Excerpt from an article written by Dr. Stefanie Novakowski from the Kastrup Lab which was first published on the Centre of Blood Research’s website. This article highlights the research conducted by the Kastrup and Jefferies Lab at the Michael Smith Laboratories, in collaboration with the Centre for Blood Research, the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at UBC, and the Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Alzheimer’s disease is a devastating neurological disorder with no known cure. Characterized by gradual cognitive decline, its effects are felt throughout Canada. Over half a million Canadians are living with dementia, and Alzheimer’s disease is a major contributor to this number. There are several links between Alzheimer’s disease pathology and blood clotting, however, the biochemical pathways connecting these two processes are poorly defined. In a step towards clarifying this relationship, members of Kastrup and Jefferies Labs at the Centre of Blood Research recently characterized the role of the essential clotting protein, coagulation factor XIII (FXIII), in the development of harmful beta amyloid deposits found in Alzheimer’s disease.