AANS Neurosurgeon | Volume 26, Number 4, 2017

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How SORLA Protects Against Alzheimer’s Disease

Study findings could lead to new therapeutic approaches to slow brain degeneration

Researchers at Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute (SBP) have identified a new protective function for a brain protein genetically linked to Alzheimer’s. The findings could inform novel treatment strategies.

“We found that a protein called SORLA directly limits the ability of amyloid beta, the toxic protein that causes Alzheimer’s, to trigger the destruction of neuronal connections,” says Huaxi Xu, Ph.D., professor and the Jeanne and Gary Herberger Leadership Chair of SBP’s Neuroscience and Aging Research Center. (SORLA stands for sortilin-related receptor with LDLR class A repeats.) “This is actually the third way that SORLA has been shown to defend against neurodegeneration.”

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