Sam Bauman: New way to treat symptoms of Alzheimer’s? |

Sam Bauman: New way to treat symptoms of Alzheimer’s?

Sam Bauman

Another small advance on the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease. Seems we get this kind of lab success regularly, but when will it become really clear good news? Here’s a report on using ultrasound to clean up the tangle of plaques found in Alzheimer’s patients — just don’t get too excited about it:

A new way of treating some of the symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease may be on the horizon—using ultrasound. This from the Internet.

New research has yielded some news from Reuters out of Queensland, Brisbane:

“While the approach has only been tested in mice, researchers said on Wednesday it proved surprisingly good at clearing tangles of plaques linked to Alzheimer’s in the animals’ brains and improving their memory, as measured by tests such as navigating a maze.

In the past, ultrasound has been combined with injected microbubbles, which vibrate in response to sound waves, to get drugs across the so-called blood brain barrier.”

Gerhard Leinega, who has worked on this study for 3 years notes: “Definitely, if we can improve the functioning in daily life and delay the progression of the disease, then it will have a huge benefit not just to the patients but to their families and carers,” he told Reuters.

In Alzheimer’s sufferers, a plaque of the toxic protein amyloid beta builds up within the blood-brain barrier.

This is a small glimmer of hope in alleviating some of the terrible symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease, Reuters wrote. “It’s important to point out that this potential treatment doesn’t treat the underlying disease. Also mice brains are nowhere near as complex as the human brain and human trials won’t happen for at least a couple of years.”

TV target sites for seniors

After more than 50 years in the news business, I figure I know my way around news sources. Last weekend while visiting old friends in the Bay Area I was surprised when my pal Jerry turned on the TV and said, ‘Let’s see what the Chinese are talking about these days,” clicked a few times.

And on the TV appeared a Western-attired man speaking in English about political moves in the Chinese government. Nothing very shocking, but it was just like talking heads programming. An elaborate set, good decor and a Chinese network.

Yes, it is not just a website; it was a complete network set up with several programs mostly in English. It was all sort of surreal with all the usual technical support.

What’s this, I asked Jerry.

China’s answer to Voice of America, but all very professional, was the reply. And yes, there it was, network “CC,” it’s call sign.

That’s not all. Jerry clicked again and network “RT” came up. A new studio scene with a Western-clad man reading the news in English. The set wasn’t nearly as plush and the Chinese one, but the sound was good. The message was all about Russian oil sales without too much propaganda.

Two complete networks, state-sponsored right out there. Much bigger effort than what the United States is doing.

Further checking showed Al Jazeera broadcasting in English for Americans, with cable-system DISH offering hundreds of Arab programs.

Guess I gotta upgrade my AT&T account. But I also found out that I could scan my current program and get a lot of Arabic programming. An invite for seniors to enlarge their TV horizons.

Snow sports season ending soon

One look at Slide Mountain and you can see the snow level creeping up the slide. It’s no even April and snow is getting thin. So if you’re about ready put the skis in the garage, remember to note the bindings setting number before you loosen them. If you’re up to it remove the season’s wax and add a new coat. Check for base damage and repair if you can.

This has not been a good ski season for me. Back problems and a month-long cold combined to hold me back. But come birthday time, I’ll get one last run in.

Vail reported that business was good at its 10 resorts but off here at Tahoe. Big upgrades coming to Heavenly, the report noted and profits were good.

“Big Mac” progress report

The big machines have been busy over the last week as work continues on the area next to the Boys and Girls Clubs of Western Nevada, over on Russell Way.

A big hole has been dug close to the Club building all the sagebrush is gone, dozens of trucks taking it away. Most of the surface has been leveled and smoothed and there’s a small mountain of dirt piled up at the west end of the area,

Happily, the kids still are playing on the grass area. They don’t seem to care about what’s happening at their Club. Work starts early, around 7 a.m., and goes on all day until 4 p.m. or so.

Sam Bauman writes about senior issues for the Nevada Appeal.