Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Vitamin B12 link to Alzheimer's backed by study

Vitamin B capsuleEvidence is mounting that levels of vitamin B12 may be connected to the risk of developing Alzheimer's disease.

A study of 271 Finns found those with the highest levels were the least likely to be diagnosed with dementia.

However, an Alzheimer's charity said despite the findings, published in the journal Neurology, it was "too early" to think about taking supplements.

It called for more research into the protective power of vitamins such as B12 - found in meat, fish and eggs.

Vitamin B12 can also be found in milk and some fortified cereals.

Alzheimer's has been linked to B vitamins for some years, and scientists know that higher levels of a body chemical called homocysteine can raise the risk of both strokes and dementia.

Homocysteine levels can be lowered by increasing the amount of vitamin B12 in the blood.

A recent trial found that "brain shrinkage", which has been associated with Alzheimer's, was slowed in older people taking high doses of vitamins, including B12.

The volunteers for the latest study, carried out by scientists from the Karolinska Institute in Sweden, were all aged 65 to 79, and did not have dementia at the start of the study. ...

A treatment to lower levels of a protein called "STEP" in mice bred to develop a condition similar to Alzheimer's disease appeared to reverse some of their memory and learning problems. ...

via BBC News - Vitamin B12 link to Alzheimer's backed by study.

No comments: