New Super Microscope Shows Alzheimer’s In Brain Detail

A super microscope developed by researchers at Purdue University can now show you high resolution molecular details of Alzheimer’s disease.

 

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For years scientists have unsuccessfully searched for ways to track the amyloid plaques, the best known marker of Alzheimer’s.

Amyloid plaques are one of the two brain abnormalities that define Alzheimer’s disease. The other hallmark is neurofibrillary tangles. Technically, an individual may display all the behavioral and cognitive symptoms of Alzheimer’s, but if there are no plaques and tangles, there is no diagnosis of Alzheimer’s. Most important, amyloid plaques in the brain can form years before the behavioral symptoms are noticed. By that time, it’s usually too late to reverse the disease.

 

 

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Super microscope close up of Alzheimer’s amyloid plaques. Courtesy Indiana University.

 

 

 

With the super microscope, researchers were able to obtain three-dimensional images of molecules within the brain at a resolution that was previously an impossibility. It shows how the plaques assemble and expand during the disease process. It also shows the biological causes of the disease which may help scientists find a way to prevent these plaques and tangles from forming.

Watch this amazing video of the super telescope in action:

 

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