Health & Wellness

This Protein May Boost Memory And Learning

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Protein may boost brain and learningA recent study indicates that increasing a certain type of protein can help improve learning and memory. A research team from Scripps Research Institute (TSRI), the Veterans Affairs San Diego Healthcare System (VA), and University of California (UC) San Diego School of Medicine reported that increasing this protein may offer a “new strategy” for treating neurodegenerative diseases.

Increasing this crucial cholesterol-binding membrane protein, known as caveolin-1 or simply CAV1, in nerve cells within the brain was found to improve learning and memory in older mice. In this day and age where cholesterol is almost a dirty word, this may be surprising. Cholesterol has been so demonized that we many of us don’t even know that we actually need it.

Researchers delivered CAV1 into the hippocampus region of the brain, which is involved in the storage of long-term memory. The mice displayed improved neuron growth and cell signaling. The mice also demonstrated improved retrieval of contextual memories.

The researchers are now testing the protein for possible benefits for treatment of Alzheimer’s disease, spinal cord injuries, and traumatic brain injury.

It is not all that surprising that a certain type of protein has been found to potentially improve brain function. Some amino acids including acyteyl l-carnitine and n-acetyl tyrosine have been used as brain and memory foods and supplements.

You can read a more detailed post on this at the Patch.com website.

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