Scientists at Tel Aviv University fed an extract from cinnamon bark, called CEppt, in liquid form to mice and fruit flies with Alzheimer’s. They found the activity levels and life expectancy of those who were given the extract were comparable to their healthy counterparts.
The researchers, whose findings are published in the journal PLoS ONE, also found the extract blocked the build-up of a toxic protein called amyloid in the brain – a hallmark of Alzheimer’s disease.
The scientists now want to investigate whether CEppt could have potential as a treatment for the disease.
Dr Marie Janson, Director of Development at Alzheimer’s Research UK, said:
“Although these results look promising in mice and fruit flies, it’s too soon to know what effect this extract would have in people. We wouldn’t recommend stocking up on cinnamon doughnuts just yet. The amount of cinnamon we would need to consume to have any hope of fighting Alzheimer’s would far exceed that found in an everyday diet. It will be important to follow up these findings to see whether drugs based on cinnamon extract could hold promise as a treatment for Alzheimer’s.
“There 820,000 people affected by dementia in the UK today, and if we are to offer them hope for the future, we must invest in research to find new treatments that are so desperately needed.”
Alzheimer’s Research UK