Published: 9:21 am PST Jul 22, 2016 | Updated: 9:47 am PST Oct 7, 2020
In 2060, projections forecast the number of people with Alzheimer’s disease in the US will grow to 13.9 million people, which more than doubles the number in 2018, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Although the world is growing older and the population of Alzheimer’s disease patients is increasing, currently, there is no cure for the illness. A group of scientists from China and Japan wanted to change that.
After treating the rats with NMN, the team also found a significantly reduced neuronal death in the animals with Alzheimer’s. Following 48 hours of incubation, the diseased rats with NMN treatment showed about a 65% reduction in cell death compared to the animals with Alzheimer’s without NMN treatment.
Besides finding cognitive improvement and a decrease in neuronal death, the researchers also discovered lower levels of cellular stress in the NMN treated Alzheimer’s rat model, indicating NMN’s effects on nervous system protection. However, the protection is reversed when NMN-derived NAD+ are inactivated, confirming the role of brain energy metabolism in Alzheimer’s disease.
(Wang et al., 2016 | Brain Research) Effect of NMN on Aβ1–42 oligomer-induced neuronal death in cultures of brain slices. After 10 days in culture, brain slices were incubated in experimental mediums. After 6 h and 48 h, neuronal death was evaluated by propidium iodide (PI) staining. Incubation with 10 μM Aβ1–42 oligomer for 6 h did not cause neuron death in each treatment. Incubation with 10 μM Aβ1–42 oligomer for 48 h increased the neuron death and NMN decreased the Aβ1–42 oligomer induced neuron death. The presence of 3-AP reversed the protective effect of NMN and showed an increased level of neuron death.
This study from 2015 highlighted the potential for NMN as a therapeutic agent in Alzheimer’s disease. “Our study provides a novel aspect of a potential application of NMN in [Alzheimer’s disease] treatment,” stated the scientists in their study.
Xiaonan Wang, Wuejun Hu, Yang Yang, Toshihiro Takata, Takashi Sakurai. Nicotinamide mononucleotide protects against ß-amyloid oligomer-induced cognitive impairment and neuronal death. Brain Res, 2016; DOI: 10.1016/j.brainres.2016.04.060.