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Exp Neurol. 2010 Jun;223(2):267-81. doi: 10.1016/j.expneurol.2009.08.009. Epub 2009 Aug 19.

Neurogenesis and Alzheimer's disease: at the crossroads.

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1
Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology, College of Medicine, 808 S Wood St. M/C 512, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL 60612, USA. olazarov@uic.edu

Abstract

While a massive and progressive neuronal loss in specific areas such as the hippocampus and cortex unequivocally underlies cognitive deterioration and memory loss in Alzheimer's disease, noteworthy alterations take place in the neurogenic microenvironments, namely, the subgranule layer of the dentate gyrus and the subventricular zone. Compromised neurogenesis presumably takes place earlier than onset of hallmark lesions or neuronal loss, and may play a role in the initiation and progression of neuropathology in Alzheimer's disease. Neurogenesis in the adult brain is thought to play a role in numerous forms and aspects of learning and memory and contribute to the plasticity of the hippocampus and olfactory system. Misregulated or impaired neurogenesis on the other hand, may compromise plasticity and neuronal function in these areas and exacerbate neuronal vulnerability. Interestingly, increasing evidence suggests that molecular players in Alzheimer's disease, including PS1, APP and its metabolites, play a role in adult neurogenesis. In addition, recent studies suggest that alterations in tau phosphorylation are pronounced in neurogenic areas, and may interfere with the potential central role of tau proteins in neuronal maturation and differentiation. On the other hand, numerous neurogenic players, such as Notch-1, ErbB4 and L1 are substrates of alpha- beta- and gamma- secretase that play a major role in Alzheimer's disease. This review will discuss current knowledge concerning alterations of neurogenesis in Alzheimer's disease with specific emphasis on the cross-talk between signaling molecules involved in both processes, and the ways by which familial Alzheimer's disease-linked dysfunction of these signaling molecules affect neurogenesis in the adult brain.

PMID:
19699201
PMCID:
PMC2864344
DOI:
10.1016/j.expneurol.2009.08.009
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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