[IWAR] BIO enzyme protects brain?

From: 7Pillars Partners (partnersat_private)
Date: Thu Jan 22 1998 - 20:21:10 PST

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    Enzyme Protects Brain Cells
    NEW YORK (Reuters) -- A potent antioxidant enzyme -- manganese superoxide
    dismutase (MnSOD) -- may protect nerve
    cells in the brain against damage caused by stroke and Alzheimer's disease, say
    researchers at the University of Kentucky
    Medical Center. 
    Scientists hope the discovery will lead to new therapies to fight neurological
    The enzyme is one of the primary antioxidant enzymes in mammals. It has been
    shown to block the build-up within cells of
    superoxide, a free radical molecule that can accumulate and damage the
    molecular structure of body tissue through a process
    called oxidative stress. 
    In the new studies on the enzyme, researchers at the University of Kentucky in
    Lexington inserted the human gene for MnSOD
    into human and rat brain cells, which were placed in cell cultures. They found
    that the cells that subsequently produced an
    abundance of MnSOD were protected against death from experimental processes
    that mimicked stroke and Alzheimer's
    In addition, when the researchers introduced the human MnSOD gene into mice,
    creating a strain of animals whose nerve cells
    overproduced the enzyme, the animals' brain cells showed less damage from an
    experimentally-induced stroke than did those of
    normal mice. 
    The researchers say their findings indicate that treatments aimed at blocking
    superoxide accumulation "may prove beneficial in
    the array of degenerative disorders that involve oxidative stress." SOURCE: The
    Journal of Neuroscience (1998;18)

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