"Give with a free hand, but give only your own."
 -- J.R.R. Tolkien The Children of Hurin
- Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor (BDNF) -

General Information:

Wikipedia entry:
Dr. Ray Shahelien entry: 


Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor (BDNF)

See also Lion's Mane Mushroom

Alzheimer's Prevented And Reversed With Natural Protein In Animal Models
ScienceDaily (Feb. 9, 2009)
"Memory loss, cognitive impairment, brain cell degeneration and cell death were prevented or reversed in several animal models after treatment with a naturally occurring protein called brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF). The study by a University of California, San Diego-led team published in the February 8, 2009 issue of Nature Medicine shows that BDNF treatment can potentially provide long-lasting protection by slowing, or even stopping the progression of Alzheimer's disease in animal models... For these experiments, the researchers injected the BDNF gene or protein in a series of cell culture and animal models, including transgenic mouse models of Alzheimer's disease; aged rats; rats with induced damage to the entorhinal cortex; aged rhesus monkeys, and monkeys with entorhinal cortex damage...."

Axons Necessary For Voluntary Movement Regenerated
ScienceDaily (Apr. 9, 2009)
"For the first time, researchers have clearly shown regeneration of a critical type of nerve fiber that travels between the brain and the spinal cord and which is required for voluntary movement... "This finding establishes a method for regenerating a system of nerve fibers called corticospinal motor axons. Restoring these axons is an essential step in one day enabling patients to regain voluntary movement after spinal cord injury,"... This work builds on another study from Tuszynski's laboratory, published in the February 8, 2009 issue of Nature Medicine, which reported that BDNF also exhibits potential as a therapy for reducing brain cell loss in Alzheimer's disease..."

On January 07, 2009 11:02 AM Dr Mary Newport posted the following to the "New Study: Brain starvation appears to trigger AD" topic on the Alz.org Medications and Treatments forum:
"...There is a substance called BDNF (brain derived neurotrophic factor) that is believed to be involved with this and it increase with vigorous exercise and learning."

On February 15, 2009 01:30 PM RArmant post the following to the "Ultimate Alzheimer's Cocktail" topic:
"Fish oil can help keep the arteries from blocking up. DHA and EPA both drive down blood triglyceride level about equally. However DHA appears to be important for the brain. It can help increase Brain-derived neurotrophic factor(bdnf). Bdnf might help with brain repair... My suggestion for Alzheimer's is to go with fish oil that has a high DHA to EPA ratio such as Carlson's Super-DHA that contains 500 mgs of DHA and 100 mg of EPA per capsule."

There is also mention of BDNF in a post by vend95 on May 05, 2008 in the "Promising Drug PRX-03140" topic:
"PRX-03140 is a novel, oral investigational drug candidate for Alzheimer's disease. It is selective for the 5-HT4 receptor in the brain and is believed to stimulate both acetylcholine production and release - which enables symptomatic improvement in Alzheimer's patients - and the alpha-secretase pathway - which may slow Alzheimer's disease progression. Recent Phase 2a results indicated that patients receiving daily oral 150 mg doses of PRX-03140 as monotherapy for two weeks achieved a mean 3.6 point improvement on the Alzheimer's Disease Assessment Scale cognitive subscale (ADAS-cog) versus a 0.9 point worsening in patients on placebo (p= 0.021). In three Phase 1 trials and the Phase 2a trial, with more than 180 patients and healthy subjects, PRX-03140 has been well-tolerated. In a 14-day Phase 1b clinical trial, treatment with PRX-03140 resulted in changes in brain wave activity in Alzheimer's patients that are consistent with those seen in clinical trials with currently approved drugs for Alzheimer's disease. In preclinical studies, PRX-03140 has shown to improve cognitive function through increasing levels of acetylcholine, and has led to increased levels of soluble amyloid precursor protein (sAPP) and brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) in regions of the brain known to be important for memory."

Post by neuroprof on May 04, 2009 01:04 PM:
"There is growing evidence to suggest that amino acids such as acetyl-l-carnitine, l-tyrosine, and cysteine are critical to the aging brain and may be crucial in the production of BDNFA (Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor)."

Post by neuroprof on July 31, 2009 10:41 AM
"...In terms of other amino acids that may be good N-acetyl-l-cysteine looks like it can help with the production of BDNF (brain-derived neurotrophic factor)..."

Post by lucho on August 01, 2009 07:12 PM
"According to some trials and researches Mianserin and Remeron are the only psychotropic drugs which are allowed for different dementias because benzodiazepines and neuroleptics deplete some neurotransmitters in the brain. Mianserin and Remeron also stimulate BDNF and NGF (Nerve Growth Factor) release in the brain."

Neural Stem Cells May Rescue Memory In Advanced Alzheimer's, Mouse Study Suggests
ScienceDaily (July 22, 2009)
UC Irvine scientists have shown for the first time that neural stem cells can rescue memory in mice with advanced Alzheimer's disease, raising hopes of a potential treatment for the leading cause of elderly dementia that afflicts 5.3 million people in the U.S... The stem cells didn't improve cognition by becoming new neurons, nor did they act by reducing the number of plaques and tangles. Rather, the stem cells were found to have secreted a protein called brain-derived neurotrophic factor, or BDNF. This caused existing tissue to sprout new neurites, strengthening and increasing the number of connections between neurons. When the team selectively reduced BDNF from the stem cells, the benefit was lost, providing strong evidence that BDNF is critical to the effect of stem cells on memory and neuronal function... Diseased mice injected directly with BDNF also improved cognitively but not as much as with the neural stem cells, which provided a more long-term and consistent supply of the protein...

You can also do a search on ScienceDaily.com for BDNF

Supplementing with DHA (fish oil) increases BDNF?

Chronic Administration of DHA and UMP Improves the Impaired Memory of Environmentally Impoverished Rats
Sarah Holguin, Yi Huang, Jenny Liu, and Richard Wurtman
UMP and DHA may protect the brains of IC reared animals by restoring neuronal function to levels normally observed in brains of control or EC rats. Rats exposed to IC conditions [43] or made DHA-deficient [44] have decreased brain weight and size, while DHA administration increases brain weight and size [44]. Brains of IC reared rats also exhibit decreased neurogenesis [45] and synaptogenesis [46], DHA has been shown to promote neurite outgrowth in hippocampal neurons [47] and uridine promotes neurite outgrowth from PC12 cells [24]. DHA supplementation increased brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) levels in rats [48] while consuming a diet deficient in DHA decreased these levels [49]; BDNF induces neurogenesis in the hippocampal dentate gyrus [50]..

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Updated: July 2, 2012
Inception: July 2, 2012