Tuesday, 23 July 2013

Ginkgo extract effective in treating Vascular dementia

Neural stem cells proliferate in the subventricular zone and hippocampal dentate gyrus of adult mammals. However, the number of endogenous neural stem cells is insufficient to prevent cerebral ischemia/reperfusion injuries - like vascular dementia - so it is important to stimulate endogenous neural stem cell proliferation and differentiation.

The ginkgo biloba extract EGb761 effectively and safely treats memory loss and cognitive impairments in patients with senile dementia. Prof. Yuliang Wang and team from Weifang Medical University observed the effects of EGb761 on proliferation of neural stem cells in the subventricular zone and dentate gyrus of rats with vascular dementia.

Researchers found that the ginkgo biloba extract EGb761 promoted and prolonged the proliferation of neural stem cells in the subventricular zone and dentate gyrus of rats with vascular dementia. The cells continued to proliferate at 4 months. EGb761 also significantly improved learning and memory in rats with vascular dementia. 

These findings provide a new idea and approach to further explore the induced proliferation of neural stem cells in situ in the treatment of vascular dementia.

Ginkgo is a unique species of tree with no close living relatives. The ginkgo is a living fossil, recognisably similar to fossils dating back 270 million years. Native to China, the tree is widely cultivated and was introduced early to human history. It has various uses in traditional medicine and as a food.

Vascular dementia is the second most common form of dementia following Alzheimer's disease caused by problems in the supply of blood to the brain. 

Video about Vascular dementia

Reference
Jiwei Wang, Wen Chen, Yuliang Wang1 (2013). A ginkgo biloba extract promotes proliferation of endogenous neural stem cells in vascular dementia rats** Neural Regeneration Research : doi:10.3969/j.issn.1673-5374.2013.18.003

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