A key cellular mechanism that alters brain cell function in Huntington's disease has been uncovered by scientists at the Brain Research Centre and Centre for Molecular Medicine and Therapeutics in Canada.
Huntington's disease, the inherited degenerative brain condition that causes motor and cognitive impairment, was given to mice and it was discovered that the genetic mutation causing Huntington's disease results in an excessive number of special receptors found at the surface of brain cells.
Researchers added that by using Memantine, a drug used to treat Alzheimer's disease, it could mitigate damage and slow Huntington's disease progression in its early stages.
Dr Michael Hayden, director of the Centre for Molecular Medicine and Therapeutics, professor in the UBC Department of Medical Genetics, as well as the co-author of the study, said that Memantine's positive effects appear to be "dose-specific".
He continued: "Before it can be prescribed to treat Huntington's disease, we need to know how to determine appropriate dosing and whether it interferes with other essential cellular and brain functions."
The leading organisation currently promoting the fight against the condition in the UK is the Huntington's Disease Association.
Find out how Barchester works to create safe and understanding environments for those living with Huntington's Disease.