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Curr Gerontol Geriatr Res. 2012;2012:170276. doi: 10.1155/2012/170276. Epub 2012 Feb 21.

Neuroinflammation in the aging down syndrome brain; lessons from Alzheimer's disease.

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Department of Physiology, Sanders-Brown Center on Aging, University of Kentucky, 800 S Limestone Street, Lexington, KY 40536, USA.


Down syndrome (DS) is the most genetic cause of mental retardation and is caused by the triplication of chromosome 21. In addition to the disabilities caused early in life, DS is also noted as causing Alzheimer's-disease-like pathological changes in the brain, leading to 50-70% of DS patients showing dementia by 60-70 years of age. Inflammation is a complex process that has a key role to play in the pathogenesis of Alzheimer's disease. There is relatively little understood about inflammation in the DS brain and how the genetics of DS may alter this inflammatory response and change the course of disease in the DS brain. The goal of this review is to highlight our current understanding of inflammation in Alzheimer's disease and predict how inflammation may affect the pathology of the DS brain based on this information and the known genetic changes that occur due to triplication of chromosome 21.

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