Alzheimer's Disease Essay

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Bryan Willey Alzheimer’s disease Alzheimer’s is a progressive, degenerative disease of the brain and individuals with the disease suffer from many symptoms such as memory loss, agitation, impaired judgment, and difficulty communicating with others. The different lobes affected include the parietal lobe which deals with language, temporal lobe which deals with memory and frontal lobe which deals with behavior and judgment. The specific type of memory loss that an Alzheimer’s patient deals with is declarative memory. Declarative memory is remembrance of facts such as people’s names, what their faces look like and important dates from our past (Marieb and Hoehn 2013). The formation of these memories can only happen when the temporal lobe or more specifically the hippocampus are able to receive acetylcholine inputs. Patients with Alzheimer’s loose this input which prevents making new memories and remembering old ones (Marieb and Hoehn 2013). There are three different abnormalities that can make up Alzheimer’s disease. The first abnormality is beta-amyloid peptide cut from APP, a membrane precursor protein (Marieb and Hoehn 2013). Too much beta-amyloid is toxic and causes plaque buildup between neurons that reduces levels of acetylcholine which makes is difficult to retrieve old memories and make new ones (Marieb and Hoehn 2013). Another abnormality of Alzheimer’s disease is the presence of neurofibrillary tangles inside the neuron. These tangles consist of tau, a protein that leaves its stabilizing role and binds to another tau molecule forming a neurofibrillary tangle. (Marieb and Hoehn 2013). Neurofibrillary tangles then kill the neuron. The final abnormality of Alzheimer’s disease is brain shrinkage. The brain shrink... ... middle of paper ... ... conclude that Alzheimer’s disease is becoming more common and the facts back that up. Just in a span of fourteen years the annual deaths related to Alzheimer’s has become twenty-five times greater. Both by external sources demonstrate that Alzheimer’s has been a problem for a while and will continue to increase if we do not find more efficient treatment methods in the near future. Works Cited Marieb, E.N., Hoehn, K. 2013. Human Anatomy and Physiology. 9th edition. Pearson Education Inc. ISPN-13: 978-0-321-74326-8. The Editorial Board. High Mortality from Alzheimer’s in 2014. The Opinion Pages. Available from: Hoyert, DL., Rosenberg, HM. Mortality from Alzheimer's disease: an update in 1999. Available from:
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