High levels of leptin, a hormone which has been linked to the prevention of over-eating, has also been connected to a reduced risk of Alzheimer's disease, according to a new study published this month.
Appearing in the Journal of the American Medical Association, the research from Boston University Medical Center analysed brain scans from 198 older people and discovered that a quarter of those with the lowest levels of leptin developed Alzheimer's disease, while only six per cent of those with the highest readings did the same.
Dr Susanne Sorensen, the head of research at the Alzheimer's Society, said it was encouraging but more funding needs to be given to dementia to chase such results.
"This is an important study that provides exciting data suggesting a link between higher levels of leptin and a reduced risk of Alzheimer's disease," she said. "Further investigation is now needed to understand this relationship."
Dr Sorensen added that this could move the world closer to getting an idea of the causes of the disease while providing more information for the development of drugs.
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