Researchers are on the verge of developing a new method for the diagnosis of dementia
Specialists from the University of Iowa have found a new potential biomarker of dementia - autotaxin. Previous studies have shown that people with obesity have increased autotaxin levels in the brain. This provokes the development of insulin resistance and increases the risk of diabetes type 2, The Daily Mail said.
The scientists have analyzed data of 287 people aged 56 to 89 years. The volunteers carried out the tests designed to evaluate cognitive abilities. The scientists have also evaluated autotaxin levels in the brains of the participants. The researchers have revealed that when autotaxin concentrations were increased by only 1 point (2 to 3) the risk of memory loss was increased by 5 times.
People with high levels of autotaxin had a fewer amount of cells in the frontal and temporal lobes of the brain associated with memory and executive functions. Moreover, these cells were small. The probability of diabetes depended on autotaxin levels even more. Thus, the increase of autotaxin levels in the cerebrospinal fluid even by 1 point led to the increase of risk of diabetes type 2 or prediabetes by 300%. Probably the brain consumes less sugar due to diabetes. As a result of this neurons process information less efficiently.