What is it about?

In recent years, genetic studies have succeeded to identify tens of susceptibility genes for Alzheimer's disease. However, it is not known how such genes increase the risk of the disease in people. We have identified a lipid molecule, LactosylCeramide, which is affected by an Alzheimer's disease susceptibility gene, ABCA7, and changes the risk of Alzheimer's disease.

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Why is it important?

Alzheimer's disease is increasing in numbers due to the ageing population. However, currently, there's limited understanding of how the disease starts and develops in the brain. Moreover, there are very limited options to prevent or treat Alzheimer's disease. Our research outlines why changes in the ABCA7 gene lead to an increased risk of Alzheimer's disease. Moreover, it highlights ceramide, a special kind of lipid that plays role in normal cellular function, to be involved in developing Alzheimer's disease.


Our study has highlighted a molecule and pathway that once further studied, could potentially have diagnostic and therapeutic value for the prevention and treatment of Alzheimer's disease.

Abbas Dehghan
Imperial College London

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: Metabolome-wide association study on ABCA7 indicates a role of ceramide metabolism in Alzheimer’s disease, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, October 2022, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, DOI: 10.1073/pnas.2206083119.
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