China has approved a seaweed-based drug for dementia. Brown seaweeds contain substances that inhibit nerve degeneration and brain inflammation. The drug will be tested worldwide soon.

Intestinal bacteria cause inflammation and degeneration of the brain. Reports that older people who eat seaweed resist Alzheimer’s disease have captivated scientists. A team from the Chinese Academy of Sciences, led by Geng Meiyu, found that the sugars contained in seaweed suppressed the multiplication of the intestinal bacteria just mentioned.

Brown Algae Carbohydrates

The active substance Oligomanate, under the further designation GV-971, is composed of brown seaweed oligosaccharides. Three-phase clinical trials have yielded promising results. The drug called Oligomannate has been available in China since late 2019. After China has approved the remedy against mild to moderate Alzheimer’s disease, Shangai Green Valley Pharmaceuticals launched the drug. Outside of China, clinic trials are planned for 2020 – in Asia, Europe, and the United States.

What’s Going on with the Brain?

Alzheimer’s disease can be defined as “an irreversible and progressive brain disorder that slowly destroys a person’s memory and thinking ability, and ultimately the ability to perform simple tasks,” as stated by the United States National Institute for Aging.

“The brain is getting squashy. The structure of the brain changes into a jelly-like mass”, shared an experience a medical student who was involved in an autopsy for study purposes.

The picture of the leaf demonstrates changes to the brain:

The causes of Alzheimer’s disease have not yet been elucidated. Some sources report that in addition to genetic predisposition and inappropriate lifestyle, infections such as herpes virus can cause the disease. A high incidence of dementia occurs in people working in the aluminum industry.

We all wish to keep cognitive functions in good shape for as long as possible — no harm to include brown seaweed in the diet.

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