Recent reports out of the recent Alzheimer's Association International Conference from researchers at NYU's Grossman School of Medicine showed evidence of a strong correlation between COVID 19 infection and acceleration of Alzheimer's disease pathology onset. They found that the patients admitted to the hospital for COVID 19 with neurologic events were largely (51%) diagnosed with toxic metabolic encephalopathy (TME) consisting mainly of septic and hypoxic ischemia. More than 50% of all subjects in the study who were followed for 6 months developed impaired cognitive functioning that diminished their ability to perform activities of daily living. However, the subjects who were followed who had been diagnsoed with COVID 19 were twice as functionally compromised when compared to the control sample.
The study also identified a number of plasma biomarkers associated with neuronal injury and dementia that were elevated in the COVID 19 cohort compared with controls. One measure in particular was Aβ42 which were significantly lower in the plasma which suggests increased levels would be found in the brain. This protein is shown to be elevated in people diagnosed with Alzheimer's and increases in line with disease progression.
It is therefore worth noting that early animal research conducted at Durham University on the use of 1070nm pulsed infrared light stimulation noted marked decreases in Aβ42 found after photobiomodulation treatment. (Grillo,2013). This combined with the recent evidence (Nizmutdinov,etal, 2021) of significant functional improvement in cognitive, behavioral and motor symptoms following 60 days of brief, twice-daily, self-administered 1070nm pulsed PBM therapy, It would not seem very unreasonable then to assume that intensive transcranial 1070nm photobiomodulation therapy could be useful in mitigation of neurological sequelae from COVID 19 infection.
Grillo,SL, Duggett NA, Ennaceur A, Chazot PL. Non-invasive infrared therapy (1072 nm) reduces β-amyloid protein levels in the brain of an Alzheimer's disease mouse model, TASTPM. J Photochem Photobiol B. 2013 Jun 5;123:13-22. doi: 10.1016/j.jphotobiol.2013.02.015.
Transcranial Near Infrared Light Stimulations Improve Cognition in Patients with Dementia.
Nizamutdinov, D, Qi, X, Berman,MH, Dougal, G, Dayawansa, S, Wu,X, Yi, S, Stevens, AB, Huang, JH. Aging and Disease, Volume 12, Number 5, June, 2021.
View article from Medscape here: www.medscape.com/viewarticle/955755?
Our team regularly publishes articles and blog posts on the latest research and news coming out of our group and the field in general.