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Gene Linked to Alzheimer's Disease Plays Key Role in Cell Survival – 1

Narrator: This is NIH Health Matters. I’m Joe Balintfy. For more than a decade, researchers have known that genes called presenilin [pre-sin-NIHL-lin] 1 and 2 play an important role in the development of early-onset Alzheimer’s disease. Now a new study shows presenilin works as a type of housekeeping mechanism—removing unwanted and potentially toxic proteins.

Refolo: Nobody had any clue that this was a function of the presenilin.

Narrator: Dr. Lorenzo Refolo is at the National Institute on Aging.

Refolo: One of it’s normal roles is creating the right kind of environment within the system to start degrading proteins—both normal proteins and toxic proteins.

Narrator: For more information on this discovery visit www.nia.nih.gov. Health Matters is produced by the National Institutes of Health, part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

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This page last reviewed on March 16, 2011

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