Insulin inhaling, shows preliminary promise in reversing memory loss in Alzheimer’s patients. This latest news was shared by the research team at this weeks meeting of the Alzheimer’s Association International Conference 2019
Insulin — a hormone that helps regulate your blood sugar — appears to play a role in normal memory processes. Insulin irregularities may contribute to cognitive and brain changes associated with Alzheimer’s disease.
In the past several years, researchers have been investigating the use of insulin to treat Alzheimer’s disease. One of the challenges is how to provide insulin in such a way that it improves brain function without significantly disrupting your blood sugar levels. If your blood sugar drops too low, for example, it can create complications, such as confusion, heart palpitations, anxiety and visual disturbances.
Early research suggested that when taken as a nose spray, insulin could possibly improve memory and help preserve cognitive function in people with early Alzheimer’s disease or mild cognitive impairment.
This study, reported at the Conference, was done by researchers at the Wake Forest School of Medicine, in a small clinical comprised of eighteen participants. It involved giving inhaled insulin over 18 months.
One group, showed significant benefits in memory and thinking, day-to-day functioning, and biological markers for Alzheimer’s as seen in cerebro-spinal fluid.
Dr. Suzanne Craft, professor of gerontology and geriatric medicine at Wake Forest School of Medicine, notes that the improvements increased over time. Moreover, these improvements were observed in participants that were already showing dementia symptoms. The results presented at the conference, she says, provide strong support for doing a larger study.