Posted on Jul 24, 2023, 4 p.m.
According to an experimental study published in the journal Cell Reports, a muscle-building supplement called beta-hydroxy beta-methylbutyrate, also known as HMB, may help to protect memory, reduce plaques and help to prevent the progression of Alzheimer’s disease.
- Muscle-building supplement HMB binds to PPARα
- HMB increases the morphological plasticity of hippocampal neurons via PPARα
- Oral HMB improves hippocampal functions in 5XFAD mice using PPARα
- Oral HMB lowers plaques in 5XFAD mice through PPARα
Alzheimer’s disease is the most common human neurodegenerative disorder, representing close to two-thirds of all cases of dementia. The first clinical signs of the brain-wasting and debilitating disease typically appear after the age of 60 years old, and unfortunately, there are currently no known cures for this irreversible and progressive disease that can eventually make it almost impossible to carry out even the simplest tasks.
HMB is an over-the-counter supplement that is commonly available in health, sports, and fitness stores and it is not a steroid. HMB is considered to be safe, even with long-term use, and it has no known side effects, it is used by bodybuilders to increase their exercise-induced gains in muscle size and strength while improving their exercise performance.
“This may be one of the safest and the easiest approaches to halt disease progression and protect memory in Alzheimer’s disease patients,” said Kalipada Pahan, Ph.D., the Floyd A. Davis, MD, Professor of Neurology and professor of neurological sciences, biochemistry, and pharmacology at RUSH Medical College.
According to the neurological researchers at RUSH, animal studies have shown that HMB successfully reduced plaques and increased factors for neuronal growth to help protect learning and memory. Findings indicate that HMB stimulates PPARa nuclear hormone receptors within the brain that regulate the transport of fatty acids, which may be the key to the success of the supplement as a neuroprotector.
“Understanding how the disease works is important to developing effective drugs to protect the brain and stop the progression of Alzheimer’s disease,” Pahan said. “Our study found that after oral consumption, HMB enters into the brain to increase these beneficial proteins, restore neuronal connections and improve memory and learning in mice with Alzheimer’s-like pathology, such as plaques and tangles.”
“If mouse results with HMB are replicated in Alzheimer’s disease patients, it would open up a promising avenue of treatment of this devastating neurodegenerative disease,” Pahan said.
As with anything you read on the internet, this article should not be construed as medical advice; please talk to your doctor or primary care provider before changing your wellness routine. This article is not intended to provide a medical diagnosis, recommendation, treatment, or endorsement.
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