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Sample records for age-related neurodegenerative disease

  1. The impact of base excision DNA repair in age-related neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Leandro, Giovana S; Sykora, Peter; Bohr, Vilhelm A

    2015-06-01

    The aging process and several age-related neurodegenerative disorders have been linked to elevated levels of DNA damage induced by ROS and deficiency in DNA repair mechanisms. DNA damage induced by ROS is a byproduct of cellular respiration and accumulation of damage over time, is a fundamental aspect of a main theory of aging. Mitochondria have a pivotal role in generating cellular oxidative stress, and mitochondrial dysfunction has been associated with several diseases. DNA base excision repair is considered the major pathway for repair of oxidized bases in DNA both in the nuclei and in mitochondria, and in neurons this mechanism is particularly important because non-diving cells have limited back-up DNA repair mechanisms. An association between elevated oxidative stress and a decrease in BER is strongly related to the aging process and has special relevance in age-related neurodegenerative diseases. Here, we review the role of DNA repair in aging, focusing on the implications of the DNA base excision repair pathways and how alterations in expression of these DNA repair proteins are related to the aging process and to age-related neurodegenerative diseases.

  2. Neural stem cells could serve as a therapeutic material for age-related neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Suksuphew, Sarawut; Noisa, Parinya

    2015-03-26

    Progressively loss of neural and glial cells is the key event that leads to nervous system dysfunctions and diseases. Several neurodegenerative diseases, for instance Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, and Huntington's disease, are associated to aging and suggested to be a consequence of deficiency of neural stem cell pool in the affected brain regions. Endogenous neural stem cells exist throughout life and are found in specific niches of human brain. These neural stem cells are responsible for the regeneration of new neurons to restore, in the normal circumstance, the functions of the brain. Endogenous neural stem cells can be isolated, propagated, and, notably, differentiated to most cell types of the brain. On the other hand, other types of stem cells, such as mesenchymal stem cells, embryonic stem cells, and induced pluripotent stem cells can also serve as a source for neural stem cell production, that hold a great promise for regeneration of the brain. The replacement of neural stem cells, either endogenous or stem cell-derived neural stem cells, into impaired brain is highly expected as a possible therapeutic mean for neurodegenerative diseases. In this review, clinical features and current routinely treatments of age-related neurodegenerative diseases are documented. Noteworthy, we presented the promising evidence of neural stem cells and their derivatives in curing such diseases, together with the remaining challenges to achieve the best outcome for patients.

  3. Metabolomics of human brain aging and age-related neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Jové, Mariona; Portero-Otín, Manuel; Naudí, Alba; Ferrer, Isidre; Pamplona, Reinald

    2014-07-01

    Neurons in the mature human central nervous system (CNS) perform a wide range of motor, sensory, regulatory, behavioral, and cognitive functions. Such diverse functional output requires a great diversity of CNS neuronal and non-neuronal populations. Metabolomics encompasses the study of the complete set of metabolites/low-molecular-weight intermediates (metabolome), which are context-dependent and vary according to the physiology, developmental state, or pathologic state of the cell, tissue, organ, or organism. Therefore, the use of metabolomics can help to unravel the diversity-and to disclose the specificity-of metabolic traits and their alterations in the brain and in fluids such as cerebrospinal fluid and plasma, thus helping to uncover potential biomarkers of aging and neurodegenerative diseases. Here, we review the current applications of metabolomics in studies of CNS aging and certain age-related neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer disease, Parkinson disease, and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. Neurometabolomics will increase knowledge of the physiologic and pathologic functions of neural cells and will place the concept of selective neuronal vulnerability in a metabolic context.

  4. Niemann-Pick C disease gene mutations and age-related neurodegenerative disorders.

    PubMed

    Zech, Michael; Nübling, Georg; Castrop, Florian; Jochim, Angela; Schulte, Eva C; Mollenhauer, Brit; Lichtner, Peter; Peters, Annette; Gieger, Christian; Marquardt, Thorsten; Vanier, Marie T; Latour, Philippe; Klünemann, Hans; Trenkwalder, Claudia; Diehl-Schmid, Janine; Perneczky, Robert; Meitinger, Thomas; Oexle, Konrad; Haslinger, Bernhard; Lorenzl, Stefan; Winkelmann, Juliane

    2013-01-01

    Niemann-Pick type C (NPC) disease is a rare autosomal-recessively inherited lysosomal storage disorder caused by mutations in NPC1 (95%) or NPC2. Given the highly variable phenotype, diagnosis is challenging and particularly late-onset forms with predominantly neuropsychiatric presentations are likely underdiagnosed. Pathophysiologically, genetic alterations compromising the endosomal/lysosomal system are linked with age-related neurodegenerative disorders. We sought to examine a possible association of rare sequence variants in NPC1 and NPC2 with Parkinson's disease (PD), frontotemporal lobar degeneration (FTLD) and progressive supranuclear palsy (PSP), and to genetically determine the proportion of potentially misdiagnosed NPC patients in these neurodegenerative conditions. By means of high-resolution melting, we screened the coding regions of NPC1 and NPC2 for rare genetic variation in a homogenous German sample of patients clinically diagnosed with PD (n = 563), FTLD (n = 133) and PSP (n = 94), and 846 population-based controls. The frequencies of rare sequence variants in NPC1/2 did not differ significantly between patients and controls. Disease-associated NPC1/2 mutations were found in six PD patients (1.1%) and seven control subjects (0.8%), but not in FTLD or PSP. All rare variation was detected in the heterozygous state and no compound heterozygotes were observed. Our data do not support the hypothesis that rare NPC1/2 variants confer susceptibility for PD, FTLD, or PSP in the German population. Misdiagnosed NPC patients were not present in our samples. However, further assessment of NPC disease genes in age-related neurodegeneration is warranted. PMID:24386122

  5. What's on TV? Detecting age-related neurodegenerative eye disease using eye movement scanpaths

    PubMed Central

    Crabb, David P.; Smith, Nicholas D.; Zhu, Haogang

    2014-01-01

    Purpose: We test the hypothesis that age-related neurodegenerative eye disease can be detected by examining patterns of eye movement recorded whilst a person naturally watches a movie. Methods: Thirty-two elderly people with healthy vision (median age: 70, interquartile range [IQR] 64–75 years) and 44 patients with a clinical diagnosis of glaucoma (median age: 69, IQR 63–77 years) had standard vision examinations including automated perimetry. Disease severity was measured using a standard clinical measure (visual field mean deviation; MD). All study participants viewed three unmodified TV and film clips on a computer set up incorporating the Eyelink 1000 eyetracker (SR Research, Ontario, Canada). Eye movement scanpaths were plotted using novel methods that first filtered the data and then generated saccade density maps. Maps were then subjected to a feature extraction analysis using kernel principal component analysis (KPCA). Features from the KPCA were then classified using a standard machine based classifier trained and tested by a 10-fold cross validation which was repeated 100 times to estimate the confidence interval (CI) of classification sensitivity and specificity. Results: Patients had a range of disease severity from early to advanced (median [IQR] right eye and left eye MD was −7 [−13 to −5] dB and −9 [−15 to −4] dB, respectively). Average sensitivity for correctly identifying a glaucoma patient at a fixed specificity of 90% was 79% (95% CI: 58–86%). The area under the Receiver Operating Characteristic curve was 0.84 (95% CI: 0.82–0.87). Conclusions: Huge data from scanpaths of eye movements recorded whilst people freely watch TV type films can be processed into maps that contain a signature of vision loss. In this proof of principle study we have demonstrated that a group of patients with age-related neurodegenerative eye disease can be reasonably well separated from a group of healthy peers by considering these eye movement

  6. [Progress in induced pluripotent stem cell research for age-related neurodegenerative diseases].

    PubMed

    Ito, Daisuke; Yagi, Takuya; Suzuki, Norihiro

    2013-03-01

    In 2006, Takahashi et al. established a method for reprogramming somatic cells by introducing definite transcription factors, which enabled the generation of induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) with pluripotency comparable to that of embryonic stem cells. In turn, it has become possible to use these iPSCs for producing various tissues needed for the treatment of neurodegenerative disorders, which have been difficult to obtain from living bodies. This advancement is expected to bring forth rapid progress in the clarification of mechanisms underlying the diseases and discovery of new innovative drugs and lead to rapid progress in regenerative medicine. In recent years, recapitulation and analysis of disease conditions using iPSCs derived from the patients themselves have been reported, and remarkable advances have been made, even for late-onset neurodegenerative disorders. These findings show that the phenotypes of late-onset neurodegenerative disorders can be recapitulated in iPSC-derived neuronal cells, which are reflected the early developmental stages, indicating cellular abnormalities exist from the prenatal period, despite the late onset diseases. In this review, we summarize the state of iPSCs research in the context of neurodegenerative disorders, discuss the possible ways for understanding the mechanisms underlying neurodegenerative disorders and discovering new drugs, and describe some other aspects of regenerative medicine.

  7. β-amyloidopathy in the Pathogenesis of Age-Related Macular Degeneration in Correlation with Neurodegenerative Diseases.

    PubMed

    Ermilov, Victor V; Nesterova, Alla A

    2016-01-01

    Involvement of new biotechnology and genetic engineering methods to the study of the aging organism allowed to select a group of neurodegenerative diseases (NDD) which have a similar mechanism of pathogenesis including pathological processes of protein aggregation and its deposition in the structures of nerve tissue. The development of eye and brain from one embryonic germ layer, community of ethiopathogenetic and morphological manifestations of age-related macular degeneration (AMD) and Alzheimer's disease (AD), a common pathway of β-amyloid precursor protein (APP) are associated with the pathological aggregation of fibrillar β-amyloid (Aβ) protein and the development of β-amyloidopathy in structural elements of the eye and the brain. The review demonstrates the keynote of AMD and AD pathogenesis is β-amyloidopathy that is a manifestation of proteinopathy leading to cytotoxicity, neurodegeneration and the development of pathological apoptosis activated by the formation of intracellular Aβ. This view on the problem predetermines the development of new strategies for the creating of ophthalmogeriatric and neuroprotective drugs affecting the pathogenesis and including all stages of Aβ formation and pathological aggregation. PMID:26427402

  8. Curcumin and neurodegenerative diseases

    PubMed Central

    Monroy, Adriana; Lithgow, Gordon J.; Alavez, Silvestre

    2013-01-01

    Over the last ten years curcumin has been reported to be effective against a wide variety of diseases and is characterized as having anti-carcinogenic, hepatoprotective, thrombosuppressive, cardioprotective, anti-arthritic, and anti-infectious properties. Recent studies performed in both vertebrate and invertebrate models have been conducted to determine whether curcumin was also neuroprotective. The efficacy of curcumin in several pre-clinical trials for neurodegenerative diseases has created considerable excitement mainly due to its lack of toxicity and low cost. This suggests that curcumin could be a worthy candidate for nutraceutical intervention. Since aging is a common risk factor for neurodegenerative diseases, it is possible that some compounds that target aging mechanisms could also prevent these kinds of diseases. One potential mechanism to explain several of the general health benefits associated with curcumin is that it may prevent aging-associated changes in cellular proteins that lead to protein insolubility and aggregation. This loss in protein homeostasis is associated with several age-related diseases. Recently, curcumin has been found to help maintain protein homeostasis and extend lifespan in the model invertebrate Caenorhabditis elegans. Here, we review the evidence from several animal models that curcumin improves healthspan by preventing or delaying the onset of various neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:23303664

  9. Meditation and neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Newberg, Andrew B; Serruya, Mijail; Wintering, Nancy; Moss, Aleezé Sattar; Reibel, Diane; Monti, Daniel A

    2014-01-01

    Neurodegenerative diseases pose a significant problem for the healthcare system, doctors, and patients. With an aging population, more and more individuals are developing neurodegenerative diseases and there are few treatment options at the present time. Meditation techniques present an interesting potential adjuvant treatment for patients with neurodegenerative diseases and have the advantage of being inexpensive, and easy to teach and perform. There is increasing research evidence to support the application of meditation techniques to help improve cognition and memory in patients with neurodegenerative diseases. This review discusses the current data on meditation, memory, and attention, and the potential applications of meditation techniques in patients with neurodegenerative diseases.

  10. The effect of time-dependent macromolecular crowding on the kinetics of protein aggregation: a simple model for the onset of age-related neurodegenerative disease

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Minton, Allen

    2014-08-01

    A linear increase in the concentration of "inert" macromolecules with time is incorporated into simple excluded volume models for protein condensation or fibrillation. Such models predict a long latent period during which no significant amount of protein aggregates, followed by a steep increase in the total amount of aggregate. The elapsed time at which these models predict half-conversion of model protein to aggregate varies by less than a factor of two when the intrinsic rate constant for condensation or fibril growth of the protein is varied over many orders of magnitude. It is suggested that this concept can explain why the symptoms of neurodegenerative diseases associated with the aggregation of very different proteins and peptides appear at approximately the same advanced age in humans.

