Scientists have discovered a way to halt neurodegeneration in mice affected by prion diseases: by rebooting their dying brain cells.
"We think it worked because we hit the executioner of the cells," says Mallucci. One challenge now, she says, is to find drugs that reboot normal protein production in the same way. A second challenge is to see if the same "production line closures" are what kill cells in patients with Alzheimer's and other dementias. If they are, then finding a drug to halt them might work in several diseases.