A chemical found in celery and green pepper may help ease symptoms including memory loss of people suffering from brain diseases such as Alzheimer's, according to a study published on Monday.

Researchers from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign looked at the effects of luteolin on the brains of mice, according to the study, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

They found that the chemical compound reduced inflammation and said that in the right doses it could be used to treat patients with brain inflammation caused by conditions such as Alzheimer's and Creutzfeldt-Jacob Disease.

Specifically, luteolin, the researchers said, could combat dementia that stems from brain inflammation; memory loss is a symptom of dementia.

The study found that when the chemical was put in the drinking water of mice, it reduced inflammation in the brain triggered by a bacterial toxin and blocked signals from cells that would normally have led to an inflammatory reaction. The mice were given luteolin over a period of 21 days.

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