Attacking Alzheimer's with DNA - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

10/26/04

Attacking Alzheimer's with DNA

Four and a half million Americans suffer from Alzheimer's Disease, and the problem is expected to get worse as the population ages. Now, a potential breakthrough. For the first time ever, surgeons are injecting a gene therapy directly into the brain cells of Alzheimer's patients.

"What we have to do is place a needle deep into the brain right almost down to the base of the brain in order to do our injections," says Dr. Roy Bakay, a Neurosurgeon.

Neurosurgeons use MRI scans to locate the damaged brain cells, then injects them with a strand of human DNA designed to restore those cells to health.

Some patients like Ron Shellady, say they already see a difference. "I used to lay something down there, walk away, and 'Where in the hell did I put that?' And now I can pick it up in the same spot. I guess that's the best way I can tell you."

This is still experimental research at Rush University Medical Center in Chicago. But if you'd like to read more about this new gene therapy just (click here).

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