IL33 is an immune molecule which was found to
reverse the symptoms and cognitive decline of Alzheimer’s disease’s in mice in study
published in the journal “proceedings of the national academy of Sciences(PNAS)”.
A mouse model of Alzheimer’s disease called APP/PS1 was used to check the
effect of this injection. These mice displayed cognitive decline as well as the
accumulation of beta amyloid proteins in their brains both of which are symptoms
of the disease. Studies on patients with Alzheimer’s disease showed that they
have low levels of IL33. Although the role that this molecule plays in the
disease is not known, it is abundant particularly in the external nervous
system. the IL33 injections into aged mice rapidly improved their memory and
cognitive function in a week. These aged mice mirrored results to that of
normal mice of the same age.
IL33 mobilizes microglia (immune cells in the brain)
so that they surround amyloid plaques and reduce the size of the plaques by
engulfing and digesting them. IL33 induces An enzyme called neprilysin which degrades
the soluble amyloid. The IL33 injection reduces the expression of proinflammatory
genes including IL-1?, IL-6, and NLRP3,in aged mice. The IL33 injection inhibits
inflammation in the brain tissue which has been shown to increase plaque and
tangle formation. From these results we can conclude that IL33 have the potential
to serve as gene therapy in Alzheimer’s disease.
Mistakes on chromosome 21 called mutations cause
Alzheimer’s disease. Many investments into the human genome project and
development of low cost and rapid DNA sequencing and informatics tools have revolutionized
the understanding of these genetic diseases and opened the door for the
advancement of genomic medicine. Two categories of these new technologies are :
gene therapy and gene editing.
Gene therapy is where a new gene is transferred into
cells of a defective gene, however gene is generally only suited for a limited
set of diseases caused by genetic mutations . Also gene therapy does not remove
or modify defective DNA whereas Genome editing
modifies defective DNA at a particular locus. Genome editing has the potential
to deliver this technique to a broad range of genetic diseases; One of the new
techniques is called CRISPR.