  11. Optogenetics for neurodegenerative diseases

    PubMed Central

    Vann, Kiara T; Xiong, Zhi-Gang

    2016-01-01

    Neurodegenerative diseases are devastating conditions that lead to progressive degeneration of neurons. Neurodegeneration may result in ataxia, dementia, and muscle atrophies, etc. Despite enormous research efforts that have been made, there is lack of effective therapeutic interventions for most of these diseases. Optogenetics is a recently developed novel technique that combines optics and genetics to modulate the activity of specific neurons. Optogenetics has been implemented in various studies including neuropsychiatric disorders and neurodegenerative diseases. This review focuses on the recent advance in using this technique for the studies of common neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:27186317

  12. Driving and neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Uc, Ergun Y; Rizzo, Matthew

    2008-09-01

    The proportion of elderly people in the general population is rising, resulting in greater numbers of drivers with neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer's disease and Parkinson's disease. These neurodegenerative disorders impair cognition, visual perception, and motor function, leading to reduced driver fitness and greater crash risk. Yet neither medical diagnosis nor age alone is reliable enough to predict driver safety or crashes or to revoke the driving privileges of these individuals. Driving research utilizes tools such as questionnaires about driving habits and history, driving simulators, standardized road tests utilizing instrumented vehicles, and state driving records. Research challenges include outlining the evolution of driving safety, understanding the mechanisms of driving impairment, and developing a reliable and efficient standardized test battery for prediction of driver safety in neurodegenerative disorders. This information will enable healthcare providers to advise their patients with neurodegenerative disorders with more certainty, affect policy, and help develop rehabilitative measures for driving. PMID:18713573

  13. Neuronal histaminergic system in aging and age-related neurodegenerative disorders.

    PubMed

    Shan, Ling; Swaab, Dick F; Bao, Ai-Min

    2013-07-01

    The neuronal histaminergic system is involved in many physiological functions and is severely affected in age-related neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson's disease (PD) and Alzheimer's disease (AD). The properties of the neuronal histaminergic system in experimental animals and the alterations observed in postmortem brain material of PD or AD patients are reviewed. The production of neuronal histamine shows diurnal fluctuations in control subjects who had no neuropsychiatric disorders, while this fluctuation was strongly altered in patients with neurodegenerative diseases, including PD and AD. In addition, different alterations shown as expression levels of histidine decarboxylase (the key enzyme for histamine production), histamine-methyltransferase (the histamine deactivating enzyme), and histamine receptors (H(1-4)R) were found in various neurodegenerative disorders. Discrepancies between results from animal models and postmortem human brain material studies have made clear that the validation of animal models is absolutely necessary and that studies on patients and human postmortem material are essential to understand the changes of neuronal histaminergic system occurring in neuropsychiatric disorders.

  14. Sleep in Neurodegenerative Diseases.

    PubMed

    Iranzo, Alex

    2016-03-01

    Disorders of sleep are an integral part of neurodegenerative diseases and include insomnia, sleep-wake cycle disruption, excessive daytime sleepiness that may be manifested as persistent somnolence or sudden onset of sleep episodes, obstructive and central sleep apnea, rapid eye movement sleep behavior disorder, and restless legs syndrome. The origin of these sleep disorders is multifactorial including degeneration of the brain areas that modulate sleep, the symptoms of the disease, and the effect of medications. Treatment of sleep disorders in patients with neurodegenerative diseases should be individualized and includes behavioral therapy, sleep hygiene, bright light therapy, melatonin, hypnotics, waking-promoting agents, and continuous positive airway pressure. PMID:26972029

  15. Glutamate and Neurodegenerative Disease

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schaeffer, Eric; Duplantier, Allen

    As the main excitatory neurotransmitter in the mammalian central nervous system, glutamate is critically involved in most aspects of CNS function. Given this critical role, it is not surprising that glutamatergic dysfunction is associated with many CNS disorders. In this chapter, we review the literature that links aberrant glutamate neurotransmission with CNS pathology, with a focus on neurodegenerative diseases. The biology and pharmacology of the various glutamate receptor families are discussed, along with data which links these receptors with neurodegenerative conditions. In addition, we review progress that has been made in developing small molecule modulators of glutamate receptors and transporters, and describe how these compounds have helped us understand the complex pharmacology of glutamate in normal CNS function, as well as their potential for the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases.

  16. Ceruloplasmin in neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Vassiliev, Vadim; Harris, Zena Leah; Zatta, Paolo

    2005-11-01

    For decades, abnormalities in ceruloplasmin (Cp) synthesis have been associated with neurodegenerative disease. From the early observation that low circulating serum ceruloplasmin levels served as a marker for Wilson's disease to the recent characterization of a neurodegenerative disorder associated with a complete lack of serum ceruloplasmin, the link between Cp and neuropathology has strengthened. The mechanisms associated with these different central nervous system abnormalities are very distinct. In Wilson's disease, a defect in the P-type ATPase results in abnormal hepatic copper accumulation that eventually leaks into the circulation and is abnormally deposited in the brain. In this case, copper deposition results in the neurodegenerative phenotype observed. Patients with autosomal recessive condition, aceruloplasminemia, lack the ferroxidase activity inherent to the multi-copper oxidase ceruloplasmin and develop abnormal iron accumulation within the central nervous system. In the following review ceruloplasmin gene expression, structure and function will be presented and the role of ceruloplasmin in iron metabolism will be discussed. The molecular events underlying the different forms of neurodegeneration observed will be presented. Understanding the role of ceruloplasmin within the central nervous system is fundamental to further our understanding of the pathology observed. Is the ferroxidase function more essential than the antioxidant role? Does Cp help maintain nitrosothiol stores or does it oxidize critical brain substrates? The answers to these questions hold the promise for the treatment of devastating neurodegenerative conditions such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases. It is essential to further elucidate the mechanism of the neuronal injury associated with these disorders.

  17. Glycoproteomics in Neurodegenerative Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Hwang, Hyejin; Zhang, Jianpeng; Chung, Kathryn A.; Leverenz, James B.; Zabetian, Cyrus P.; Peskind, Elaine R.; Jankovic, Joseph; Su, Zhen; Hancock, Aneeka M.; Pan, Catherine; Montine, Thomas J.; Pan, Sheng; Nutt, John; Albin, Roger; Gearing, Marla; Beyer, Richard P.; Shi, Min; Zhang, Jing

    2009-01-01

    Protein glycosylation regulates protein function and cellular distribution. Additionally, aberrant protein glycosylations have been recognized to play major roles in human disorders, including neurodegenerative diseases. Glycoproteomics, a branch of proteomics that catalogs and quantifies glycoproteins, provides a powerful means to systematically profile the glycopeptides or glycoproteins of a complex mixture that are highly enriched in body fluids, and therefore, carry great potential to be diagnostic and/or prognostic markers. Application of this mass spectrometry-based technology to the study of neurodegenerative disorders (e.g., Alzheimer's disease and Parkinson's disease) is relatively new, and is expected to provide insight into the biochemical pathogenesis of neurodegeneration, as well as biomarker discovery. In this review, we have summarized the current understanding of glycoproteins in biology and neurodegenerative disease, and have discussed existing proteomic technologies that are utilized to characterize glycoproteins. Some of the ongoing studies, where glycoproteins isolated from cerebrospinal fluid and human brain are being characterized in Parkinson's disease at different stages versus controls, are presented, along with future applications of targeted validation of brain specific glycoproteins in body fluids. PMID:19358229

  18. Aquaporins and Neurodegenerative Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Foglio, Eleonora; Rodella, Luigi Fabrizio

    2010-01-01

    Aquaporins (AQPs) are a family of widely distributed membrane-inserted water channel proteins providing a pathway for osmotically-driven water, glycerol, urea or ions transport through cell membranes and mechanisms to control particular aspects of homeostasis. Beside their physiological expression patterns in Central Nervous System (CNS), it is conceivable that AQPs are also abnormally expressed in some pathological conditions interesting CNS (e.g. neurodegenerative diseases) in which preservation of brain homeostasis is at risk. The purpose of this review was to take in consideration those neurodegenerative diseases in whose pathogenetic processes it was possible to hypothesize some alterations in CNS AQPs expression or modulation leading to damages of brain water homeostasis. PMID:21119882

  19. Nutrition and age-related eye diseases

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Vision loss among the elderly is an important health problem. Approximately one person in three has some form of vision-reducing eye disease by the age of 65 [1]. Age-related cataract, age-related macular degeneration (AMD), diabetic retinopathy and glaucoma are the major diseases resulting in visu...

  20. Stem cells and neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Hou, LingLing; Hong, Tao

    2008-04-01

    Neurodegenerative diseases are characterized by the neurodegenerative changes or apoptosis of neurons involved in networks, which are important to specific physiological functions. With the development of old-aging society, the incidence of neurodegenerative diseases is on the increase. However, it is difficult to diagnose for most of neurodegenerative diseases. At present, there are too few effective therapies. Advances in stem cell biology have raised the hope and possibility for the therapy of neurodegenerative diseases. Recently, stem cells have been widely attempted to treat neurodegenerative diseases of animal model. Here we review the progress and prospects of various stem cells, including embryonic stem cells, mesenchymal stem cell and neural stem cells and so on, for the treatments of neurodegenerative diseases, such as Parkinson's disease, Alzheimer's disease, Huntington' disease and Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis/Lou Gehrig's disease.

  1. Improvement of neuronal bioenergetics by neurosteroids: implications for age-related neurodegenerative disorders.

    PubMed

    Grimm, Amandine; Schmitt, Karen; Lang, Undine E; Mensah-Nyagan, Ayikoe Guy; Eckert, Anne

    2014-12-01

    The brain has high energy requirements to maintain neuronal activity. Consequently impaired mitochondrial function will lead to disease. Normal aging is associated with several alterations in neurosteroid production and secretion. Decreases in neurosteroid levels might contribute to brain aging and loss of important nervous functions, such as memory. Up to now, extensive studies only focused on estradiol as a promising neurosteroid compound that is able to ameliorate cellular bioenergetics, while the effects of other steroids on brain mitochondria are poorly understood or not investigated at all. Thus, we aimed to characterize the bioenergetic modulating profile of a panel of seven structurally diverse neurosteroids (progesterone, estradiol, estrone, testosterone, 3α-androstanediol, DHEA and allopregnanolone), known to be involved in brain function regulation. Of note, most of the steroids tested were able to improve bioenergetic activity in neuronal cells by increasing ATP levels, mitochondrial membrane potential and basal mitochondrial respiration. In parallel, they modulated redox homeostasis by increasing antioxidant activity, probably as a compensatory mechanism to a slight enhancement of ROS which might result from the rise in oxygen consumption. Thereby, neurosteroids appeared to act via their corresponding receptors and exhibited specific bioenergetic profiles. Taken together, our results indicate that the ability to boost mitochondria is not unique to estradiol, but seems to be a rather common mechanism of different steroids in the brain. Thus, neurosteroids may act upon neuronal bioenergetics in a delicate balance and an age-related steroid disturbance might be involved in mitochondrial dysfunction underlying neurodegenerative disorders. PMID:25281013

  2. Defining Alzheimer as a common age-related neurodegenerative process not inevitably leading to dementia.

    PubMed

    Ferrer, Isidro

    2012-04-01

    Since the description by Alois Alzheimer, more than 50 years have passed during which senile dementia and pre-senile dementia have been considered Alzheimer disease (AD) on the basis of their common neuropathological and clinical manifestations. AD now covers pre-senile dementia, senile dementia, mild cognitive impairment and pre-clinical AD, all of them within the context of AD-related pathology. However, there is still a gray area between normal aging with AD-related pathology and AD. Here it is proposed that Alzheimer (or alzheimer) is an age-related neurodegenerative process distinguished from normal aging by the presence of senile plaques and neurofibrillary tangles. Alzheimer affects about 80% of individuals aged 65 years but dementia only occurs in a small percentage of individuals at this age; prevalence of dementia in Alzheimer increases to 25% in individuals aged 80 years. The concepts derived from the β-amyloid hypothesis support β-amyloid as a conductor in the pathogenesis of familial AD and as a prodding factor in sporadic AD. Moreover, seeding of β-amyloid and truncated tau explains incorporation, enhancement and perpetuation of AD-related changes. Therefore, the earliest Alzheimer changes confined to selected regions are the first grounds and the main risk factor for developing dementia. The term Alzheimer embraces this assumption and likens its meaning to other degenerative biological processes, such as atherosclerosis, that may eventually progress to disease. In this context, the first stages of Alzheimer should be considered as primary targets of therapeutic intervention in order to prevent progression to diseased states.

