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Alzheimers Disease Essay

2707 words - 11 pages

Alzheimer’s Disease

We live in an advanced world of technology and medicine. As much as many things positively impact society, numerous may also have a negative effect. Throughout the years, we were able to create cures through medicine that have allowed the life expectancy of the older generation to outlast the previous ones. But for many seniors, new problems arise that still require an antidote with the help of research and development. Even though females have a higher rate in life expectancy, they also have a greater chance in degenerating diseases; but both have an equal chance in getting a specific disease. One of which is the most common form of Dementia called Alzheimer’s ...view middle of the document...

As we get older, so does our body mind and soul as well as the alarming rate of being diagnosed with Alzheimer. Between the ages of 65 and 75, it can reach an estimated 1 in 20 people and 1 in 5 over the age of 80. It now reaches people as young as 40 and as the years go by, this disease would have a greater impact and target more people. Many don’t know why this disease occurs so rapidly. It could be that our minds are not built to last as long as our body now does. It can only absorb so much information that once at old age; the brain cannot produce any more new cells. As with getting wrinkles, grey hair, vision impairment and many more things, it’s a natural way of life to live and die including the slow deterioration of the brain. It’s normal for old people to forget especially since their brain doesn’t function as well as it used to but when their memory problems become so severe that they cannot function alone, well then it’s abnormal. This disease reaches many individuals each year but who exactly is more likely to retrieve it within the older population? Although factors within the environment may have some contributions, what really increases the chances of retrieving this disease is through genetic predisposition. If your family or ancestors carried out this disease, then the possible chances of you retrieving it is very extensive. There is a very wide connection with those diagnosed with Down syndrome that may be connected with Alzheimer’s. Down syndrome contains an extra chromosome 21 which causes the early stages of development in dementia at age 35. The occurrence of Alzheimer’s disease is very relative with patients possessing Down syndrome. Families that have high rates of Alzheimer’s have been found to have mutations in chromosome 14 and 1; resulting in the production of irregular proteins. If a parent with Alzheimer’s inherits one of these mutated genes then other family members within the bloodline have a 50/50 chance of developing it.
We may now understand the definition of Alzheimer’s and the age demographic it targets, but what major changes did this disease cause to the brain that produced such an impact? Well it was developed by a variety of changes; one of which was the development of plaque. There are certain types of proteins within the plaque called beta-amyloid which are relatively high within an Alzheimer’s patient. The beta-amyloid builds up in the brain and merges together to form an amyloid plaque. The second change occurring in the brain is the presence of neurofibrillary tangles. This consists of a protein called tau which conducts an important role in the arrangement of the neurons in the brain. This protein is afflicted by overactive enzymes in those with Alzheimer’s disease and results in the construction of cell-destroying “tangles.” The third cause is Brain inflammation. An excessive response is caused in the immune system because of the demanding effects of Alzheimer’s. This...

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