Hattiesburg, MS (PRWEB) October 23, 2012
Ahmit Kumar, a fifth-year graduate student at The University of Southern Mississippi, has recently been recognized by the Journal of Biological Chemistry for his research on the formation of toxic agents in the brain in relation to the onset of Alzheimer’s disease in a patient. Kumar’s findings were published in a recent issue of the weekly peer-reviewed scientific journal, which reaches a global audience.
Alzheimer’s disease is a progressive brain disorder caused by the formation of large protein deposits that destroy neurons in the brain. Kumar’s research shows not only how these toxic agents form, but how they seem to undergo a snowball effect.
“People are making different theories but they’re still not sure what actually causes Alzheimer’s,” said Kumar, who has been working as part of a research team under Dr. Vijay Rangachari in the university’s biochemical research lab. “Theories about what causes, what doesn’t are all around and this is the part we’re focusing on because this may be the actual reason of the Alzheimer’s toxicity.”
“The significance of this paper is that it opens the doors to looking at the disease in a very different perspective,” said Rangachari. “It’s not just that they’ve examined what toxic agent exist, but the fact that they replicate to infect other neurons in the brain and that aspect has not been observed before then.”
It is estimated that 5.4 million Americans are affected by the disease, most over the age of sixty. Formation of the disease can lead to acute memory loss and difficulty performing day-to-day tasks.
While the ultimate objective may be years down the road, Kumar’s mission is clear. “Maybe we can get a cure for Alzheimer’s disease one day,” he said.