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Int J Alzheimers Dis. 2011 Apr 5;2011:974361. doi: 10.4061/2011/974361.

Function and comorbidities of apolipoprotein e in Alzheimer's disease.

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Department of Psychiatry, Douglas Mental Health University Institute, Perry Pavilion, E-3207.1, 6875 Lasalle Boulevard, Verdun, QC, Canada H4H1R3.


Alzheimer's disease (AD)-the most common type of dementia among the elderly-represents one of the most challenging and urgent medical mysteries affecting our aging population. Although dominant inherited mutation in genes involved in the amyloid metabolism can elicit familial AD, the overwhelming majority of AD cases, dubbed sporadic AD, do not display this Mendelian inheritance pattern. Apolipoprotein E (APOE), the main lipid carrier protein in the central nervous system, is the only gene that has been robustly and consistently associated with AD risk. The purpose of the current paper is thus to highlight the pleiotropic roles and the structure-function relationship of APOE to stimulate both the functional characterization and the identification of novel lipid homeostasis-related molecular targets involved in AD.

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