Format

Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
BMC Med. 2014 Nov 11;12:206. doi: 10.1186/s12916-014-0206-2.

The overlap between vascular disease and Alzheimer's disease--lessons from pathology.

Author information

1
Institute of Neuroscience, Newcastle University, Campus for Ageing and Vitality, Newcastle upon Tyne, NE4 5PL, UK. j.attems@ncl.ac.uk.

Abstract

Recent epidemiological and clinico-pathological data indicate considerable overlap between cerebrovascular disease (CVD) and Alzheimer's disease (AD) and suggest additive or synergistic effects of both pathologies on cognitive decline. The most frequent vascular pathologies in the aging brain and in AD are cerebral amyloid angiopathy and small vessel disease. Up to 84% of aged subjects show morphological substrates of CVD in addition to AD pathology. AD brains with minor CVD, similar to pure vascular dementia, show subcortical vascular lesions in about two-thirds, while in mixed type dementia (AD plus vascular dementia), multiple larger infarcts are more frequent. Small infarcts in patients with full-blown AD have no impact on cognitive decline but are overwhelmed by the severity of Alzheimer pathology, while in early stages of AD, cerebrovascular lesions may influence and promote cognitive impairment, lowering the threshold for clinically overt dementia. Further studies are warranted to elucidate the many hitherto unanswered questions regarding the overlap between CVD and AD as well as the impact of both CVD and AD pathologies on the development and progression of dementia.

PMID:
25385447
PMCID:
PMC4226890
DOI:
10.1186/s12916-014-0206-2
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

0 comments
How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for BioMed Central Icon for PubMed Central
    Loading ...
    Support Center