A study conducted by Prof. Na Duk Lyul and Prof. Jang Jong Wook published in 『Scientific Reports』
A study conducted by Prof. Na Duk Lyul from the Department of Neurology and Prof. Jang Jong Wook from the SMC Stem Cell & Regenerative Medicine Institute was published in 『Scientific Reports』 (Impact Factor 5.578), a sister journal of 『Nature』 in January this year.
In this study, the team discovered that co-culturing of the mesenchymal stem cells isolated from the human umbilical cord with neurons exposed to Alzheimer's disease results in direct secretion of Agouti-related peptide (AgRP) from the stem cells, which in turn increases the activity of 26S proteasome of the neurons.
26S proteasome is a proteolytic enzyme system of eukaryotes, and it has been reported that degenerative brain diseases such as Alzheimer's disease can be accelerated when the activity of the system is decreased in neurons and various proteins not decomposed accumulate in the brain as a consequence.
It was confirmed in this study that the activity of 26S proteasome was decreased in the brains of mice affected by Alzheimer's disease compared to that of normal mice, and as a result, the ubiquitinated protein, the substrate proteins of 26S proteasome, was accumulated in the brains of mice affected by Alzheimer’s.
The researchers confirmed that the activity of the 26S proteasome increased and the degradation of the ubiquitinated protein was accelerated when the umbilical cord mesenchymal stem cells or recombinant AgRP were injected into the brains of mice affected by Alzheimer's disease.
These results demonstrate that mesenchymal stem cells or recombinant AgRP can treat Alzheimer's disease. The results were published in the on-line edition of 『Scientific Reports』 (Impact Factor 5.578), 『Nature』’s sister journal, in January this year.
Based on the results of this study, domestic patent and PCT applications are being prepared, and a clinical study where the recombinant AgRP is directly administered to patients with Alzheimer’s through Intrabrain Injector (IBI), which is being developed by Prof. Na, is also on the way.