The Relationship Between Beta-Amyloid and Tau and Their Relation to Alzheimer’s Disease

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The Relationship Between Beta-Amyloid and Tau and Their Reease affects over 40 million people in the world. It is a costly disease that robs the afflicted person of their mental capacity over a period of five to twenty years. In the United States alone, there are five and a half million people that have the disease (Alzheimer’s Association).

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Alzheimer’s Disease is also the only disease in the top ten leading causes of death in people over the age of 65 that cannot be cured, prevented, or slowed. What are researchers doing to try to prevent this disease? Researchers are currently taking steps by trying to figure out how beta-amyloid and tau relate to each other and how these two proteins play a role in Alzheimer’s Disease.

Millions upon millions of dollars of research and hours have been spent in researching how to prevent this disease. Alzheimer’s Disease is currently the only disease in the top leading causes of death of people above the age of 65 that cannot currently be prevented, slowed, or cured. This presents a great challenge to researchers that want to help people afflicted with Alzheimer’s Disease and other types of mental degenerative diseases. To do that researchers must find out what causes Alzheimer’s Disease and what it is characterized by.

Alzheimer’s Disease is currently a Subtype of Dementia. To understand it better, researchers must be able to understand what dementia is and the different stages that are included throughout the progression of the disease. Dementia is characterized by the continued loss of memory and mental function until the afflicted can no longer perform household tasks such as bathing and going to the bathroom. According to the Mayo Clinic, there are five different stages of Alzheimer’s Disease and these include: Preclinical Alzheimer’s Disease, MCI (Mild Cognitive Impairment), Mild Dementia, Moderate Dementia, and Severe Dementia (Mayo Clinic).

Preclinical Alzheimer’s Disease is the first stage in this disease. Preclinical Alzheimer’s Disease takes place years before any noticeable symptoms can be observed. There are many changes going on in the brain during this period. There are noticeable signs in the brain’s structure but a person does not show a cognitive decline. The people around someone with Preclinical Alzheimer’s Disease will not be able to notice anything different about the person that has it. Neither will the person afflicted. This stage is often the longest stage of the disease because the onset is very gradual and can take decades to progress to the next stage of the disease. This stage also goes undetected because you would need to have tests that show the brain with a baseline and follow up tests for comparison.

The second stage of Alzheimer’s Disease is Mild Cognitive impairment or MCI.

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