Alzheimer's, atherosclerosis, and aggregates: a role for bacterial degradation.

Nutr Rev. 2007 Dec;65(12 Pt 2):S221-7.

Alzheimer's, atherosclerosis, and aggregates: a role for bacterial degradation.

de Grey ADNJ.

Abstract

Abstract:

Several of the most prevalent and severe age-related diseases, notably Alzheimer's disease and atherosclerosis, feature the accumulation of non-degradable aggregates within the lysosomes of disease-affected cells. At an early point in disease progression, the breakdown of lysosomal contents by the resident catabolic enzymes stops working properly. A return of lysosomal enzymatic activity to pre-disease levels may restore aggregate elimination. In this review, a method of bioremediation-derived lysosomal enzyme enhancement is proposed, featuring the cellular introduction of microbial-isolated enzymes, or xenoenzymes. The benefits and challenges of using xenoenzymes to break down aggregates are discussed. As the size of our elderly population grows, the incidence of age-related diseases will increase, necessitating the exploration of radical, but potentially powerful, therapeutic strategies.