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Home > Research Articles > Infection linked to Alzheimer's disease


Saturday, October 12, 2002

Susan Aldridge, PhD

A new study suggests a link between a common bacterium and the brain deposits that are the hallmark of Alzheimer's disease.

Researchers from Philadelphia have previously revealed the presence of a common bacterium within the brains of 90 per cent of a group of Alzheimer's patients, post-mortem. The bacterium is Chlamydia pneumoniae , which normally causes lung infections - although it has also been linked to heart disease. The team found the infection within the brain deposits known as plaque, which are the hallmark of Alzheimer's disease.

In a new study, they have found that mice exposed to a nasal spray of the bacteria develop progressive plaques in their brain. It may be that this infection acts as a trigger for Alzheimer's disease, say the researchers.

Source International Conference on Alzheimer's disease and related disorders 8th October 2002