  3. DNA damage in neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Coppedè, Fabio; Migliore, Lucia

    2015-06-01

    Following the observation of increased oxidative DNA damage in nuclear and mitochondrial DNA extracted from post-mortem brain regions of patients affected by neurodegenerative diseases, the last years of the previous century and the first decade of the present one have been largely dedicated to the search of markers of DNA damage in neuronal samples and peripheral tissues of patients in early, intermediate or late stages of neurodegeneration. Those studies allowed to demonstrate that oxidative DNA damage is one of the earliest detectable events in neurodegeneration, but also revealed cytogenetic damage in neurodegenerative conditions, such as for example a tendency towards chromosome 21 malsegregation in Alzheimer's disease. As it happens for many neurodegenerative risk factors the question of whether DNA damage is cause or consequence of the neurodegenerative process is still open, and probably both is true. The research interest in markers of oxidative stress was shifted, in recent years, towards the search of epigenetic biomarkers of neurodegenerative disorders, following the accumulating evidence of a substantial contribution of epigenetic mechanisms to learning, memory processes, behavioural disorders and neurodegeneration. Increasing evidence is however linking DNA damage and repair with epigenetic phenomena, thereby opening the way to a very attractive and timely research topic in neurodegenerative diseases. We will address those issues in the context of Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, and Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, which represent three of the most common neurodegenerative pathologies in humans. PMID:26255941

  4. Amyloidosis in Retinal Neurodegenerative Diseases.

    PubMed

    Masuzzo, Ambra; Dinet, Virginie; Cavanagh, Chelsea; Mascarelli, Frederic; Krantic, Slavica

    2016-01-01

    As a part of the central nervous system, the retina may reflect both physiological processes and abnormalities related to pathologies that affect the brain. Amyloidosis due to the accumulation of amyloid-beta (Aβ) was initially regarded as a specific and exclusive characteristic of neurodegenerative alterations seen in the brain of Alzheimer's disease (AD) patients. More recently, it was discovered that amyloidosis-related alterations, similar to those seen in the brain of Alzheimer's patients, also occur in the retina. Remarkably, these alterations were identified not only in primary retinal pathologies, such as age-related macular degeneration (AMD) and glaucoma, but also in the retinas of Alzheimer's patients. In this review, we first briefly discuss the biogenesis of Aβ, a peptide involved in amyloidosis. We then discuss some pathological aspects (synaptic dysfunction, mitochondrial failure, glial activation, and vascular abnormalities) related to the neurotoxic effects of Aβ. We finally highlight common features shared by AD, AMD, and glaucoma in the context of Aβ amyloidosis and further discuss why the retina, due to the transparency of the eye, can be considered as a "window" to the brain. PMID:27551275

  5. Amyloidosis in Retinal Neurodegenerative Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Masuzzo, Ambra; Dinet, Virginie; Cavanagh, Chelsea; Mascarelli, Frederic; Krantic, Slavica

    2016-01-01

    As a part of the central nervous system, the retina may reflect both physiological processes and abnormalities related to pathologies that affect the brain. Amyloidosis due to the accumulation of amyloid-beta (Aβ) was initially regarded as a specific and exclusive characteristic of neurodegenerative alterations seen in the brain of Alzheimer’s disease (AD) patients. More recently, it was discovered that amyloidosis-related alterations, similar to those seen in the brain of Alzheimer’s patients, also occur in the retina. Remarkably, these alterations were identified not only in primary retinal pathologies, such as age-related macular degeneration (AMD) and glaucoma, but also in the retinas of Alzheimer’s patients. In this review, we first briefly discuss the biogenesis of Aβ, a peptide involved in amyloidosis. We then discuss some pathological aspects (synaptic dysfunction, mitochondrial failure, glial activation, and vascular abnormalities) related to the neurotoxic effects of Aβ. We finally highlight common features shared by AD, AMD, and glaucoma in the context of Aβ amyloidosis and further discuss why the retina, due to the transparency of the eye, can be considered as a “window” to the brain. PMID:27551275

  6. Mitochondrial Dysfunction in Neurodegenerative Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Johri, Ashu

    2012-01-01

    Neurodegenerative diseases are a large group of disabling disorders of the nervous system, characterized by the relative selective death of neuronal subtypes. In most cases, there is overwhelming evidence of impaired mitochondrial function as a causative factor in these diseases. More recently, evidence has emerged for impaired mitochondrial dynamics (shape, size, fission-fusion, distribution, movement etc.) in neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson's disease, Huntington's disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, and Alzheimer's disease. Here, we provide a concise overview of the major findings in recent years highlighting the importance of healthy mitochondria for a healthy neuron. PMID:22700435

  7. Translational strategies in aging and age-related disease.

    PubMed

    Armanios, Mary; de Cabo, Rafael; Mannick, Joan; Partridge, Linda; van Deursen, Jan; Villeda, Saul

    2015-12-01

    Aging is a risk factor for several of the world's most prevalent diseases, including neurodegenerative disorders, cancer, cardiovascular disease and metabolic disease. Although our understanding of the molecular pathways that contribute to the aging process and age-related disease is progressing through the use of model organisms, how to apply this knowledge in the clinic is less clear. In September, Nature Medicine, in collaboration with the Volkswagen Foundation, hosted a conference at the beautiful Herrenhausen Palace in Hannover, Germany with the goal of broadening our understanding of the aging process and its meaning as a 'risk factor' in disease. Here, several of the speakers at that conference answer questions posed by Nature Medicine.

  8. Translational strategies in aging and age-related disease.

    PubMed

    Armanios, Mary; de Cabo, Rafael; Mannick, Joan; Partridge, Linda; van Deursen, Jan; Villeda, Saul

    2015-12-01

    Aging is a risk factor for several of the world's most prevalent diseases, including neurodegenerative disorders, cancer, cardiovascular disease and metabolic disease. Although our understanding of the molecular pathways that contribute to the aging process and age-related disease is progressing through the use of model organisms, how to apply this knowledge in the clinic is less clear. In September, Nature Medicine, in collaboration with the Volkswagen Foundation, hosted a conference at the beautiful Herrenhausen Palace in Hannover, Germany with the goal of broadening our understanding of the aging process and its meaning as a 'risk factor' in disease. Here, several of the speakers at that conference answer questions posed by Nature Medicine. PMID:26646495

  9. Depressive symptoms in neurodegenerative diseases

    PubMed Central

    Baquero, Miquel; Martín, Nuria

    2015-01-01

    Depressive symptoms are very common in chronic conditions. This is true so for neurodegenerative diseases. A number of patients with cognitive decline and dementia due to Alzheimer’s disease and related conditions like Parkinson’s disease, Lewy body disease, vascular dementia, frontotemporal degeneration amongst other entities, experience depressive symptoms in greater or lesser grade at some point during the course of the illness. Depressive symptoms have a particular significance in neurological disorders, specially in neurodegenerative diseases, because brain, mind, behavior and mood relationship. A number of patients may develop depressive symptoms in early stages of the neurologic disease, occurring without clear presence of cognitive decline with only mild cognitive deterioration. Classically, depression constitutes a reliable diagnostic challenge in this setting. However, actually we can recognize and evaluate depressive, cognitive or motor symptoms of neurodegenerative disease in order to establish their clinical significance and to plan some therapeutic strategies. Depressive symptoms can appear also lately, when the neurodegenerative disease is fully developed. The presence of depression and other neuropsychiatric symptoms have a negative impact on the quality-of-life of patients and caregivers. Besides, patients with depressive symptoms also tend to further decrease function and reduce cognitive abilities and also uses to present more affected clinical status, compared with patients without depression. Depressive symptoms are treatable. Early detection of depressive symptoms is very important in patients with neurodegenerative disorders, in order to initiate the most adequate treatment. We review in this paper the main neurodegenerative diseases, focusing in depressive symptoms of each other entities and current recommendations of management and treatment. PMID:26301229

  10. Medical bioremediation of age-related diseases

    PubMed Central

    Mathieu, Jacques M; Schloendorn, John; Rittmann, Bruce E; Alvarez, Pedro JJ

    2009-01-01

    Catabolic insufficiency in humans leads to the gradual accumulation of a number of pathogenic compounds associated with age-related diseases, including atherosclerosis, Alzheimer's disease, and macular degeneration. Removal of these compounds is a widely researched therapeutic option, but the use of antibodies and endogenous human enzymes has failed to produce effective treatments, and may pose risks to cellular homeostasis. Another alternative is "medical bioremediation," the use of microbial enzymes to augment missing catabolic functions. The microbial genetic diversity in most natural environments provides a resource that can be mined for enzymes capable of degrading just about any energy-rich organic compound. This review discusses targets for biodegradation, the identification of candidate microbial enzymes, and enzyme-delivery methods. PMID:19358742

  11. MicroRNAs in age-related diseases.

    PubMed

    Dimmeler, Stefanie; Nicotera, Pierluigi

    2013-02-01

    Aging is a complex process that is linked to an increased incidence of major diseases such as cardiovascular and neurodegenerative disease, but also cancer and immune disorders. MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are small non-coding RNAs, which post-transcriptionally control gene expression by inhibiting translation or inducing degradation of targeted mRNAs. MiRNAs target up to hundreds of mRNAs, thereby modulating gene expression patterns. Many miRNAs appear to be dysregulated during cellular senescence, aging and disease. However, only few miRNAs have been so far linked to age-related changes in cellular and organ functions. The present article will discuss these findings, specifically focusing on the cardiovascular and neurological systems.

  12. Omental transplantation for neurodegenerative diseases

    PubMed Central

    Rafael, Hernando

    2014-01-01

    Up to date, almost all researchers consider that there is still no effective therapy for neurodegenerative diseases (NDDs) and therefore, these diseases are incurable. However, since May 1998, we know that a progressive ischemia in the medial temporal lobes and subcommissural regions can cause Alzheimer’s disease; because, in contrast to this, its revascularization by means of omental tissue can cure or improve this disease. Likewise we observed that the aging process, Huntington’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, and Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis; all of them are of ischemic origin caused by cerebral atherosclerosis, associated with vascular anomalies and/or environmental chemicals. On the contrary, an omental transplantation on the affected zone can stop and improve these diseases. For these reasons, I believe that NDDs, are wrongly classified as neurodegenerative disorders. PMID:25232510

  13. Metal imaging in neurodegenerative diseases

    PubMed Central

    Bourassa, Megan W.

    2014-01-01

    Metal ions are known to play an important role in many neurodegenerative diseases including Alzheimer’s disease (AD), Parkinson’s disease (PD), amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), and prion diseases. In these diseases, aberrant metal binding or improper regulation of redox active metal ions can induce oxidative stress by producing cytotoxic reactive oxygen species (ROS). Altered metal homeostasis is also frequently seen in the diseased state. As a result, the imaging of metals in intact biological cells and tissues has been very important for understanding the role of metals in neurodegenerative diseases. A wide range of imaging techniques have been utilized, including X-ray fluorescence microscopy (XFM), particle induced X-ray emission (PIXE), energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDS), laser ablation inductively coupled mass spectrometry (LA-ICP-MS), and secondary ion mass spectrometry (SIMS), all of which allow for the imaging of metals in biological specimens with high spatial resolution and detection sensitivity. These techniques represent unique tools for advancing the understanding of the disease mechanisms and for identifying possible targets for developing treatments. In this review, we will highlight the advances in neurodegenerative disease research facilitated by metal imaging techniques. PMID:22797194

  14. Nut consumption and age-related disease.

    PubMed

    Grosso, G; Estruch, R

    2016-02-01

    Current knowledge on the effects of nut consumption on human health has rapidly increased in recent years and it now appears that nuts may play a role in the prevention of chronic age-related diseases. Frequent nut consumption has been associated with better metabolic status, decreased body weight as well as lower body weight gain over time and thus reduce the risk of obesity. The effect of nuts on glucose metabolism, blood lipids, and blood pressure is still controversial. However, significant decreased cardiovascular risk has been reported in a number of observational and clinical intervention studies. Thus, findings from cohort studies show that increased nut consumption is associated with a reduced risk of cardiovascular disease and mortality (especially that due to cardiovascular-related causes). Similarly, nut consumption has been also associated with reduced risk of certain cancers, such as colorectal, endometrial, and pancreatic neoplasms. Evidence regarding nut consumption and neurological or psychiatric disorders is scarce, but a number of studies suggest significant protective effects against depression, mild cognitive disorders and Alzheimer's disease. The underlying mechanisms appear to include antioxidant and anti-inflammatory actions, particularly related to their mono- and polyunsaturated fatty acids (MUFA and PUFA, as well as vitamin and polyphenol content). MUFA have been demonstrated to improve pancreatic beta-cell function and regulation of postprandial glycemia and insulin sensitivity. PUFA may act on the central nervous system protecting neuronal and cell-signaling function and maintenance. The fiber and mineral content of nuts may also confer health benefits. Nuts therefore show promise as useful adjuvants to prevent, delay or ameliorate a number of chronic conditions in older people. Their association with decreased mortality suggests a potential in reducing disease burden, including cardiovascular disease, cancer, and cognitive impairments

  15. Nut consumption and age-related disease.

    PubMed

    Grosso, G; Estruch, R

    2016-02-01

    Current knowledge on the effects of nut consumption on human health has rapidly increased in recent years and it now appears that nuts may play a role in the prevention of chronic age-related diseases. Frequent nut consumption has been associated with better metabolic status, decreased body weight as well as lower body weight gain over time and thus reduce the risk of obesity. The effect of nuts on glucose metabolism, blood lipids, and blood pressure is still controversial. However, significant decreased cardiovascular risk has been reported in a number of observational and clinical intervention studies. Thus, findings from cohort studies show that increased nut consumption is associated with a reduced risk of cardiovascular disease and mortality (especially that due to cardiovascular-related causes). Similarly, nut consumption has been also associated with reduced risk of certain cancers, such as colorectal, endometrial, and pancreatic neoplasms. Evidence regarding nut consumption and neurological or psychiatric disorders is scarce, but a number of studies suggest significant protective effects against depression, mild cognitive disorders and Alzheimer's disease. The underlying mechanisms appear to include antioxidant and anti-inflammatory actions, particularly related to their mono- and polyunsaturated fatty acids (MUFA and PUFA, as well as vitamin and polyphenol content). MUFA have been demonstrated to improve pancreatic beta-cell function and regulation of postprandial glycemia and insulin sensitivity. PUFA may act on the central nervous system protecting neuronal and cell-signaling function and maintenance. The fiber and mineral content of nuts may also confer health benefits. Nuts therefore show promise as useful adjuvants to prevent, delay or ameliorate a number of chronic conditions in older people. Their association with decreased mortality suggests a potential in reducing disease burden, including cardiovascular disease, cancer, and cognitive impairments.

