New research suggests that lowering levels of a particular protein in the brain could reverse cognitive decline associated with dementia. Scientists at the Yale School of Medicine found that the STEP protein appears to interact with amyloid - the toxic protein that builds up in the brain and kills cells - allowing dementia to develop. STEP is involved with learning and memory, and the study suggests that reducing its presence can reverse cognitive decline caused by amyloid in mice. The chief executive of the Alzheimer's Research Trust, Rebecca Wood, said the results were interesting, but no-one should get too carried away until trials have been conducted on humans. She said: "However, research like this is vital and we need to follow up every lead and investigate every avenue. "This will bring us the understanding we need to develop new treatments and defeat dementia." The Alzheimer's Society estimates that the number of people living with dementia is set to exceed one million by the year 2025.
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