Research suggests that the liver might play a large role in the development of Alzheimer's disease. Trials on mice found that the amount of amyloid that builds up in the brain during the development of Alzheimer's can be influenced by three genes. The lower the expression of these three genes in the liver, the less the amount of amyloid plaque that builds up in the brain, leading researchers to believe that the liver plays a much larger role in the development of Alzheimer's than previously suspected.
More facts about Alzheimer's disease:
- About half of people 85 and older in the United States have Alzheimer's disease, and by 2050, it's estimated that about 16 million people older than 65 will have the condition.
- Caring for those with Alzheimer's is extremely costly — it's estimated that more than $20 trillion US Dollars will be spent between 2010 and 2050 on caring for people who have Alzheimer's.
- Alzheimer's as a cause of death went up 60 percent between 2000 and 2010, while other common causes of death, including the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), stroke and heart disease all dropped by at least 10 percent.