biloba extract EGb 761®. A double-blind exploratory trial was conducted by Hoerr R., and others to examine the cognitive effects of the ginkgo Biloba extract EGb 761® and donepezil drugs combined in patients diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease. The researchers stated that cholinesterase inhibitors like donepezil and EGb 761® have shown to be effective treatments and improve symptoms associated with Alzheimer 's disease (Hoerr R. et al, 2009). Still, more research is needed to see how it specifically

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