A l'UM la science [S01-ep25]: From Alzheimer's disease to the Charles Flahault heritage collection

This week on A l'UM la science, Fabrice Caudron, a researcher at Montpellier's Institute of Molecular Genetics, is our guest. He and his team have just discovered that a plant substance could protect the neurons of Alzheimer's patients. In the second half of the program, library curator Elizabeth Denton introduces us to the Charles Flahault heritage collection.

In France, it is estimated that 1,200,000 people could be affected by Alzheimer's disease or a related disorder. 750,000 people are currently diagnosed, representing 23% of the population over the age of 80, the majority of whom are women. For most people, Alzheimer's disease, named after the German doctor who discovered it in 1906, connotes memory loss.

On a personal note, I remember the day we realized that my grandmother was " losing the cards ", as we say in our house, in a slightly more severe way than her age could explain. "He had 7,000 cancer cells", she told us ten times in the space of an hour, referring to a sick neighbor. A month and several tests later, the verdict was in: Alzheimer's stage 2 for a degenerative disease that counts 3. I subsequently discovered that while memory loss was certainly the most striking symptom, it was unfortunately not the only one: behavioural problems, gestures, language... The cause was damage to the central nervous system due to the dysfunction of proteins essential to neurons and the appearance of plaques or aggregates on these same neurons.

Fabrice Caudron is a researcher at theMontpellier Institute of Molecular Genetics. He and his team have just discovered that a substance found in a plant may be able to protect the neurons of Alzheimer's patients. He tells us all about it in the next twenty minutes.

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In the second half of the show, we take you behind the scenes of the BU sciences, to the storeroom where you'll find a number of treasures, including the Charles Flahault heritage collection. A collection of photographic plates and prints made during the famous botanist's field trips. Library curator Elizabeth Denton takes us through these archives.

At UM la science you've got the program, here we go!

Production: Université de Montpellier/Divergence FM
Animation : Lucie Lecherbonnier
Aline Périault/Lucie Lecherbonnier
Reporting: Aline Périault
Editing: Bruno Bertrand
Adeline Floch'

Listen to the "A LUM LA SCIENCE" program on Divergence FM 93.9

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