  16. Polyphenols: Multipotent Therapeutic Agents in Neurodegenerative Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Bhullar, Khushwant S.; Rupasinghe, H. P. Vasantha

    2013-01-01

    Aging leads to numerous transitions in brain physiology including synaptic dysfunction and disturbances in cognition and memory. With a few clinically relevant drugs, a substantial portion of aging population at risk for age-related neurodegenerative disorders require nutritional intervention. Dietary intake of polyphenols is known to attenuate oxidative stress and reduce the risk for related neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's disease (AD), stroke, multiple sclerosis (MS), Parkinson's disease (PD), and Huntington's disease (HD). Polyphenols exhibit strong potential to address the etiology of neurological disorders as they attenuate their complex physiology by modulating several therapeutic targets at once. Firstly, we review the advances in the therapeutic role of polyphenols in cell and animal models of AD, PD, MS, and HD and activation of drug targets for controlling pathological manifestations. Secondly, we present principle pathways in which polyphenol intake translates into therapeutic outcomes. In particular, signaling pathways like PPAR, Nrf2, STAT, HIF, and MAPK along with modulation of immune response by polyphenols are discussed. Although current polyphenol researches have limited impact on clinical practice, they have strong evidence and testable hypothesis to contribute clinical advances and drug discovery towards age-related neurological disorders. PMID:23840922

  17. Aging, frailty and age-related diseases.

    PubMed

    Fulop, T; Larbi, A; Witkowski, J M; McElhaney, J; Loeb, M; Mitnitski, A; Pawelec, G

    2010-10-01

    The concept of frailty as a medically distinct syndrome has evolved based on the clinical experience of geriatricians and is clinically well recognizable. Frailty is a nonspecific state of vulnerability, which reflects multisystem physiological change. These changes underlying frailty do not always achieve disease status, so some people, usually very elderly, are frail without a specific life threatening illness. Current thinking is that not only physical but also psychological, cognitive and social factors contribute to this syndrome and need to be taken into account in its definition and treatment. Together, these signs and symptoms seem to reflect a reduced functional reserve and consequent decrease in adaptation (resilience) to any sort of stressor and perhaps even in the absence of extrinsic stressors. The overall consequence is that frail elderly are at higher risk for accelerated physical and cognitive decline, disability and death. All these characteristics associated with frailty can easily be applied to the definition and characterization of the aging process per se and there is little consensus in the literature concerning the physiological/biological pathways associated with or determining frailty. It is probably true to say that a consensus view would implicate heightened chronic systemic inflammation as a major contributor to frailty. This review will focus on the relationship between aging, frailty and age-related diseases, and will highlight possible interventions to reduce the occurrence and effects of frailty in elderly people. PMID:20559726

  18. Drosophila Models of Neurodegenerative Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Lu, Bingwei; Vogel, Hannes

    2011-01-01

    Neurodegenerative diseases are progressive disorders of the nervous system that affect specific cellular populations in the central and peripheral nervous systems. Although most cases are sporadic, genes associated with familial cases have been identified, thus enabling the development of animal models. Invertebrates such as Drosophila have recently emerged as model systems for studying mechanisms of neurodegeneration in several major neurodegenerative diseases. These models are also excellent in vivo systems for the testing of therapeutic compounds. Genetic studies using these animal models have provided novel insights into the disease process. We anticipate that further exploration of the animal models will further our understanding of mechanisms of neurodegeneration as well as facilitate the development of rational treatments for debilitating degenerative diseases. PMID:18842101

  19. Biology of Mitochondria in Neurodegenerative Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Martin, Lee J.

    2012-01-01

    Alzheimer's disease (AD), Parkinson's disease (PD), and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) are the most common human adult-onset neurodegenerative diseases. They are characterized by prominent age-related neurodegeneration in selectively vulnerable neural systems. Some forms of AD, PD, and ALS are inherited, and genes causing these diseases have been identified. Nevertheless, the mechanisms of the neuronal degeneration in these familial diseases, and in the more common idiopathic (sporadic) diseases, are unresolved. Genetic, biochemical, and morphological analyses of human AD, PD, and ALS, as well as their cell and animal models, reveal that mitochondria could have roles in this neurodegeneration. The varied functions and properties of mitochondria might render subsets of selectively vulnerable neurons intrinsically susceptible to cellular aging and stress and the overlying genetic variations. In AD, alterations in enzymes involved in oxidative phosphorylation, oxidative damage, and mitochondrial binding of Aβ and amyloid precursor protein have been reported. In PD, mutations in mitochondrial proteins have been identified and mitochondrial DNA mutations have been found in neurons in the substantia nigra. In ALS, changes occur in mitochondrial respiratory chain enzymes and mitochondrial programmed cell death proteins. Transgenic mouse models of human neurodegenerative disease are beginning to reveal possible principles governing the biology of selective neuronal vulnerability that implicate mitochondria and the mitochondrial permeability transition pore. This chapter reviews several aspects of mitochondrial biology and how mitochondrial pathobiology might contribute to the mechanisms of neurodegeneration in AD, PD, and ALS. PMID:22482456

  20. Glutathione transferases and neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Mazzetti, Anna Paola; Fiorile, Maria Carmela; Primavera, Alessandra; Lo Bello, Mario

    2015-03-01

    There is substantial agreement that the unbalance between oxidant and antioxidant species may affect the onset and/or the course of a number of common diseases including Parkinson's and Alzheimer's diseases. Many studies suggest a crucial role for oxidative stress in the first phase of aging, or in the pathogenesis of various diseases including neurological ones. Particularly, the role exerted by glutathione and glutathione-related enzymes (Glutathione Transferases) in the nervous system appears more relevant, this latter tissue being much more vulnerable to toxins and oxidative stress than other tissues such as liver, kidney or muscle. The present review addresses the question by focusing on the results obtained by specimens from patients or by in vitro studies using cells or animal models related to Parkinson's and Alzheimer's diseases. In general, there is an association between glutathione depletion and Parkinson's or Alzheimer's disease. In addition, a significant decrease of glutathione transferase activity in selected areas of brain and in ventricular cerebrospinal fluid was found. For some glutathione transferase genes there is also a correlation between polymorphisms and onset/outcome of neurodegenerative diseases. Thus, there is a general agreement about the protective effect exerted by glutathione and glutathione transferases but no clear answer about the mechanisms underlying this crucial role in the insurgence of neurodegenerative diseases.

  1. Autophagy, inflammation and neurodegenerative disease

    PubMed Central

    Alirezaei, Mehrdad; Kemball, Christopher C.; Whitton, J. Lindsay

    2010-01-01

    Autophagy is emerging as a central regulator of cellular health and disease and, in the central nervous system (CNS), this homeostatic process appears to influence synaptic growth and plasticity. Herein, we review the evidence that dysregulation of autophagy may contribute to several neurodegenerative diseases of the CNS. Up-regulation of autophagy may prevent, delay or ameliorate at least some of these disorders, and – based on recent findings from our laboratory – we speculate that this goal may be achieved using a safe, simple, and inexpensive approach. PMID:21138487

  2. Oxidative stress in neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Chen, Xueping; Guo, Chunyan; Kong, Jiming

    2012-02-15

    Reactive oxygen species are constantly produced in aerobic organisms as by-products of normal oxygen metabolism and include free radicals such as superoxide anion (O2 (-)) and hydroxyl radical (OH(-)), and non-radical hydrogen peroxide (H2O2). The mitochondrial respiratory chain and enzymatic reactions by various enzymes are endogenous sources of reactive oxygen species. Exogenous reactive oxygen species -inducing stressors include ionizing radiation, ultraviolet light, and divergent oxidizing chemicals. At low concentrations, reactive oxygen species serve as an important second messenger in cell signaling; however, at higher concentrations and long-term exposure, reactive oxygen species can damage cellular macromolecules such as DNA, proteins, and lipids, which leads to necrotic and apoptotic cell death. Oxidative stress is a condition of imbalance between reactive oxygen species formation and cellular antioxidant capacity due to enhanced ROS generation and/or dysfunction of the antioxidant system. Biochemical alterations in these macromolecular components can lead to various pathological conditions and human diseases, especially neurodegenerative diseases. Neurodegenerative diseases are morphologically featured by progressive cell loss in specific vulnerable neuronal cells, often associated with cytoskeletal protein aggregates forming inclusions in neurons and/or glial cells. Deposition of abnormal aggregated proteins and disruption of metal ions homeostasis are highly associated with oxidative stress. The main aim of this review is to present as much detailed information as possible that is available on various neurodegenerative disorders and their connection with oxidative stress. A variety of therapeutic strategies designed to address these pathological processes are also described. For the future therapeutic direction, one specific pathway that involves the transcription factor nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor 2 is receiving considerable attention.

  3. Neurodegenerative disorders and metabolic disease.

    PubMed

    Pierre, Germaine

    2013-08-01

    Most genetic causes of neurodegenerative disorders in childhood are due to neurometabolic disease. There are over 200 disorders, including aminoacidopathies, creatine disorders, mitochondrial cytopathies, peroxisomal disorders and lysosomal storage disorders. However, diagnosis can pose a challenge to the clinician when patients present with non-specific problems like epilepsy, developmental delay, autism, dystonia and ataxia. The variety of specialist tests involved can also be daunting. This review aims to give a practical approach to the investigation and diagnosis of neurometabolic disease from the neonatal period to late childhood while prioritising disorders where there are therapeutic options. In particular, patients who have a complex clinical picture of several neurological and non-neurological features should be investigated.

  4. Systems biology of neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Wood, Levi B; Winslow, Ashley R; Strasser, Samantha Dale

    2015-07-01

    Neurodegenerative diseases (NDs) collectively afflict more than 40 million people worldwide. The majority of these diseases lack therapies to slow or stop progression due in large part to the challenge of disentangling the simultaneous presentation of broad, multifaceted pathophysiologic changes. Present technologies and computational capabilities suggest an optimistic future for deconvolving these changes to identify novel mechanisms driving ND onset and progression. In particular, integration of highly multi-dimensional omic analytical techniques (e.g., microarray, mass spectrometry) with computational systems biology approaches provides a systematic methodology to elucidate new mechanisms driving NDs. In this review, we begin by summarizing the complex pathophysiology of NDs associated with protein aggregation, emphasizing the shared complex dysregulation found in all of these diseases, and discuss available experimental ND models. Next, we provide an overview of technological and computational techniques used in systems biology that are applicable to studying NDs. We conclude by reviewing prior studies that have applied these approaches to NDs and comment on the necessity of combining analysis from both human tissues and model systems to identify driving mechanisms. We envision that the integration of computational approaches with multiple omic analyses of human tissues, and mouse and in vitro models, will enable the discovery of new therapeutic strategies for these devastating diseases.

  5. Peptide aggregation in neurodegenerative disease.

    PubMed

    Murphy, Regina M

    2002-01-01

    In the not-so-distant past, insoluble aggregated protein was considered as uninteresting and bothersome as yesterday's trash. More recently, protein aggregates have enjoyed considerable scientific interest, as it has become clear that these aggregates play key roles in many diseases. In this review, we focus attention on three polypeptides: beta-amyloid, prion, and huntingtin, which are linked to three feared neurodegenerative diseases: Alzheimer's, "mad cow," and Huntington's disease, respectively. These proteins lack any significant primary sequence homology, yet their aggregates possess very similar features, specifically, high beta-sheet content, fibrillar morphology, relative insolubility, and protease resistance. Because the aggregates are noncrystalline, secrets of their structure at nanometer resolution are only slowly yielding to X-ray diffraction, solid-state NMR, and other techniques. Besides structure, the aggregates may possess similar pathways of assembly. Two alternative assembly pathways have been proposed: the nucleation-elongation and the template-assisted mode. These two modes may be complementary, not mutually exclusive. Strategies for interfering with aggregation, which may provide novel therapeutic approaches, are under development. The structural similarities between protein aggregates of dissimilar origin suggest that therapeutic strategies successful against one disease may have broad utility in others. PMID:12117755

  6. Stem cell technology for neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Lunn, J Simon; Sakowski, Stacey A; Hur, Junguk; Feldman, Eva L

    2011-09-01

    Over the past 20 years, stem cell technologies have become an increasingly attractive option to investigate and treat neurodegenerative diseases. In the current review, we discuss the process of extending basic stem cell research into translational therapies for patients suffering from neurodegenerative diseases. We begin with a discussion of the burden of these diseases on society, emphasizing the need for increased attention toward advancing stem cell therapies. We then explain the various types of stem cells utilized in neurodegenerative disease research, and outline important issues to consider in the transition of stem cell therapy from bench to bedside. Finally, we detail the current progress regarding the applications of stem cell therapies to specific neurodegenerative diseases, focusing on Parkinson disease, Huntington disease, Alzheimer disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, and spinal muscular atrophy. With a greater understanding of the capacity of stem cell technologies, there is growing public hope that stem cell therapies will continue to progress into realistic and efficacious treatments for neurodegenerative diseases.

