As part of a clinical trial examining possible solutions to waitlist for Alzheimer’s patients, a group of scientists at NYU Langone Health took brain scans of 38 people between the ages of 45 and 70. The scans were done to analyze their brain patterns and blood vessels. Each patient also had an MRI scan to assess their brain size and the strength of their brain cells.
These scans, combined with head scans of a control group, revealed something quite unexpected: Researchers found microstomas — areas of abnormal blood vessels — in every single one of the participants.
Researchers are still unsure exactly what causes microstomas in a healthy person. But they suspect that microstomas might be caused by the structure of nerves traveling to the brain and be a “spur of innovation,” the study’s co-author, Dr. Guohua Li, told Time Magazine.
The researchers are now trying to determine if stem cells could provide new cells that mimic the growth of brain cells and replace old ones that have already died.