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Alzheimer Disease Report Alzheimer 's disease (AD) is a slowly progressive disease of the brain that is characterized by impairment of memory and eventually by disturbances in reasoning, planning, language, and perception. Many scientists believe that Alzheimer 's disease results from an increase in the production or accumulation of a specific protein (beta-amyloid protein) in the brain that leads to nerve cell death. The likelihood of having Alzheimer 's disease increases substantially after the age of 70 and may affect around 50% of persons over the age of 85. Nonetheless, Alzheimer 's disease is not a normal part of aging and is not something that inevitably happens in later life. For example, many people live to over 100 years of…show more content…
Problems of memory, particularly for recent events (short-term memory) are common early in the course of Alzheimer 's disease. For example, the individual may, on repeated occasions, forget to turn off an iron or fail to recall which of the morning 's medicines were taken. Mild personality changes, such as less spontaneity, apathy, and a tendency to withdraw from social interactions, may occur early in the illness. The cause(s) of Alzheimer 's disease is (are) not known. The "amyloid cascade hypothesis" is the most widely discussed and researched hypothesis about the cause of Alzheimer 's disease. The strongest data supporting the amyloid cascade hypothesis comes from the study of early-onset inherited (genetic) Alzheimer 's disease. Mutations associated with Alzheimer 's disease have been found in about half of the patients with early-onset disease. In all of these patients, the mutation leads to excess production in the brain of a specific form of a small protein fragment called ABeta (Aβ). Many scientists believe that in the majority of sporadic (for example, non-inherited) cases of Alzheimer 's disease (these make up the vast majority of all cases of Alzheimer 's disease) there is too little removal of this Aβ protein rather than too much production. In any case, much of the research in finding ways to prevent or slow down Alzheimer 's disease has focused on ways to decrease the

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