  7. Neuroprotective effects of berry fruits on neurodegenerative diseases

    PubMed Central

    Subash, Selvaraju; Essa, Musthafa Mohamed; Al-Adawi, Samir; Memon, Mushtaq A.; Manivasagam, Thamilarasan; Akbar, Mohammed

    2014-01-01

    Recent clinical research has demonstrated that berry fruits can prevent age-related neurodegenerative diseases and improve motor and cognitive functions. The berry fruits are also capable of modulating signaling pathways involved in inflammation, cell survival, neurotransmission and enhancing neuroplasticity. The neuroprotective effects of berry fruits on neurodegenerative diseases are related to phytochemicals such as anthocyanin, caffeic acid, catechin, quercetin, kaempferol and tannin. In this review, we made an attempt to clearly describe the beneficial effects of various types of berries as promising neuroprotective agents. PMID:25317174

  8. The Potential of Chitosan and Its Derivatives in Prevention and Treatment of Age-Related Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Kerch, Garry

    2015-01-01

    Age-related, diet-related and protein conformational diseases, such as atherosclerosis, diabetes mellitus, cancer, hypercholesterolemia, cardiovascular and neurodegenerative diseases are common in the elderly population. The potential of chitosan, chitooligosaccharides and their derivatives in prevention and treatment of age-related dysfunctions is reviewed and discussed in this paper. The influence of oxidative stress, low density lipoprotein oxidation, increase of tissue stiffness, protein conformational changes, aging-associated chronic inflammation and their pathobiological significance have been considered. The chitosan-based functional food also has been reviewed. PMID:25871293

  9. The potential of chitosan and its derivatives in prevention and treatment of age-related diseases.

    PubMed

    Kerch, Garry

    2015-04-01

    Age-related, diet-related and protein conformational diseases, such as atherosclerosis, diabetes mellitus, cancer, hypercholesterolemia, cardiovascular and neurodegenerative diseases are common in the elderly population. The potential of chitosan, chitooligosaccharides and their derivatives in prevention and treatment of age-related dysfunctions is reviewed and discussed in this paper. The influence of oxidative stress, low density lipoprotein oxidation, increase of tissue stiffness, protein conformational changes, aging-associated chronic inflammation and their pathobiological significance have been considered. The chitosan-based functional food also has been reviewed.

  10. [Relationship between educational level and dementia: social factor and age-related chronic disease].

    PubMed

    Dartigues, J-F; Foubert-Samier, A; Helmer, C

    2013-08-01

    Dementia is an age-related chronic syndrome, whose the first cause is a neurodegenerative disease: Alzheimer's disease (AD). In spite of some controversies, educational level is now considered as a major risk factor for dementia and AD. The protective effect of a high level of education could be related to a preservation of cognitive reserve and a reinforcement of brain reserve. Moreover, subjects with a high level of education have a better access to health care and a better management of vascular risk factors. With the general improvement of the educational level, the age-related incidence of AD and dementia should decrease in the future.

  11. Sound Naming in Neurodegenerative Disease

    PubMed Central

    Chow, Maggie L; Brambati, Simona M; Gorno-Tempini, Maria Luisa; Miller, Bruce L; Johnson, Julene K

    2010-01-01

    Modern cognitive neuroscientific theories and empirical evidence suggest that brain structures involved in movement may be related to action-related semantic knowledge. To test this hypothesis, we examined the naming of environmental sounds in patients with corticobasal degeneration (CBD) and progressive supranuclear palsy (PSP), two neurodegenerative diseases associated with cognitive and motor deficits. Subjects were presented with 56 environmental sounds: 28 of objects that required manipulation when producing the sound, and 28 that required no manipulation. Subjects were asked to provide the name of the object that produced the sound and also complete a sound-picture matching condition. Subjects included 33 individuals from four groups: CBD/PSP, Alzheimer disease, frontotemporal dementia, and normal controls. We hypothesized that CBD/PSP patients would exhibit impaired naming performance compared with controls, but the impairment would be most apparent when naming sounds associated with actions. We also explored neural correlates of naming environmental sounds using voxel-based morphometry (VBM) of brain MRI. As expected, CBD/PSP patients scored lower on environmental sounds naming (p<0.007) compared with the controls. In particular, the CBD/PSP patients scored the lowest when naming sounds of manipulable objects (p<0.05), but did not show deficits in naming sounds of non-manipulable objects. VBM analysis across all groups showed that performance in naming sounds of manipulable objects correlated with atrophy in the left premotor region, extending from area 6 to the middle and superior frontal gyrus. These results indicate an association between impairment in the retrieval of action-related names and the motor system, and suggest that difficulty in naming manipulable sounds may be related to atrophy in the premotor cortex. Our results support the hypothesis that retrieval of action-related semantic knowledge involves motor regions in the brain. PMID:20089342

  12. [Microglial Phagocytosis in the Neurodegenerative Diseases].

    PubMed

    Cao, Sheng-nan; Bao, Xiu-qi; Sun, Hua; Zhang, Dan

    2016-04-01

    Microglia are the resident innate immune cells in the brain. Under endogenous or exogenous stimulates, they become activated and play an important role in the neurodegenerative diseases. Microglial phagocytosis is a process of receptor-mediated engulfment and degradation of apoptotic cells. In addition, microglia can phagocyte brain-specific cargo, such as myelin debris and abnormal protein aggregation. However, recent studies have shown that microglia can also phagocyte stressed-but-viable neurons, causing loss of neurons in the brain. Thus, whether microglial phagocytosis is beneficial or not in neurodegenerative disease remains controversial. This article reviews microglial phagocytosis related mechanisms and its potential roles in neurodegenerative diseases, with an attempt to provide new insights in the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:27181903

  13. [Microglial Phagocytosis in the Neurodegenerative Diseases].

    PubMed

    Cao, Sheng-nan; Bao, Xiu-qi; Sun, Hua; Zhang, Dan

    2016-04-01

    Microglia are the resident innate immune cells in the brain. Under endogenous or exogenous stimulates, they become activated and play an important role in the neurodegenerative diseases. Microglial phagocytosis is a process of receptor-mediated engulfment and degradation of apoptotic cells. In addition, microglia can phagocyte brain-specific cargo, such as myelin debris and abnormal protein aggregation. However, recent studies have shown that microglia can also phagocyte stressed-but-viable neurons, causing loss of neurons in the brain. Thus, whether microglial phagocytosis is beneficial or not in neurodegenerative disease remains controversial. This article reviews microglial phagocytosis related mechanisms and its potential roles in neurodegenerative diseases, with an attempt to provide new insights in the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases.

  14. Pathophysiology of ageing, longevity and age related diseases

    PubMed Central

    Bürkle, Alexander; Caselli, Graziella; Franceschi, Claudio; Mariani, Erminia; Sansoni, Paolo; Santoni, Angela; Vecchio, Giancarlo; Witkowski, Jacek M; Caruso, Calogero

    2007-01-01

    On April 18, 2007 an international meeting on Pathophysiology of Ageing, Longevity and Age-Related Diseases was held in Palermo, Italy. Several interesting topics on Cancer, Immunosenescence, Age-related inflammatory diseases and longevity were discussed. In this report we summarize the most important issues. However, ageing must be considered an unavoidable end point of the life history of each individual, nevertheless the increasing knowledge on ageing mechanisms, allows envisaging many different strategies to cope with, and delay it. So, a better understanding of pathophysiology of ageing and age-related disease is essential for giving everybody a reasonable chance for living a long and enjoyable final part of the life. PMID:17683521

  15. Metal attenuating therapies in neurodegenerative disease.

    PubMed

    Mot, Alexandra I; Wedd, Anthony G; Sinclair, Layla; Brown, David R; Collins, Steven J; Brazier, Marcus W

    2011-12-01

    The clinical and pathological spectrum of neurodegenerative diseases is diverse, although common to many of these disorders is the accumulation of misfolded proteins, with oxidative stress thought to be an important contributing mechanism to neuronal damage. As a corollary, transition metal ion dyshomeostasis appears to play a key pathogenic role in a number of these maladies, including the most common of neurodegenerative diseases. In this review, studies spanning a wide variety of neurodegenerative disorders are presented with their involvement of transition metals compared and contrasted, including more detailed treatise in relation to Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease and prion diseases. For each of these diseases, a discussion of the evolving scientific rationale for the development of therapies aimed at ameliorating the detrimental effects of transition metal dysregulation, including results from various human trials, is then provided.

  16. The Marmoset as a Model of Aging and Age-Related Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Tardif, Suzette D.; Mansfield, Keith G.; Ratnam, Rama; Ross, Corinna N.; Ziegler, Toni E.

    2013-01-01

    The common marmoset (Callithrix jacchus) is poised to become a standard nonhuman primate aging model. With an average lifespan of 5 to 7 years and a maximum lifespan of 16.5 years, marmosets are the shortest-lived anthropoid primates. They display age-related changes in pathologies that mirror those seen in humans, such as cancer, amyloidosis, diabetes, and chronic renal disease. They also display predictable age-related differences in lean mass, calf circumference, circulating albumin, hemoglobin, and hematocrit. Features of spontaneous sensory and neurodegenerative change—for example, reduced neurogenesis, β-amyloid deposition in the cerebral cortex, loss of calbindin D28k binding, and evidence of presbycusis—appear between the ages of 7 and 10 years. Variation among colonies in the age at which neurodegenerative change occurs suggests the interesting possibility that marmosets could be specifically managed to produce earlier versus later occurrence of degenerative conditions associated with differing rates of damage accumulation. In addition to the established value of the marmoset as a model of age-related neurodegenerative change, this primate can serve as a model of the integrated effects of aging and obesity on metabolic dysfunction, as it displays evidence of such dysfunction associated with high body weight as early as 6 to 8 years of age. PMID:21411858

  17. Stem cell transplantation improves aging-related diseases

    PubMed Central

    Ikehara, Susumu; Li, Ming

    2014-01-01

    Aging is a complex process of damage accumulation, and has been viewed as experimentally and medically intractable. The number of patients with age-associated diseases such as type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM), osteoporosis, Alzheimer's disease (AD), Parkinson's disease, atherosclerosis, and cancer has increased recently. Aging-related diseases are related to a deficiency of the immune system, which results from an aged thymus and bone marrow cells. Intra bone marrow-bone marrow transplantation (IBM-BMT) is a useful method to treat intractable diseases. This review summarizes findings that IBM-BMT can improve and treat aging-related diseases, including T2DM, osteoporosis and AD, in animal models. PMID:25364723

  18. Oligonucleotide-based therapy for neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Magen, Iddo; Hornstein, Eran

    2014-10-10

    Molecular genetics insight into the pathogenesis of several neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer׳s disease, Parkinson׳s disease, Huntington׳s disease and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, encourages direct interference with the activity of neurotoxic genes or the molecular activation of neuroprotective pathways. Oligonucleotide-based therapies are recently emerging as an efficient strategy for drug development and these can be employed as new treatments of neurodegenerative states. Here we review advances in this field in recent years which suggest an encouraging assessment that oligonucleotide technologies for targeting of RNAs will enable the development of new therapies and will contribute to preservation of brain integrity.

  19. Nutritional influences on epigenetics and age-related disease

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Nutritional epigenetics has emerged as a novel mechanism underlying gene–diet interactions, further elucidating the modulatory role of nutrition in aging and age-related disease development. Epigenetics is defined as a heritable modification to the DNA that regulates chromosome architecture and modu...

  20. The relevance of aging-related changes in brain function to rehabilitation in aging-related disease

    PubMed Central

    Crosson, Bruce; McGregor, Keith M.; Nocera, Joe R.; Drucker, Jonathan H.; Tran, Stella M.; Butler, Andrew J.

    2015-01-01

    The effects of aging on rehabilitation of aging-related diseases are rarely a design consideration in rehabilitation research. In this brief review we present strong coincidental evidence from these two fields suggesting that deficits in aging-related disease or injury are compounded by the interaction between aging-related brain changes and disease-related brain changes. Specifically, we hypothesize that some aphasia, motor, and neglect treatments using repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) or transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) in stroke patients may address the aging side of this interaction. The importance of testing this hypothesis and addressing the larger aging by aging-related disease interaction is discussed. Underlying mechanisms in aging that most likely are relevant to rehabilitation of aging-related diseases also are covered. PMID:26074807

  1. DNA methylation, a hand behind neurodegenerative diseases

    PubMed Central

    Lu, Haoyang; Liu, Xinzhou; Deng, Yulin; Qing, Hong

    2013-01-01

    Epigenetic alterations represent a sort of functional modifications related to the genome that are not responsible for changes in the nucleotide sequence. DNA methylation is one of such epigenetic modifications that have been studied intensively for the past several decades. The transfer of a methyl group to the 5 position of a cytosine is the key feature of DNA methylation. A simple change as such can be caused by a variety of factors, which can be the cause of many serious diseases including several neurodegenerative diseases. In this review, we have reviewed and summarized recent progress regarding DNA methylation in four major neurodegenerative diseases: Alzheimer's disease (AD), Parkinson's disease (PD), Huntington's disease (HD), and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). The studies of these four major neurodegenerative diseases conclude the strong suggestion of the important role DNA methylation plays in these diseases. However, each of these diseases has not yet been understood completely as details in some areas remain unclear, and will be investigated in future studies. We hope this review can provide new insights into the understanding of neurodegenerative diseases from the epigenetic perspective. PMID:24367332

  2. Telomere length variations in aging and age-related diseases.

    PubMed

    Rizvi, Saliha; Raza, Syed Tasleem; Mahdi, Farzana

    2014-01-01

    Telomeres are gene sequences present at chromosomal ends and are responsible for maintaining genome integrity. Telomere length is maximum at birth and decreases progressively with advancing age and thus is considered as a biomarker of chronological aging. This age associated decrease in the length of telomere is linked to various ageing associated diseases like diabetes, hypertension, Alzheimer's disease, cancer etc. and their associated complications. Telomere length is a result of combined effect of oxidative stress, inflammation and repeated cell replication on it, and thus forming an association between telomere length and chronological aging and related diseases. Thus, decrease in telomere length was found to be important in determining both, the variations in longevity and age-related diseases in an individual. Ongoing and progressive research in the field of telomere length dynamics has proved that aging and age-related diseases apart from having a synergistic effect on telomere length were also found to effect telomere length independently also. Here a short description about telomere length variations and its association with human aging and age-related diseases is reviewed.

  3. Endocytic membrane trafficking and neurodegenerative disease.

    PubMed

    Schreij, Andrea M A; Fon, Edward A; McPherson, Peter S

    2016-04-01

    Neurodegenerative diseases are amongst the most devastating of human disorders. New technologies have led to a rapid increase in the identification of disease-related genes with an enhanced appreciation of the key roles played by genetics in the etiology of these disorders. Importantly, pinpointing the normal function of disease gene proteins leads to new understanding of the cellular machineries and pathways that are altered in the disease process. One such emerging pathway is membrane trafficking in the endosomal system. This key cellular process controls the localization and levels of a myriad of proteins and is thus critical for normal cell function. In this review we will focus on three neurodegenerative diseases; Parkinson disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, and hereditary spastic paraplegias, for which a large number of newly discovered disease genes encode proteins that function in endosomal membrane trafficking. We will describe how alterations in these proteins affect endosomal function and speculate on the contributions of these disruptions to disease pathophysiology. PMID:26721251

  4. Induced pluripotent stem cells and neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Chen, Chao; Xiao, Shi-Fu

    2011-04-01

    Neurodegenerative diseases, including Parkinson's disease, Alzheimer's disease and Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, are characterized by idiopathic neuron loss in different regions of the central nervous system, which contributes to the relevant dysfunctions in the patients. The application of cell replacement therapy using human embryonic stem (hES) cells, though having attracted much attention, has been hampered by the intrinsic ethical problems. It has been demonstrated that adult somatic cells can be reprogrammed into the embryonic state, called induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells. It is soon realized that iPS cells may be an alternative source for cell replacement therapy, because it raises no ethical problems and using patient-specific iPS cells for autologous transplantation will not lead to immunological rejection. What's more, certain types of neurons derived from patient-specific iPS cells may display disease-relevant phenotypes. Thus, patient-specific iPS cells can provide a unique opportunity to directly investigate the pathological properties of relevant neural cells in individual patient, and to study the vulnerability of neural cells to pathogenic factors in vitro, which may help reveal the pathogenesis of many neurodegenerative diseases. In this review, the recent development in cellular treatment of neurodegenerative diseases using iPS cells was summarized, and the potential value of iPS cells in the modeling of neurodegenerative disease was discussed.

  5. Mitochondrial drug targets in neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Lee, Jiyoun

    2016-02-01

    Growing evidence suggests that mitochondrial dysfunction is the main culprit in neurodegenerative diseases. Given the fact that mitochondria participate in diverse cellular processes, including energetics, metabolism, and death, the consequences of mitochondrial dysfunction in neuronal cells are inevitable. In fact, new strategies targeting mitochondrial dysfunction are emerging as potential alternatives to current treatment options for neurodegenerative diseases. In this review, we focus on mitochondrial proteins that are directly associated with mitochondrial dysfunction. We also examine recently identified small molecule modulators of these mitochondrial targets and assess their potential in research and therapeutic applications.

  6. Circulating microRNAs in Neurodegenerative Diseases.

    PubMed

    Grasso, Margherita; Piscopo, Paola; Crestini, Alessio; Confaloni, Annamaria; Denti, Michela A

    2015-01-01

    Neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer's disease (AD), Parkinson's disease (PD), and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), are caused by a combination of events that impair normal neuronal function. Although they are considered different disorders, there are overlapping features among them from the clinical, pathological, and genetic points of view. Synaptic dysfunction and loss, neurite retraction, and the appearance of other abnormalities such as axonal transport defects normally precede the neuronal loss that is a relatively late event. The diagnosis of many neurodegenerative diseases is mainly based on patient's cognitive function analysis, and the development of diagnostic methods is complicated by the brain's capacity to compensate for neuronal loss over a long period of time. This results in the late clinical manifestation of symptoms, a time when successful treatment is no longer feasible. Thus, a noninvasive diagnostic method based on early events detection is particularly important. In the last years, some biomarkers expressed in human body fluids have been proposed. microRNAs (miRNAs), with their high stability, tissue- or cell type-specific expression, lower cost, and shorter time in the assay development, could constitute a good tool to obtain an early disease diagnosis for a wide number of human pathologies, including neurodegenerative diseases. The possibilities and challenges of using these small RNA molecules as a signature for neurodegenerative disorders is a highly promising approach for developing minimally invasive screening tests and to identify new therapeutic targets.

  7. Neuronal Network Oscillations in Neurodegenerative Diseases.

    PubMed

    Nimmrich, Volker; Draguhn, Andreas; Axmacher, Nikolai

    2015-09-01

    Cognitive and behavioral acts go along with highly coordinated spatiotemporal activity patterns in neuronal networks. Most of these patterns are synchronized by coherent membrane potential oscillations within and between local networks. By entraining multiple neurons into a common time regime, such network oscillations form a critical interface between cellular activity and large-scale systemic functions. Synaptic integrity is altered in neurodegenerative diseases, and it is likely that this goes along with characteristic changes of coordinated network activity. This notion is supported by EEG recordings from human patients and from different animal models of such disorders. However, our knowledge about the pathophysiology of network oscillations in neurodegenerative diseases is surprisingly incomplete, and increased research efforts are urgently needed. One complicating factor is the pronounced diversity of network oscillations between different brain regions and functional states. Pathological changes must, therefore, be analyzed separately in each condition and affected area. However, cumulative evidence from different diseases may result, in the future, in more unifying "oscillopathy" concepts of neurodegenerative diseases. In this review, we report present evidence for pathological changes of network oscillations in Alzheimer's disease (AD), one of the most prominent and challenging neurodegenerative disorders. The heterogeneous findings from AD are contrasted to Parkinson's disease, where motor-related changes in specific frequency bands do already fulfill criteria of a valid biomarker. PMID:25920466

  8. Role of neuroinflammation in neurodegenerative diseases (Review)

    PubMed Central

    CHEN, WEI-WEI; ZHANG, XIA; HUANG, WEN-JUAN

    2016-01-01

    Neurodegeneration is a phenomenon that occurs in the central nervous system through the hallmarks associating the loss of neuronal structure and function. Neurodegeneration is observed after viral insult and mostly in various so-called 'neurodegenerative diseases', generally observed in the elderly, such as Alzheimer's disease, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson's disease and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis that negatively affect mental and physical functioning. Causative agents of neurodegeneration have yet to be identified. However, recent data have identified the inflammatory process as being closely linked with multiple neurodegenerative pathways, which are associated with depression, a consequence of neurodegenerative disease. Accordingly, pro-inflammatory cytokines are important in the pathophysiology of depression and dementia. These data suggest that the role of neuroinflammation in neurodegeneration must be fully elucidated, since pro-inflammatory agents, which are the causative effects of neuroinflammation, occur widely, particularly in the elderly in whom inflammatory mechanisms are linked to the pathogenesis of functional and mental impairments. In this review, we investigated the role played by the inflammatory process in neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:26935478

  9. Dysregulation of Glutathione Homeostasis in Neurodegenerative Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Johnson, William M.; Wilson-Delfosse, Amy L.; Mieyal, John. J.

    2012-01-01

    Dysregulation of glutathione homeostasis and alterations in glutathione-dependent enzyme activities are increasingly implicated in the induction and progression of neurodegenerative diseases, including Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and Huntington’s diseases, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, and Friedreich’s ataxia. In this review background is provided on the steady-state synthesis, regulation, and transport of glutathione, with primary focus on the brain. A brief overview is presented on the distinct but vital roles of glutathione in cellular maintenance and survival, and on the functions of key glutathione-dependent enzymes. Major contributors to initiation and progression of neurodegenerative diseases are considered, including oxidative stress, protein misfolding, and protein aggregation. In each case examples of key regulatory mechanisms are identified that are sensitive to changes in glutathione redox status and/or in the activities of glutathione-dependent enzymes. Mechanisms of dysregulation of glutathione and/or glutathione-dependent enzymes are discussed that are implicated in pathogenesis of each neurodegenerative disease. Limitations in information or interpretation are identified, and possible avenues for further research are described with an aim to elucidating novel targets for therapeutic interventions. The pros and cons of administration of N-acetylcysteine or glutathione as therapeutic agents for neurodegenerative diseases, as well as the potential utility of serum glutathione as a biomarker, are critically evaluated. PMID:23201762

  10. Prism Management in Patients with Neurodegenerative Disease.

    PubMed

    Gilligan, Rikki

    2015-01-01

    Patients with motility problems due to neurodegenerative disease such as Parkinson's and its variations often present challenging cases for the orthoptist. A few "tricks of the trade" will be presented on how to make a Parkinson's patient's daily life a little easier.

  11. Catalpol: a potential therapeutic for neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Jiang, B; Shen, R F; Bi, J; Tian, X S; Hinchliffe, T; Xia, Y

    2015-01-01

    Neurodegenerative disorders, e.g., Alzheimer's disease (AD) and Parkinson's disease (PD) are characterized by the progressive loss of neurons and subsequent cognitive decline. They are mainly found in older populations. Due to increasing life expectancies, the toll inflicted upon society by these disorders continues to become heavier and more prominent. Despite extensive research, however, the exact etiology of these disorders is still unknown, though the pathophysiological mechanisms have been attributed to oxidative, inflammatory and apoptotic injury in the brain. Moreover, there is currently no promising therapeutic agent against these neurodegenerative changes. Catalpol, an iridoid glucoside contained richly in the roots of the small flowering plant species Rehmannia glutinosa Libosch, has been shown to have antioxidation, anti-inflammation, anti-apoptosis and other neuroprotective properties and plays a role in neuroprotection against hypoxic/ischemic injury, AD and PD in both in vivo and in vitro models. It may therefore represent a potential therapeutical agent for the treatment of hypoxic/ischemic injury and neurodegenerative diseases. Based on our studies and those of others in the literature, here we comprehensively review the role of Catalpol in neuroprotection against pathological conditions, especially in neurodegenerative states and the potential mechanisms involved.

  12. Neurodegenerative processes in Huntington's disease

    PubMed Central

    Bano, D; Zanetti, F; Mende, Y; Nicotera, P

    2011-01-01

    Huntington's disease (HD) is a complex and severe disorder characterized by the gradual and the progressive loss of neurons, predominantly in the striatum, which leads to the typical motor and cognitive impairments associated with this pathology. HD is caused by a highly polymorphic CAG trinucleotide repeat expansion in the exon-1 of the gene encoding for huntingtin protein. Since the first discovery of the huntingtin gene, investigations with a consistent number of in-vitro and in-vivo models have provided insights into the toxic events related to the expression of the mutant protein. In this review, we will summarize the progress made in characterizing the signaling pathways that contribute to neuronal degeneration in HD. We will highlight the age-dependent loss of proteostasis that is primarily responsible for the formation of aggregates observed in HD patients. The most promising molecular targets for the development of pharmacological interventions will also be discussed. PMID:22071633

  13. Long noncoding RNAs in aging and age-related diseases.

    PubMed

    Kour, Sukhleen; Rath, Pramod C

    2016-03-01

    Aging is the universal, intrinsic, genetically-controlled, evolutionarily-conserved and time-dependent intricate biological process characterised by the cumulative decline in the physiological functions and their coordination in an organism after the attainment of adulthood resulting in the imbalance of neurological, immunological and metabolic functions of the body. Various biological processes and mechanisms along with altered levels of mRNAs and proteins have been reported to be involved in the progression of aging. It is one of the major risk factors in the patho-physiology of various diseases and disorders. Recently, the discovery of pervasive transcription of a vast pool of heterogeneous regulatory noncoding RNAs (ncRNAs), including small ncRNAs (sncRNAs) and long ncRNAs (lncRNAs), in the mammalian genome have provided an alternative way to study and explore the missing links in the aging process, its mechanism(s) and related diseases in a whole new dimension. The involvement of small noncoding RNAs in aging and age-related diseases have been extensively studied and recently reviewed. However, lncRNAs, whose function is far less explored in relation to aging, have emerged as a class of major regulators of genomic functions. Here, we have described some examples of known as well as novel lncRNAs that have been implicated in the progression of the aging process and age-related diseases. This may further stimulate research on noncoding RNAs and the aging process.

  14. Long noncoding RNAs in aging and age-related diseases.

    PubMed

    Kour, Sukhleen; Rath, Pramod C

    2016-03-01

    Aging is the universal, intrinsic, genetically-controlled, evolutionarily-conserved and time-dependent intricate biological process characterised by the cumulative decline in the physiological functions and their coordination in an organism after the attainment of adulthood resulting in the imbalance of neurological, immunological and metabolic functions of the body. Various biological processes and mechanisms along with altered levels of mRNAs and proteins have been reported to be involved in the progression of aging. It is one of the major risk factors in the patho-physiology of various diseases and disorders. Recently, the discovery of pervasive transcription of a vast pool of heterogeneous regulatory noncoding RNAs (ncRNAs), including small ncRNAs (sncRNAs) and long ncRNAs (lncRNAs), in the mammalian genome have provided an alternative way to study and explore the missing links in the aging process, its mechanism(s) and related diseases in a whole new dimension. The involvement of small noncoding RNAs in aging and age-related diseases have been extensively studied and recently reviewed. However, lncRNAs, whose function is far less explored in relation to aging, have emerged as a class of major regulators of genomic functions. Here, we have described some examples of known as well as novel lncRNAs that have been implicated in the progression of the aging process and age-related diseases. This may further stimulate research on noncoding RNAs and the aging process. PMID:26655093

  15. Resveratrol: A Focus on Several Neurodegenerative Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Tellone, Ester; Galtieri, Antonio; Russo, Annamaria; Giardina, Bruno; Ficarra, Silvana

    2015-01-01

    Molecules of the plant world are proving their effectiveness in countering, slowing down, and regressing many diseases. The resveratrol for its intrinsic properties related to its stilbene structure has been proven to be a universal panacea, especially for a wide range of neurodegenerative diseases. This paper evaluates (in vivo and in vitro) the various molecular targets of this peculiar polyphenol and its ability to effectively counter several neurodegenerative disorders such as Parkinson's, Alzheimer's, and Huntington's diseases and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. What emerges is that, in the deep heterogeneity of the pathologies evaluated, resveratrol through a convergence on the protein targets is able to give therapeutic responses in neuronal cells deeply diversified not only in morphological structure but especially in their function performed in the anatomical district to which they belong. PMID:26180587

  16. Developing neural stem cell-based treatments for neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Byrne, James A

    2014-05-30

    Owing to the aging of the population, our society now faces an impending wave of age-related neurodegenerative pathologies, the most significant of which is Alzheimer's disease. Currently, no effective therapies for Alzheimer's disease have been developed. However, recent advances in the fields of neural stem cells and human induced pluripotent stem cells now provide us with the first real hope for a cure. The recent discovery by Blurton-Jones and colleagues that neural stem cells can effectively deliver disease-modifying therapeutic proteins throughout the brains of our best rodent models of Alzheimer's disease, combined with recent advances in human nuclear reprogramming, stem cell research, and highly customized genetic engineering, may represent a potentially revolutionary personalized cellular therapeutic approach capable of effectively curing, ameliorating, and/or slowing the progression of Alzheimer's disease.

  17. Curcumin, inflammation, ageing and age-related diseases.

    PubMed

    Sikora, E; Scapagnini, Giovanni; Barbagallo, Mario

    2010-01-17

    A Symposium regarding the Pathophysiology of Successful and Unsuccessful Ageing was held in Palermo, Italy between April 7 and 8th 2009. Here the lecture by Sikora with some input from the chairpersons Scapagnini and Barbagallo is summarized. Ageing is manifested by the decreasing health status and increasing probability to acquire age-related disease such as cancer, Alzheimer's disease, atherosclerosis, metabolic disorders and others. They are likely caused by low grade inflammation driven by oxygen stress and manifested by the increased level of pro-inflammatory cytokines such as IL-1, IL-6 and TNF-alpha, encoded by genes activated by the transcription factor NF-kappaB. It is believed that ageing is plastic and can be slowed down by caloric restriction as well as by some nutraceuticals. Accordingly, slowing down ageing and postponing the onset of age-related diseases might be achieved by blocking the NF-kappaB-dependent inflammation. In this review we consider the possibility of the spice curcumin, a powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory agent possibly capable of improving the health status of the elderly.

  18. The Role of Uric Acid and Methyl Derivatives in the Prevention of Age-Related Neurodegenerative Disorders.

    PubMed

    Cutler, Roy G; Camandola, Simonetta; Malott, Kelli F; Edelhauser, Maria A; Mattson, Mark P

    2015-01-01

    High uric acid (UA levels have been correlated with a reduced risk of many neurodegenerative diseases through mechanisms involving chelating Fenton reaction transitional metals, antioxidant quenching of superoxide and hydroxyl free radicals, and as an electron donor that increases antioxidant enzyme activity (e.g. SOD. However, the clinical usefulness of UA is limited by its' low water solubility and propensity to form inflammatory crystals at hyperuricemic levels. This review focuses on the role of UA in neuroprotection, as well as potential strategies aimed at increasing UA levels in the soluble range, and the potential therapeutic use of more water-soluble methyl-UA derivatives from the natural catabolic end-products of dietary caffeine, theophylline, and theobromine. PMID:26059354

  19. Neurodegenerative disease high-field imaging

    PubMed Central

    van der Grond, J.; van Buchem, M.A.; van Zijl, P.; Webb, A.G.

    2012-01-01

    High field magnetic resonance imaging is showing potential for imaging of neurodegenerative diseases. 7 T MRI is beginning to be used in a clinical research setting and the theoretical benefits, i.e. higher signal-to-noise, sensitivity to iron, improved MRA and increased spectral resolution in spectroscopy are being confirmed. Despite the limited number of studies to date, initial results in patients with multiple sclerosis, Alzheimer’s disease and Huntington’s disease show promising additional features in contrast that may assist in better diagnosis of these disorders. PMID:22548926

  20. Prion-like Mechanisms in Neurodegenerative Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Frost, Bess; Diamond, Marc I.

    2013-01-01

    Many non-infectious neurodegenerative diseases are associated with the accumulation of fibrillar protein. These diseases all exhibit phenotypic diversity and propagation of pathology that is reminiscent of prionopathies. Furthermore, emerging studies of amyloid-β, α–synuclein, and tau proteins suggest that they share key biophysical and biochemical characteristics with prions. Propagation of protein misfolding in these diseases may therefore occur via mechanisms similar to those underlying prion pathogenesis. If verified in vivo, this will suggest new therapeutic strategies to block propagation of protein misfolding throughout the brain. PMID:20029438

  1. The promises of neurodegenerative disease modeling.

    PubMed

    Lepesant, Jean-Antoine

    2015-01-01

    The rise in the prevalence of neurodegenerative diseases parallels the rapid increase in human lifespan. Despite intensive research, the molecular and cellular mechanisms underlying the onset and progression of these devastating diseases with age are still poorly understood. Many aspects of these diseases have been modelled successfully in experimental animals such as the mouse, the zebrafish Brachydanio rero, the nematode worm Caenorhaditis elegans and the fruit fly Drosophila melanogaster. This review will focus on the advantages offered by the genetic tools available in Drosophila for combining powerful strategies in order to tackle the causative factors of these complex pathologies and help to elaborate efficient drugs to treat them.

  2. Nitric Oxide Homeostasis in Neurodegenerative Diseases.

    PubMed

    Hannibal, Luciana

    2016-01-01

    The role of nitric oxide in the pathogenesis and progression of neurodegenerative illnesses such as Parkinson's and Alzheimer's diseases has become prominent over the years. Increased activity of the enzymes that produce reactive oxygen species, decreased activity of antioxidant enzymes and imbalances in glutathione pools mediate and mark the neurodegenerative process. Much of the oxidative damage of proteins is brought about by the overproduction of nitric oxide by nitric oxide synthases (NOS) and its subsequent reactivity with reactive oxygen species. Proteomic methods have advanced the field tremendously, by facilitating the quantitative assessment of differential expression patterns and oxidative modifications of proteins and alongside, mapping their non-canonical functions. As a signaling molecule involved in multiple biochemical pathways, the level of nitric oxide is subject to tight regulation. All three NOS isoforms display aberrant patterns of expression in Alzheimer's disease, altering intracellular signaling and routing oxidative stress in directions that are uncompounded. This review discusses the prime factors that control nitric oxide biosynthesis, reactivity footprints and ensuing effects in the development of neurodegenerative diseases.

  3. Implications of glial nitric oxide in neurodegenerative diseases

    PubMed Central

    Yuste, Jose Enrique; Tarragon, Ernesto; Campuzano, Carmen María; Ros-Bernal, Francisco

    2015-01-01

    Nitric oxide (NO) is a pleiotropic janus-faced molecule synthesized by nitric oxide synthases (NOS) which plays a critical role in a number of physiological and pathological processes in humans. The physiological roles of NO depend on its local concentrations, as well as its availability and the nature of downstream target molecules. Its double-edged sword action has been linked to neurodegenerative disorders. Excessive NO production, as the evoked by inflammatory signals, has been identified as one of the major causative reasons for the pathogenesis of several neurodegenerative diseases. Moreover, excessive NO synthesis under neuroinflammation leads to the formation of reactive nitrogen species and neuronal cell death. There is an intimate relation between microglial activation, NO and neuroinflammation in the human brain. The role of NO in neuroinflammation has been defined in animal models where this neurotransmitter can modulate the inflammatory process acting on key regulatory pathways, such as those associated with excitotoxicity processes induced by glutamate accumulation and microglial activation. Activated glia express inducible NOS and produce NO that triggers calcium mobilization from the endoplasmic reticulum, activating the release of vesicular glutamate from astroglial cells resulting in neuronal death. This change in microglia potentially contributes to the increased age-associated susceptibility and neurodegeneration. In the current review, information is provided about the role of NO, glial activation and age-related processes in the central nervous system (CNS) that may be helpful in the isolation of new therapeutic targets for aging and neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:26347610

  4. Implications of glial nitric oxide in neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Yuste, Jose Enrique; Tarragon, Ernesto; Campuzano, Carmen María; Ros-Bernal, Francisco

    2015-01-01

    Nitric oxide (NO) is a pleiotropic janus-faced molecule synthesized by nitric oxide synthases (NOS) which plays a critical role in a number of physiological and pathological processes in humans. The physiological roles of NO depend on its local concentrations, as well as its availability and the nature of downstream target molecules. Its double-edged sword action has been linked to neurodegenerative disorders. Excessive NO production, as the evoked by inflammatory signals, has been identified as one of the major causative reasons for the pathogenesis of several neurodegenerative diseases. Moreover, excessive NO synthesis under neuroinflammation leads to the formation of reactive nitrogen species and neuronal cell death. There is an intimate relation between microglial activation, NO and neuroinflammation in the human brain. The role of NO in neuroinflammation has been defined in animal models where this neurotransmitter can modulate the inflammatory process acting on key regulatory pathways, such as those associated with excitotoxicity processes induced by glutamate accumulation and microglial activation. Activated glia express inducible NOS and produce NO that triggers calcium mobilization from the endoplasmic reticulum, activating the release of vesicular glutamate from astroglial cells resulting in neuronal death. This change in microglia potentially contributes to the increased age-associated susceptibility and neurodegeneration. In the current review, information is provided about the role of NO, glial activation and age-related processes in the central nervous system (CNS) that may be helpful in the isolation of new therapeutic targets for aging and neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:26347610

  5. Why neurodegenerative diseases are progressive: uncontrolled inflammation drives disease progression

    PubMed Central

    Gao, Hui-Ming; Hong, Jau-Shyong

    2016-01-01

    Neurodegenerative diseases are a group of chronic, progressive disorders characterized by the gradual loss of neurons in discrete areas of the central nervous system (CNS). The mechanism(s) underlying their progressive nature remains unknown but a timely and well-controlled inflammatory reaction is essential for the integrity and proper function of the CNS. Substantial evidence has documented a common inflammatory mechanism in various neurodegenerative diseases. We hypothesize that in the diseased CNS, interactions between damaged neurons and dysregulated, overactivated microglia create a vicious self-propagating cycle causing uncontrolled, prolonged inflammation that drives the chronic progression of neurodegenerative diseases. We further propose that dynamic modulation of this inflammatory reaction by interrupting the vicious cycle might become a disease-modifying therapeutic strategy for neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:18599350

  6. Parabiosis for the study of age-related chronic disease

    PubMed Central

    Eggel, Alexander; Wyss-Coray, Tony

    2014-01-01

    Summary Modern medicine wields the power to treat large numbers of diseases and injuries most of us would have died from just a hundred years ago. In view of this tremendous achievement, it can seem as if progress has slowed, and we have been unable to impact the most devastating diseases of our time. Chronic diseases of age such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes, osteoarthritis, or Alzheimer’s disease turn out to be of a complexity that may require transformative ideas and paradigms to understand and treat them. Parabiosis, which mimics aspects of the naturally occurring shared blood supply in conjoined twins in humans and certain animals, may just have the power to be such a transformative experimental paradigm. Forgotten and now shunned in many countries, it has contributed to major breakthroughs in tumor biology, endocrinology, and transplantation research in the past century, and a set of new studies in the US and Britain report stunning advances in stem cell biology and tissue regeneration using parabiosis between young and old mice. We review here briefly the history of parabiosis and discuss its utility to study physiological and pathophysiological processes. We argue that parabiosis is a technique that should enjoy wider acceptance and application, and that policies should be revisited especially if one is to study complex age-related, chronic disorders. PMID:24496774

  7. [The role of thiamine in neurodegenerative diseases].

