STOCK MARKET BSE NSE

Scientists find way to trigger memory

Published: 12th June 2013 10:00 AM  |   Last Updated: 12th June 2013 10:00 AM   |  A+A-

What happens when we forget? In diseases like Alzheimer’s, remembering basic details about who we are, where our home is and whether the man standing close by is the husband become arduous tasks that cannot be fathomed. But, what if we had a pill to help us remember? The research of a couple of scientists in the city may make this a reality.

Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar Awardee Professor Tapas Kundu and Prof M Eswaramoorthy, along with their research groups at Jawaharlal Nehru Centre for Advanced Scientific Research, Bangalore, have figured out a way to activate an enzyme that enhance memory.

Kundu designed a molecule 10 years ago that will kick into action chemicals in the brain that are necessary for enhancing memory. But now, Eswaramoorthy’s group has figured a way to deliver this molecule to the brain by tagging it to a nano particle, one-thousandth the width of a human hair, of glucose-based carbon.

“We have found that the molecule supports neurogenesis—the growth of new cells in the brain. We are confident that these molecules can be used in the therapy of neurodegenerative diseases,” Kundu said.

Eswaramoorthy and his group facilitated this with the nano particle, which was seen to cross the blood-brain barrier. By attaching the activator molecule to it, the researchers managed to effectively reach the brain of mice and activate the acetyltransferase enzymes there.

Kundu, who won this year’s Ranbaxy Award for Biomedical Research in Basic Science, told Express: “We have two further collaborations. One is with a group of scientists in France where we will work on Alzheimer’s models in mice and see if we can help them with this molecule. The second is with scientists in AIIMS, New Delhi,  and the Central Government’s Department of Biotechnology, in which we plan to evaluate the molecule’s toxicity.”

Kundu is a bit worried about using the glucose-based particle to send the activator molecule to the brain as it can be broken down in the body quite easily. Sorting this issue could be crucial for human trials.

Kundu has collaborated with Dr Anne Laurette Boutillier’s group in Strasbourg, France for furthering this study. They have also shown through experiments with mice that the activator molecule increases enzyme activity in the brain that helps enhance memory.

Stay up to date on all the latest Bengaluru news with The New Indian Express App. Download now
(Get the news that matters from New Indian Express on WhatsApp. Click this link and hit 'Click to Subscribe'. Follow the instructions after that.)

Comments

Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the newindianexpress.com editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on newindianexpress.com are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of newindianexpress.com or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. newindianexpress.com reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp