A Viral Cause for Alzheimer's?

This release via EurekAlert! is very compelling - but how does it fit in with the good evidence that Alzheimer's is a form of diabetes? "The virus behind cold sores is a major cause of the insoluble protein plaques found in the brains of Alzheimer's disease [AD] sufferers ... [researchers] investigated the role of herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV1) in AD ... Most people are infected with this virus, which then remains life-long in the peripheral nervous system ... HSV1 DNA is located very specifically in amyloid plaques: 90% of plaques in Alzheimer's disease sufferers' brains contain HSV1 DNA, and most of the viral DNA is located within amyloid plaques. The team had previously shown that HSV1 infection of nerve-type cells induces deposition of the main component, beta amyloid, of amyloid plaques. Together, these findings strongly implicate HSV1 as a major factor in the formation of amyloid deposits and plaques, abnormalities thought by many in the field to be major contributors to Alzheimer's disease."

Link: http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/12/081207134109.htm

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