Reservatrol from Red Wine May Help Postpone the Onset of
Lots of press has been given recently to the health benefits of moderate
red wine or grape juice consumption. Some of the components of red wine and
grape juice, specifically resveratrol, quercetin and catechin, are powerful
antioxidants. Resveratrol, in particular, protects the nervous system 1 and
reduces the risk of developing Alzheimer's disease. (2,3) Alzheimer's
disease is characterized by the formation of amyloid- B (AB)
plaques or clumps in the brain. These AB plaques are an accumulation of AB
peptide. These plaques can be caused by making too much AB, not being able
to secrete AB from the cell, or failure to breakdown excess AB. Researchers
recently studied the effect of resveratrol on amyloid- B ( AB)
production in mouse nerve cells to see just how resveratrol slows plaque
formation. The researchers looked at how much AB was made by the cells with
and without the three compounds, resveratrol, quercetin and catechin. They
found that only resveratrol reduced the amount of AB made. By doing various
experiments, the research team was able to show that resveratrol did not
prevent excretion of AB nor did it interfere with the enzymes that made it.
They were able to show that resveratrol actually enhanced the natural
breakdown of AB by a component of the cell called a proteasome.
Proteins in a cell are regularly broken down by enzymes called proteases so
that worn out proteins can be removed and the building block amino acids
can be recycled. Proteosomes are made of a bundle of proteases that look
like a short stack of lifesavers with a gate at each end. The gate
recognizes proteins tagged for degradation and lets them inside the tube
where they are broken down to amino acids. Once again, the fruit of the
vine promotes healthy aging.
Abstracted by Susan Sweeny Johnson, PhD, Biochem, November 21, 2005, from Philippe Marambaud, Haitian Zhao, and Peter Davies , Resveratrol Promotes Clearance of Alzheimer's Disease Amyloid-B-Peptides, July 27, 2005, and in revised form, September 12, 2005 Published, JBC Papers in Press, September 14, 2005, DOI 10.1074/jbc.M508246200
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