Register for updates

 
 

Medicine & Health
RSS Feed
Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy May Alleviate Symptoms of Alzheimer's Disease
Tuesday, December 05, 2017 9:00:00 AM

Treatment has potential to correct behavioral and physical deficits associated with the disease, TAU researchers say

A new Tel Aviv University study reveals that hyperbaric oxygen treatments may ameliorate symptoms experienced by patients with Alzheimer's disease.

"This revolutionary treatment for Alzheimer's disease uses a hyperbaric oxygen chamber, which has been shown in the past to be extremely effective in treating wounds that were slow to heal," says Prof. Uri Ashery of TAU's Sagol School of Neuroscience and the Faculty of Life Sciences, who led the research for the study. "We have now shown for the first time that hyperbaric oxygen therapy can actually improve the pathology of Alzheimer's disease and correct behavioral deficits associated with the disease.

"This research is extremely exciting as it explores a new therapy that holds promise as a treatment of Alzheimer's disease," Prof. Ashery says.

The research was conducted by PhD student Ronit Shapira of TAU's Faculty of Life Sciences; Prof. Beka Solomon and Dan Frenkel of TAU's Sagol School of Neuroscience and Faculty of Life Sciences; and Prof. Shai Efrati of TAU's Sackler Faculty of Medicine, Sagol School of Neuroscience and Assaf-Harofeh Medical Center. It was published in the journal Neurobiology of Aging.

Patients who undergo hyperbaric oxygen therapy for different conditions breathe in pure oxygen in a pressurized room or chamber. In this chamber, the air pressure is increased to twice that of normal air. Under these conditions, oxygen solubility in the blood increases and is transported by blood vessels throughout the body. The added oxygen stimulates the release of growth factors and stem cells, which themselves promote healing.

The TAU scientists used a mouse model of Alzheimer's disease and built a custom-made hyperbaric oxygen chamber suitable for small animals. Then, over the course of 14 days, the team administered hyperbaric oxygen treatment to the mice for one hour per day. After 14 days, the mice underwent a series of behavioral tests as well as tissue biochemical tests to understand how hyperbaric oxygen treatment affects the pathological hallmarks associated with Alzheimer's disease.

The treatment reduced behavioral deficiencies compared to the non-transgenic control mice, reduced plaque pathology by 40%, and reduced neuroinflammation by about 40%.

"There are serious clinical implications to this research," says Shapira, principal investigator of the study. "Hyperbaric oxygen treatment is a well-tolerated and safe therapy used in clinics around the world for various medical conditions, including neurological disorders. Although further research is needed to elucidate the underlying beneficial mechanisms of the therapy and to evaluate its beneficial effects in various Alzheimer patient populations, it holds great potential for the treatment of Alzheimer's disease."

"In this hallmark study, the beneficial physiological effects of hyperbaric oxygen therapy were directly demonstrated on Alzheimer-affected brain tissue," says Prof. Efrati. "We assume that the main challenge in human use will be to initiate the treatment at early stages before significant amount of brain tissue is lost."

The researchers are currently testing the effectiveness of hyperbaric oxygen treatment on an additional mouse model of Alzheimer's disease to investigate the mechanisms underlying its impact on the disease.




Latest News

The Steinhardt Museum of Natural History at TAU to Open July 2018

New museum displays thousands of items that tell the story of biodiversity in Israel and the Middle East.

Modern Laser Science Brightened by 2,300-Year-Old Technology

Archimedes' screw inspires TAU researchers to devise a novel particle-trapping laser beam.

Neuronal Activity Sheds Light on the Origin of Consciousness

Electrodes in patients with epilepsy register neuronal activity underlying emergence of conscious experience, TAU researchers say.

Philadelphia Orchestra Performs with TAU Students, Israel Philharmonic in Packed Concert

Orchestra's trip to Israel is the third visit to the country by a major U.S. symphony orchestra.

TAU Student Film Wows at Cannes Film Festival

Rubber Dolphin written and directed by Steve Tisch School of Film and Television graduate.

Changes to Specific MicroRNA Involved in Development of Lou Gehrig's Disease

Mechanism involving specific microRNA and muscle molecules plays role in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, TAU researchers say.

Why Diversity Programs Promoting Women and Minorities in Management Fail

Current tools that "force-feed" diversity engender bias and rebellion, TAU and Harvard University researchers say.

Moderate Decline in Violent Attacks Against Jews, But Attacks Are Becoming More Brutal

European Jews harbor increasingly "grave concerns for their security," annual TAU Kantor Center study reports.

TAU Announces Early-Stage Venture Fund to Invest in Student Innovation

TAU Ventures similar to funds at universities such as MIT, UC Berkeley and Stanford.

How Advanced Nanotechnology Can Improve Cancer Care

TAU, Harvard University researchers discuss untapped potential of targeted nanocarriers to revolutionize cancer therapy.

contentSecondary
c

© 2018 American Friends of Tel Aviv University
39 Broadway, Suite 1510 | New York, NY 10006 | 212.742.9070 | info@aftau.org
Privacy policy | Tel Aviv University