Drug Targeting

Alzheimer's disease (AD) is the most common form of dementia and it is characterized by the deposition of amyloid-β (Aβ) plaques and neurofibrillary tangles in the brain. However, the complete pathogenesis of the disease is still unknown. High level of serum cholesterol has been found to positively correlate with an increased risk of dementia and some studies have reported a decreased prevalence of AD in patients taking cholesterol-lowering drugs.
Here, Nestler and Lüscher link addiction circuits to epigenetic mechanisms that are engaged by drug exposure or reflect life experience. These molecular alterations may not only explain the basis of drug-evoked synaptic plasticity, but may also help understand individual addiction vulnerability.
About 7000 rare, or orphan, diseases affect more than 350 million people worldwide. Although these conditions collectively pose significant health care problems, drug companies seldom develop drugs for orphan diseases due to extremely limited individual markets. Consequently, developing new treatments for often life-threatening orphan diseases is primarily contingent on financial incentives from governments, special research grants, and private philanthropy.