Animal study shows that Green Tea at a high concentration, protects the memory and brain tissue in Alzheimer’s disease
The build-up of plaque caused by beta-amyloid protein deposits cause brain cell damage and death largely due to free radical damage. This is a large part of the loss of cognitive function and imminent death in Alzheimer's sufferers and Alzheimer’s is the most common form of dementia. The study focused on the potential role of Green Tea and its constituents to counter the oxidative stress induced by a build up of beta-amyloid protein in the brain of rats.
One group of five-week old rats acted as a control group and received no antioxidant while the other group received 0.5% Green Tea Extract that contained 63% EGCG and 23% of other Green Tea antioxidants in their drinking water. After 26 weeks the animals were tested in an eight-arm radial maze.
At the twenty-week mark the animals were further divided with some from both groups having beta-amyloid injected into their brain; they continued on Green Tea or no Green Tea as before. In the rats injected with beta-amyloid on Green Tea vs. those injected with the protein but without the antioxidant there was 42% to 50% less free radical activity in their brain. Also, the rats fed Green Tea Antioxidants but infused with the brain damaging protein performed better in memory function making fewer errors than the rats similarly treated but not protected by Green Tea. The study is published online ahead of print in the February 14th, 2008 issue of The Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry.