Do Tau Deposits Affect Blood Oxygen Supply to the Brain?
Tau is an important protein in Alzheimer's disease. It can undergo changes that lead it to clump together inside nerve cells, inhibiting their function. In this innovative study, Sung Ji Ahn, PhD, and her colleagues plan to assess whether these clumps also interfere with blood flow in the brain, depriving cells of the oxygen and nutrients they need to function.
Using a lab model of Alzheimer's disease, the researchers will first apply cutting-edge brain imaging to follow the behavior and function of cells in the brain. They expect to determine whether the spread of tau tangling through brain cells and blood vessel dysfunction are related.
With this information, they next will examine whether oxygen treatments change these patterns for the better. Improvements could signal an opening to related therapies that counteract brain dysfunction related to tau accumulation.