Pomegranates Can Help Alzheimer’s Patients

A recent study has found that urolithin A, a natural compound found in pomegranates, may enhance memory and potentially aid in treating Alzheimer’s disease. Researchers at the University of Copenhagen observed significant improvements in memory in mice with Alzheimer’s who were treated with urolithin A.

Alzheimer’s disease manifests through symptoms like forgetfulness, difficulty with words, and confusion about time and place. The study’s findings suggest that urolithin A could mitigate these symptoms and other consequences of dementia, according to Vilhelm Bohr, Affiliate Professor at the University’s Department of Cellular and Molecular Medicine.

While the study was conducted on mice, the results are promising enough to warrant upcoming human clinical trials. Previous research from the same team highlighted the role of nicotinamide riboside in facilitating the removal of damaged mitochondria from the brain, a process crucial for addressing neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s.

Bohr explained that many patients with these conditions experience mitochondrial dysfunction, hindering the brain’s ability to clear out weak mitochondria. Stimulating this clearance process, known as mitophagy, has shown positive effects on brain function. Interestingly, urolithin A appears to stimulate mitophagy similarly to nicotinamide riboside supplements, potentially offering therapeutic benefits.

Despite these promising findings, researchers are still determining the optimal dosage of urolithin A for humans. Bohr emphasized the need for further investigation but expressed optimism that urolithin A could be used preventively with minimal side effects, as observed in previous studies on related compounds.

The study, titled “Urolithin A improves Alzheimer’s disease cognition and restores mitophagy and lysosomal functions,” has been published in Alzheimer’s and Dementia.

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