A new study suggests that copper, which enters the body in quantities that make up its average content in modern diets, can ultimately lead to the development of Alzheimer’s disease by lowering the body’s ability to eliminate toxic proteins in the brain, as well as due to that it promotes the adhesion of these proteins.
Copper is an important trace element of the diet, along with iron, it is necessary for the production of red blood cells and is important for the normal functioning of the immune system, blood vessels, nerve and bone tissue.
The body receives copper from various sources, including drinking water and food, such as oysters, nuts, red meat, fruits and vegetables, as well as when using dietary supplements.
However, now the results of a recent study using mouse and human cells, led by Professor Rashid Dean (researchprofessorRashidDeane, UniversityofRochester), showed that copper can accumulate in the brain and impair the body’s ability to eliminate amyloid beta proteins before they form plaques that are recognized as a hallmark of Alzheimer’s disease.
According to Professor Dean, it is obvious that the cumulative effect of copper leads to a disruption of the system for removing beta-amyloids from the brain. The output of amyloid beta is provided by the LRP1 protein, which binds to amyloid beta molecules and escorts them from the brain through the blood vessels. Researchers suggest that copper, which is found in drinking water and food, can play a role in the onset of Alzheimer’s disease.
In an experiment, mice were fed an amount of copper equivalent to three months; they then discovered copper in the cell walls of the smallest vessels that are involved in cerebral circulation.
Despite the fact that the presence of copper in the cell walls is part of the blood-brain barrier, over time, through oxidation, the accumulation of copper begins to impair the ability of the LRP1 protein to accompany beta-amyloid exit from the brain.