Lower Levels Of Leptin Lead To Higher Risk Of Alzheimer's Disease
A new study on Alzheimer's disease performed by researchers from Boston University School Of Medicine and published in the Journal of the American Medical Association suggests that people with low levels of leptin have a higher risk of developing Alzheimer's disease than people with high levels of leptin.
Leptin is a hormone produced by fat cells that is key in regulating energy intake and metabolism. It basically sends signal to brain telling us to stop eating so we do not eat too much and overwhelm our system. But, it is also linked to brain development and memory.
People in the highest quartile of leptin had only a 6 percent risk of developing dementia over this time over a 12-year period, whereas people in the lowest quartile had a 25 percent risk of developing dementia,” said senior study author Dr. Sudha Seshadri, an associate professor of neurology at Boston University School of Medicine.
Alzheimer's disease is the most common form of dementia. It is incurable, degenerative and terminal. Thirty five million people around the world are believed to be suffering from Alzheimer's. By year 2050, the disease is expected to affect 107 million people. The cause of the disease is not well known, but researchers speculate the disease is associated with plaques and tangles in the brain.
That opens new doors on using leptin in preventative therapy. Measuring levels of leptin in an individual can also serve as a viable diagnostic option to determine the potential of developing Alzheimer's disease.