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Alzheimer's Disease risk may begin in the womb.
Alzheimer's Disease risk may begin in the womb.

Mothers who eat high fat foods while pregnant may leave their children more vulnerable to developing Alzheimer's Disease.

A pregnant mother's eating habits may influence her unborn child's chances of developing Alzheimer's, new research has suggested.
Scientists found that offspring of mice fed a high-fat diet were more likely as adults to experience impaired blood flow in the brain, a feature linked to the disease.
When the offspring were also fed a high-fat diet their brains became less able to rid themselves of harmful amyloid protein, which accumulates in sticky tangles in the brains of Alzheimer's patients.
More work is needed but the study could have important implications for humans, the researchers believe.
Lead scientist Dr Cheryl Hawkes, from the University of Southampton, said: "Our preliminary findings suggest that mothers' diets during pregnancy may have long-term effects on their children's brains and vascular health.

"We still need to do more work to understand how our findings translate to humans, but we have known for some time that protecting mothers' health during pregnancy can help lower the risk of health problems for their children.
"Our next step will be to investigate how our findings could relate to Alzheimer's disease in people. We hope these results could provide a new lead for research to understand how to prevent the disease."

The research was presented at the Alzheimer's Research UK conference taking place in Oxford this week.  25 Mar 2014.

"Alzheimer's is a complicated disease and it's likely that our risk is affected by a number of different genetic and environmental factors.
"Research to understand these factors can help equip us to take steps to prevent the disease, but in the meantime, evidence suggests we can lower our risk by eating a healthy, balanced diet, doing regular exercise, not smoking and keeping our blood pressure and weight in check."


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