In the active search for new treatments for cognitive impairment, researchers are testing ISRIB,* an experimental drug that interferes with the integrated stress response in the brain. Overstimulation of this is associated with cognitive decline, increased inflammation in the brain, and neurodegeneration. Scientists treated old mice with ISRIB and, when compared with the untreated animals, found that they performed significantly better on maze-memory tests. The rodents were placed in and allowed to learn a maze. After a period of time, they were placed in the same one. In two different types of these puzzles, those treated with ISRIB were able to remember their way out significantly better than the untreated mice and showed a significant reduction in some markers of brain inflammation.
* ISRIB, integrated stress response inhibitor
Krukowski K, et al. Small molecule cognitive enhancer reverses age-related memory decline in mice. Elife. 2020;9:e62048. doi:10.7554/eLife.62048.