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Aluminum & Alzheimer's Disease

Ian Goddard igoddard at erols.mom
Thu Apr 24 23:30:51 EST 2003

>Hi Ian
>  I think that aluminum as an etiological factor in AD has been
>discounted. One school of thought in the 80's and 90's believed that
>to be the causitive factor, but I think further research discredited
>that notion.

  IAN: I've also heard that. However, while aluminum (Al) 
  exposure may not *cause* Alzheimer's disease (AD), Al 
  might exacerbate AD. Here's some recent research:

Neurotoxicology 2002: "CONCLUSIONS: These findings suggest a role of
aluminium in early neurotoxic effects [of AD] ... The authors raise
the question whether pre-clinical detection of aluminium neurotoxicity
and consequent early treatment might help to prevent or retard the
onset of AD or AD-like pathologies." 

Age Ageing 1999: "CONCLUSION: past consumption of foods containing
large amounts of aluminium additives differed between people with
Alzheimer's disease and controls, suggesting that dietary intake of
aluminium may affect the risk of developing this disease." 

J Alzheimers Dis 2002: "Aluminum may cause neurological damage and a
number of studies have linked aluminum to an increased risk for
developing AD ... Diet, aluminum, and viral infections may increase
the prevalence of AD by eliciting inflammation, which may cause the
neurological damage that results in AD." 

Brain Res 2003: "Aluminum (Al(III)) and iron (Fe(III)) are reported to
accumulate in neurofibrillary tangles of the Alzheimer's disease (AD)
brain. ... The efficient Al (III) chelation attainable by Feralex-G
adds weight to its potential clinical usefulness as a medicine in the
aluminum/iron chelation therapy for patients with AD."

Med Hypotheses 2002: "The APO E(4) allele and other genetic
aberrations that promote sporadic Alzheimer's disease do so most
effectively in low alkalinity-high aluminum environments..."

The "Journal of Alzheimer's Disease" (October 2002) published as study
that found a mechanism by which Al may promote AD. The abstract reads:

"The catabolism of amyloid beta peptides (Abeta) may be important in
their accumulation in the brain in both early and late-onset
Alzheimer's disease (AD). The serine protease plasmin is one of a
suite of proteases implicated in AD. It is a promoter of
alpha-cleavage of the amyloid beta precursor protein (AbetaPP) and
will degrade Abeta in vitro. Herein we have demonstrated cleavage of
the amyloidogenic Abeta(25-35) by plasmin to produce the
non-amyloidogenic fragment Abeta(29-35). The activity of plasmin was
halved by pre-mixing it with aluminium (Al) prior to its addition to
the peptide. An interaction between Al and proteases involved in the
catabolism of Abeta might define the putative link between Al and AD."

Rev Environ Health 2002: "We conclude that not enough epidemiological
evidence supports a link between aluminum in drinking water and AD." 

Nephrol Dial Transplant 2002: "Although a direct relationship between
aluminium and AD has not been clearly demonstrated, a detailed
mechanistic basis for the hypothesis that aluminium may exacerbate
events associated with AD is clearly emerging. The results discussed
here have broad implications for the role played by aluminium and
other metals in neurodegenerative diseases, and suggest that long-term
exposure to supra-physiological amounts these metals should be

Int J Occup Med Environ Health 2001: "Elevated aluminum levels in
blood, usually resulting from kidney dialysis at home with well water
containing high aluminum, result in dementia that is similar to but
probably different from that of Alzheimer's disease. However, there is
some epidemiological evidence for elevated risk of Alzheimer's in
areas where there is high concentration of aluminum in drinking

I don't think we can declare that Al plays no role in AD pathology.


  "To lengthen thy life, lessen thy meals." Ben Franklin   

  Ongoing CR monkey study update: "In the monkeys...those on
  reduced feeding since the study started are dying at a rate 
  that is about half that of the monkeys receiving a full food
  ration." Associated Press: Eating less may extend human life.
  August 1, 2002 : http://www.msnbc.com/news/788746.asp?0si=-

  CR vs AD:



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