Although there have been many efforts to understand the molecular and cellular details of b amyloid production, there is little information on the larger anatomical level. It is unclear how amyloid forms into plaques, how it appears in vessels, and whether cerebral amyloid results in neurodegeneration. Dr. Jucker is using APP transgenic mice to study cerebral amyloidosis and neuron loss. He is transplanting transgenic brain tissue into the brains of normal mice to determine whether amyloid deposits begin at specific anatomical sites such as the synapses, and whether vascular amyloid accumulates only at the site of the graft or throughout the entire brain. These experiments may also help to determine why some brain regions are more likely to develop amyloid deposits, the effect of aging on amyloid deposition, and whether amyloid deposited by the graft may be toxic to host neurons.
First published on: June 10, 2008
Last modified on: June 11, 2008