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Breast Cancer Gene May Affect Alzheimer’s

TIME 11/30/2015 -- Since 1994, scientists have known that mutations in the BRCA gene can contribute to a higher risk of developing breast and ovarian cancers. But for the first time, researchers say that the gene may also play a part in the nerve death that’s responsible for Alzheimer’s disease.

Reporting in the journal Nature Communications, Lennart Mucke and his colleagues at the Gladstone institute of Neurological Disease have found that the BRCA1 gene not only affects the way cells can grow by promoting cancer, but can also interfere with nerve cells’ ability to repair their DNA.

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