Study Finds Seeds of Alzheimer’s May Have Spread in Medical Procedure
British scientists have found evidence that the biological seeds of Alzheimer’s disease could be passed on through medical procedures — though specialists said the risk of transmission was largely theoretical. Research published on Wednesday found evidence that suggested one of the hallmark proteins of Alzheimer’s — that could go on to develop into the brain disease — spread to a group of patients via a now banned form of hormone treatment. The growth treatment, using human-derived hormones, is no longer used due to the risk of contamination. But studies are now needed into whether other procedures, such as blood transfusions and the repeated use of surgical instruments, pose a risk. “We do need to ask that question,” he said, noting that previous experiments on laboratory mice and monkeys have already shown that transmission of the Alzheimer’s protein is theoretically possible. “There is evidence from animal studies that it is not implausible.” Experts asked to comment on Collinge’s work said it was scientifically intriguing, but should not cause undue concern.
David Wingate is an elder law attorney at the Elder Law Office of David Wingate, LLC. The elder law office services clients with powers of attorneys, living wills, Wills, Trusts, Medicaid and asset protection. The Elder Law office has locations in Frederick and Montgomery Counties, Maryland.