A substance from hibiscus could alleviate Alzheimer’s disease

By studying immune cells in the brain (microglia), the research team found that gossypetin inhibits the activity of genes that promote chronic inflammatory responses. It also supports the ability of cells to remove waste products from their environment.

In experiments with mice suffering from Alzheimer’s disease, gossypetin was able to stimulate these cells to break down the lumpy structures in the brain that are typical of Alzheimer’s. This improved the animals’ mental performance, the researchers report in the journal “Alzheimer’s Research & Therapy”: Treatment with gossypetin for three months made the mice’s memory so busy that it almost returned to normal. At the same time, beta-amyloid deposits were significantly reduced. Based on their results, the researchers hope that gossypetin from hibiscus will contribute to the development of a safe and affordable drug for people with Alzheimer’s disease.

In Alzheimer’s disease, beta-amyloid and tau proteins are deposited in brain tissue. Microglia capture these clumps to protect the brain. However, if this happens in large amounts all the time, the cells will eventually become exhausted. This leads to a chronic inflammatory response and damage to nerve cells, resulting in mental decline.

What: DOI 10.1186/s13195-022-01096-3

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