A Spicy-flavored and Colorful Platter to Support Healthy Brain and Eyesight

By Dr. Nancy Maurya

Contribution participating in the INPST 2018 Science Communication Awards contest.

Neurodegeneration: An age related issue

Neurodegeneration in different forms has been an increasing health concern worldwide as the population ages and hence it has been attracting the attention of many researchers. Examples of neurodegenerative disorders include Alzheimer’s disease (AD), Parkinson’s disease (PD), etc. along with retinal neurodegenerations like age-related macular degeneration (AMD) and glaucoma. AD is irreversible brain disorder occurring due to amyloid plaque formation that is characterized by gradual loss of memory and thinking ability, while PD is a motor system affecting disease involving neuronal death due to Lewy bodies’ formation. AMD involves gradual loss of central vision due to death of macular cells of the retina while glaucoma the infamous ‘Silent thief of vision’, involves increase in the intra-ocular pressure leading to slowly progressing, permanent blindness that begins from the peripheral vision loss. The underlying causes of all these diseases are quite similar like age, oxidative stress, genetic predisposition etc. They all seem quite related to each other with common mechanism of pathogenesis, however, complete understanding of these diseases is still under research. For instance, it is quite well known fact that AD involves β-Amyloid aggregates (plaques) which is the main causative protein in its pathology but role of this protein in ocular disorders like glaucoma is still elusive. β-Amyloid has however, been suggested to be playing an important role in pathogenesis of this ocular disorder by many scientific groups.

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