The Journal of the American Osteopathic Association published an interesting study by Hope Tobey and colleagues in 2019 which investigated the effect of the CV4 technique (cranial osteopathic technique aiming to compress the fourth ventricle) on an aged rat model of Alzheimer disease. In an aging brain, the pulsation of the cerebral vasculature and fluid circulation decreases, which impairs fluid exchange and supports neuroinflammation that might result in Alzheimer disease. Since no pharmacological mechanism are available to increase the brain’s fluid circulation (and therefore clearance of brain-derived metabolic waste products), the authors tested whether the CV4 technique might affect spatial memory and substrates associated with metabolic waste clearance. They found significant improvement of spatial memory as well as reduced amyloid β levels, activated astrocytes, and improved neurotransmission after 7 days of treatment compared to no intervention control group. Conclusively, molecular mechanisms of cranial osteopathic techniques in aged rats were demonstrated, which might inspire further research and promote the use of osteopathy in Alzheimer disease.
Tobey, H., Lucas, T., Bledsoe, D., Mykins, M., Campbell, C., Berr, S.S., Sasser, T., Helm, R., Brolinson, P.G., Klein, B.G., Costa, B.M., 2019. Effect of Osteopathic Cranial Manipulative Medicine on an Aged Rat Model of Alzheimer Disease. The Journal of the American Osteopathic Association, 119(11), 712-723.