Sneaking drugs into the brain could treat conditions like Alzheimer’s

A method of drug delivery that uses one of the body’s own systems to sneak mRNA molecules past the blood-brain barrier could help treat conditions such as Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s and cancer


23 December 2022

Getting drugs into the brain to treat medical conditions is tough

Andrew Brookes/Westend61/Getty Images

A way of sneaking messenger RNA molecules into the brain could help us treat neurodegenerative conditions and brain tumours.

Illnesses that affect the brain can be difficult to medicate because the blood-brain barrier, which prevents pathogens in our bloodstream reaching our brain, also stops large potentially therapeutic molecules such as mRNAs getting across.

Now, Wenchao Gu at Cornell University in New York and her colleagues have developed a method that is based on innate, virus-like particles recently discovered in …

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