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Does brain over-activity lead to Alzheimer's disease?

Does brain over-activity lead to Alzheimer's disease?
17th August 2012

Too much activity in the brain may lead to the development of Alzheimer's disease, according to a new study.

Researchers from the Netherlands found that high baseline levels of neuronal activity in the best connected parts of the brain could cause Alzheimer's. 

Willem de Haan, first author of the study, stated that this "implies that the investigation of factors regulating neuronal activity may open up novel ways to detect, elucidate and counter the disease".

The discovery was made when researchers used a realistic computational model of the human cortex to simulate progressive synaptic damage to brain regions based on their level of activity.

Investigating the effect this had on the remaining network, it was found that there was a loss and slowing of neuronal activity, a loss of communication between brain areas and changes in brain network organisations.

These findings contribute further to research suggesting that brain activity can cause dementia, such as depression.

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