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Learn Mem. 2001 Nov-Dec;8(6):301-8.

Learning and memory in transgenic mice modeling Alzheimer's disease.

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  • 1Department of Neurology, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, Minnesota 55455, USA. hsiao005@umn.edu


Recent advances in behavioral analyses of transgenic mouse models of Alzheimer's disease (AD) are discussed, and their impact on our understanding of the molecular basis of cognitive impairment in AD is considered. Studies of the relationship between memory and A Beta in transgenic mice expressing the amyloid precursor protein (APP) and its variants suggest that aging promotes the formation of soluble A Beta assemblies mediating negative effects on memory. A significant component of memory loss in APP transgenic mice is apparently caused by soluble A Beta assemblies, but whether and how much of the dementia within individuals afflicted with AD is caused by these A Beta species is unclear. Future studies in composite transgenic mice developing amyloid plaques, neurofibrillary tangles, and other AD pathology may allow for the determination of the relative contribution of A Beta and non-A Beta components to dementia.

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