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Lancet Neurol. 2004 Mar;3(3):169-78.

Insulin and neurodegenerative disease: shared and specific mechanisms.

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Geriatric Research, Education, and Clinical Center, Veterans Affairs Puget Sound Medical Center, Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, University of Washington School of Medicine, Seattle, 98108, USA.


Insulin has functions in the brain and dysregulation of these functions may contribute to the expression of late-life neurodegenerative disease. We provide a brief summary of research on the influence of insulin on normal brain function. We then review evidence that perturbation of this role may contribute to the symptoms and pathogenesis of various neurodegenerative disorders, such as Alzheimer's disease, vascular dementia, Parkinson's disease, and Huntington's disease. We conclude by considering whether insulin dysregulation contributes to neurodegenerative disorders through disease-specific or general mechanisms.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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