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article imageCan cinnamon prevent Alzheimer's?

By Tim Sandle     May 26, 2013 in Science
Some recent research suggests that an extract from cinnamon could help to prevent or delay the onset of Alzheimer's disease.
Alzheimer's disease is the most common form of dementia. There is currently no cure for the disease and the illness worsens as it progresses, and eventually leads to death.
However, some progress could be being made. Two scientists, Roshni George and Donald Graves, have published a paper titled "Interaction of Cinnamaldehyde and Epicatechin with Tau: Implications of Beneficial Effects in Modulating Alzheimer's Disease Pathogenesis," in the Journal of Alzheimer's Disease.
The paper, as summarized in a research note, examines two compounds found in cinnamon: cinnamaldehyde and epicatechin. Based on experiments, these two compounds have been shown to prevent the development of the filamentous "tangles" found in the brain cells that characterize Alzheimer's. This means that the compounds prevent the breakdown of certain proteins, seen critical to the onset of the disease.
The research does not, at this stage, mean that consuming cinnamon will prevent or cure Alzheimer's disease; the effects have only been noted in test tube models. However, the findings do suggest a possible avenue for further research.
The research was undertaken at UC Santa Barbara.
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