Sunday, April 14, 2013


Here is a short excerpt from the book, where the author, Dr. Mary T. Newport (whose husband suffers from early-onset AD), finds out about a promising drug trial:


The first item to pop up was a 2008 patent application... on  This was a continuation of a patent application that was originally submitted by Samuel Henderson, Ph.D., executive director of research at Accera, in May 2000.  I printed out the seventy-five-page document and began to read it.  After several pages of legalese, there was a well-written summary of what was known about Alzheimer's Disease at that time in relation to their invention.  It talked about beta-amyloid plaques and neurofibrillary tangles, but also about a problem with glucose transport into neurons.  It said that researchers have discovered that neurons in certain areas of the brain in Alzheimer's Disease are unable to use glucose and that this same problem occurs in other neorodegenerative diseases, including Parkinson's Disease, Huntington's Disease and Lou Gehrig's Disease (Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, or ALS), but in different parts of the brain.

This rang a bell because I had previously come across research about the problem of glucose transport in Alzheimer's patients by William Klein, Ph.D., and others (Klein, 2008).  Researchers described a problem with the location of insulin receptors, which would normally be found on the surface of the cell membranes but are not.  The hormone insulin is needed for glucose to enter cells.  Insulin attaches to the receptor on the cell membrane, initiating a chain of metabolic events that allows glucose into the cell where it is converted eventually into the energy molecule adenosine triphosphate (ATP).  ATP is necessary for the cell to function and maintains its very life.  Some scientists had even begun to call Alzheimer's Disease a "type 3" diabetes (de la Monte, 2005), a concept that will be discussed at length in Chapter 13.

The patent application then described the "invention," which was based on the known fact that neurons can use a type of fuel other than glucose called ketones or ketone bodies.  Ketones are transported into the cell by a different mechanism than glucose and therefore, if available in the bloodstream, can bypass the glucose/insulin transport problem and provide fuel for neurons and other brain cells, potentially keeping them alive.

You can order the book here, or check it out at your local library.

The book I have been quoting from was published in 2011.  The new addition is being released on April 15, 2013.  The first edition of Alzheimer's Disease: What if There Was a Cure?, which details Dr. Newport's discovery and use of medium-chain fatty acids (which act like alternative fuel in the Alzheimer's brain), had such a strong reception in 2011 that a second edition is now in demand. In this updated and expanded version, Dr. Newport, a neonatal practitioner, continues the story of her husband Steve's progress and provides the most recent research on the possible connection between Alzheimer's disease and the herpes simplex virus and nitrosamine substances, as well as how infection, inflammation, and genetic makeup may affect an individual's response to fatty acid therapy. Among many other updates, Dr. Newport details the latest clinical trials aimed at removing beta-amyloid, which accumulates in the Alzheimer's brain.

I pre-ordered the book a few weeks ago and expect to receive it in a few days.  

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