    PubMed

    Bubko, Irena; Gruber, Beata M; Anuszewska, Elżbieta L

    2015-09-21

    Vitamin B1 (thiamine) plays an important role in metabolism. It is indispensable for normal growth and development of the organism. Thiamine has a favourable impact on a number of systems, including the digestive, cardiovascular and nervous systems. It also stimulates the brain and improves the psycho-emotional state. Hence it is often called the vitamin of "reassurance of the spirit". Thiamine is a water-soluble vitamin. It can be present in the free form as thiamine or as its phosphate esters: mono-, di- or triphosphate. The main source of thiamine as an exogenous vitamin is certain foodstuffs, but trace amounts can be synthesised by microorganisms of the large intestine. The recommended daily intake of thiamine is about 2.0 mg. Since vitamin B1 has no ability to accumulate in the organism, manifestations of its deficiency begin to appear very quickly. The chronic state of thiamine deficiency, to a large extent, because of its function, contributes to the development of neurodegenerative diseases. It was proved that supporting vitamin B1 therapy not only constitutes neuroprotection but can also have a favourable impact on advanced neurodegenerative diseases. This article presents the current state of knowledge as regards the effects of thiamine exerted through this vitamin in a number of diseases such as Parkinson's disease, Alzheimer's disease, Wernicke's encephalopathy or Wernicke-Korsakoff syndrome and Huntington's disease.

  8. Mitochondrial and Cell Death Mechanisms in Neurodegenerative Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Martin, Lee J.

    2010-01-01

    Alzheimer’s disease (AD), Parkinson’s disease (PD) and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) are the most common human adult-onset neurodegenerative diseases. They are characterized by prominent age-related neurodegeneration in selectively vulnerable neural systems. Some forms of AD, PD, and ALS are inherited, and genes causing these diseases have been identified. Nevertheless, the mechanisms of the neuronal cell death are unresolved. Morphological, biochemical, genetic, as well as cell and animal model studies reveal that mitochondria could have roles in this neurodegeneration. The functions and properties of mitochondria might render subsets of selectively vulnerable neurons intrinsically susceptible to cellular aging and stress and overlying genetic variations, triggering neurodegeneration according to a cell death matrix theory. In AD, alterations in enzymes involved in oxidative phosphorylation, oxidative damage, and mitochondrial binding of Aβ and amyloid precursor protein have been reported. In PD, mutations in putative mitochondrial proteins have been identified and mitochondrial DNA mutations have been found in neurons in the substantia nigra. In ALS, changes occur in mitochondrial respiratory chain enzymes and mitochondrial cell death proteins. Transgenic mouse models of human neurodegenerative disease are beginning to reveal possible principles governing the biology of selective neuronal vulnerability that implicate mitochondria and the mitochondrial permeability transition pore. This review summarizes how mitochondrial pathobiology might contribute to neuronal death in AD, PD, and ALS and could serve as a target for drug therapy. PMID:21258649

  9. Inflammation in neurodegenerative diseases--an update.

    PubMed

    Amor, Sandra; Peferoen, Laura A N; Vogel, Daphne Y S; Breur, Marjolein; van der Valk, Paul; Baker, David; van Noort, Johannes M

    2014-06-01

    Neurodegeneration, the progressive dysfunction and loss of neurons in the central nervous system (CNS), is the major cause of cognitive and motor dysfunction. While neuronal degeneration is well-known in Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases, it is also observed in neurotrophic infections, traumatic brain and spinal cord injury, stroke, neoplastic disorders, prion diseases, multiple sclerosis and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, as well as neuropsychiatric disorders and genetic disorders. A common link between these diseases is chronic activation of innate immune responses including those mediated by microglia, the resident CNS macrophages. Such activation can trigger neurotoxic pathways leading to progressive degeneration. Yet, microglia are also crucial for controlling inflammatory processes, and repair and regeneration. The adaptive immune response is implicated in neurodegenerative diseases contributing to tissue damage, but also plays important roles in resolving inflammation and mediating neuroprotection and repair. The growing awareness that the immune system is inextricably involved in mediating damage as well as regeneration and repair in neurodegenerative disorders, has prompted novel approaches to modulate the immune system, although it remains whether these approaches can be used in humans. Additional factors in humans include ageing and exposure to environmental factors such as systemic infections that provide additional clues that may be human specific and therefore difficult to translate from animal models. Nevertheless, a better understanding of how immune responses are involved in neuronal damage and regeneration, as reviewed here, will be essential to develop effective therapies to improve quality of life, and mitigate the personal, economic and social impact of these diseases. PMID:24329535

  10. Biomarker-based dissection of neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Olsson, Bob; Zetterberg, Henrik; Hampel, Harald; Blennow, Kaj

    2011-12-01

    The diagnosis of neurodegenerative diseases within neurology and psychiatry are hampered by the difficulty in getting biopsies and thereby validating the diagnosis by pathological findings. Biomarkers for other types of disease have been readily adopted into the clinical practice where for instance troponins are standard tests when myocardial infarction is suspected. However, the use of biomarkers for neurodegeneration has not been fully incorporated into the clinical routine. With the development of cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) biomarkers that reflect pathological events within the central nervous system (CNS), important clinical diagnostic tools are becoming available. This review summarizes the most promising biomarker candidates that may be used to monitor different types of neurodegeneration and protein inclusions, as well as different types of metabolic changes, in living patients in relation to the clinical phenotype and disease progression over time. Our aim is to provide the reader with an updated lexicon on currently available biomarker candidates, how far they have come in development and how well they reflect pathogenic processes in different neurodegenerative diseases. Biomarkers for specific pathogenetic processes would also be valuable tools both to study disease pathogenesis directly in patients and to identify and monitor the effect of novel treatment strategies.

  11. Inflammation in neurodegenerative diseases--an update.

    PubMed

    Amor, Sandra; Peferoen, Laura A N; Vogel, Daphne Y S; Breur, Marjolein; van der Valk, Paul; Baker, David; van Noort, Johannes M

    2014-06-01

    Neurodegeneration, the progressive dysfunction and loss of neurons in the central nervous system (CNS), is the major cause of cognitive and motor dysfunction. While neuronal degeneration is well-known in Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases, it is also observed in neurotrophic infections, traumatic brain and spinal cord injury, stroke, neoplastic disorders, prion diseases, multiple sclerosis and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, as well as neuropsychiatric disorders and genetic disorders. A common link between these diseases is chronic activation of innate immune responses including those mediated by microglia, the resident CNS macrophages. Such activation can trigger neurotoxic pathways leading to progressive degeneration. Yet, microglia are also crucial for controlling inflammatory processes, and repair and regeneration. The adaptive immune response is implicated in neurodegenerative diseases contributing to tissue damage, but also plays important roles in resolving inflammation and mediating neuroprotection and repair. The growing awareness that the immune system is inextricably involved in mediating damage as well as regeneration and repair in neurodegenerative disorders, has prompted novel approaches to modulate the immune system, although it remains whether these approaches can be used in humans. Additional factors in humans include ageing and exposure to environmental factors such as systemic infections that provide additional clues that may be human specific and therefore difficult to translate from animal models. Nevertheless, a better understanding of how immune responses are involved in neuronal damage and regeneration, as reviewed here, will be essential to develop effective therapies to improve quality of life, and mitigate the personal, economic and social impact of these diseases.

  12. Quantitative interaction proteomics of neurodegenerative disease proteins.

    PubMed

    Hosp, Fabian; Vossfeldt, Hannes; Heinig, Matthias; Vasiljevic, Djordje; Arumughan, Anup; Wyler, Emanuel; Landthaler, Markus; Hubner, Norbert; Wanker, Erich E; Lannfelt, Lars; Ingelsson, Martin; Lalowski, Maciej; Voigt, Aaron; Selbach, Matthias

    2015-05-19

    Several proteins have been linked to neurodegenerative disorders (NDDs), but their molecular function is not completely understood. Here, we used quantitative interaction proteomics to identify binding partners of Amyloid beta precursor protein (APP) and Presenilin-1 (PSEN1) for Alzheimer's disease (AD), Huntingtin (HTT) for Huntington's disease, Parkin (PARK2) for Parkinson's disease, and Ataxin-1 (ATXN1) for spinocerebellar ataxia type 1. Our network reveals common signatures of protein degradation and misfolding and recapitulates known biology. Toxicity modifier screens and comparison to genome-wide association studies show that interaction partners are significantly linked to disease phenotypes in vivo. Direct comparison of wild-type proteins and disease-associated variants identified binders involved in pathogenesis, highlighting the value of differential interactome mapping. Finally, we show that the mitochondrial protein LRPPRC interacts preferentially with an early-onset AD variant of APP. This interaction appears to induce mitochondrial dysfunction, which is an early phenotype of AD.

  13. The endoplasmic reticulum stress response in aging and age-related diseases

    PubMed Central

    Brown, Marishka K.; Naidoo, Nirinjini

    2012-01-01

    The endoplasmic reticulum(ER) is a multifunctional organelle within which protein folding, lipid biosynthesis, and calcium storage occurs. Perturbations such as energy or nutrient depletion, disturbances in calcium or redox status that disrupt ER homeostasis lead to the misfolding of proteins, ER stress and up-regulation of several signaling pathways coordinately called the unfolded protein response (UPR). The UPR is characterized by the induction of chaperones, degradation of misfolded proteins and attenuation of protein translation. The UPR plays a fundamental role in the maintenance of cellular homeostasis and thus is central to normal physiology. However, sustained unresolved ER stress leads to apoptosis. Aging linked declines in expression and activity of key ER molecular chaperones and folding enzymes compromise proper protein folding and the adaptive response of the UPR. One mechanism to explain age associated declines in cellular functions and age-related diseases is a progressive failure of chaperoning systems. In many of these diseases, proteins or fragments of proteins convert from their normally soluble forms to insoluble fibrils or plaques that accumulate in a variety of organs including the liver, brain or spleen. This group of diseases, which typically occur late in life includes Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, type II diabetes and a host of less well known but often equally serious conditions such as fatal familial insomnia. The UPR is implicated in many of these neurodegenerative and familial protein folding diseases as well as several cancers and a host of inflammatory diseases including diabetes, atherosclerosis, inflammatory bowel disease and arthritis. This review will discuss age-related changes in the ER stress response and the role of the UPR in age-related diseases. PMID:22934019

  14. Overcoming obstacles to repurposing for neurodegenerative disease

    PubMed Central

    Shineman, Diana W; Alam, John; Anderson, Margaret; Black, Sandra E; Carman, Aaron J; Cummings, Jeffrey L; Dacks, Penny A; Dudley, Joel T; Frail, Donald E; Green, Allan; Lane, Rachel F; Lappin, Debra; Simuni, Tanya; Stefanacci, Richard G; Sherer, Todd; Fillit, Howard M

    2014-01-01

    Repurposing Food and Drug Administration (FDA)-approved drugs for a new indication may offer an accelerated pathway for new treatments to patients but is also fraught with significant commercial, regulatory, and reimbursement challenges. The Alzheimer’s Drug Discovery Foundation (ADDF) and the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research (MJFF) convened an advisory panel in October 2013 to understand stakeholder perspectives related to repurposing FDA-approved drugs for neurodegenerative diseases. Here, we present opportunities on how philanthropy, industry, and government can begin to address these challenges, promote policy changes, and develop targeted funding strategies to accelerate the potential of FDA-approved repurposed drugs. PMID:25356422

  15. Engineering enhanced protein disaggregases for neurodegenerative disease

    PubMed Central

    Jackrel, Meredith E; Shorter, James

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Protein misfolding and aggregation underpin several fatal neurodegenerative diseases, including Parkinson's disease (PD), amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), and frontotemporal dementia (FTD). There are no treatments that directly antagonize the protein-misfolding events that cause these disorders. Agents that reverse protein misfolding and restore proteins to native form and function could simultaneously eliminate any deleterious loss-of-function or toxic gain-of-function caused by misfolded conformers. Moreover, a disruptive technology of this nature would eliminate self-templating conformers that spread pathology and catalyze formation of toxic, soluble oligomers. Here, we highlight our efforts to engineer Hsp104, a protein disaggregase from yeast, to more effectively disaggregate misfolded proteins connected with PD, ALS, and FTD. Remarkably subtle modifications of Hsp104 primary sequence yielded large gains in protective activity against deleterious α-synuclein, TDP-43, FUS, and TAF15 misfolding. Unusually, in many cases loss of amino acid identity at select positions in Hsp104 rather than specific mutation conferred a robust therapeutic gain-of-function. Nevertheless, the misfolding and toxicity of EWSR1, an RNA-binding protein with a prion-like domain linked to ALS and FTD, could not be buffered by potentiated Hsp104 variants, indicating that further amelioration of disaggregase activity or sharpening of substrate specificity is warranted. We suggest that neuroprotection is achievable for diverse neurodegenerative conditions via surprisingly subtle structural modifications of existing chaperones. PMID:25738979

  16. Mitochondrial dysfunctions in neurodegenerative diseases: relevance to Alzheimer's disease.

    PubMed

    Hroudová, Jana; Singh, Namrata; Fišar, Zdeněk

    2014-01-01

    Mitochondrial dysfunctions are supposed to be responsible for many neurodegenerative diseases dominating in Alzheimer's disease (AD), Parkinson's disease (PD), and Huntington's disease (HD). A growing body of evidence suggests that defects in mitochondrial metabolism and particularly of electron transport chain may play a role in pathogenesis of AD. Structurally and functionally damaged mitochondria do not produce sufficient ATP and are more prominent in producing proapoptotic factors and reactive oxygen species (ROS), and this can be an early stage of several mitochondrial disorders, including neurodegenerative diseases. Mitochondrial dysfunctions may be caused by both mutations in mitochondrial or nuclear DNA that code mitochondrial components and by environmental causes. In the following review, common aspects of mitochondrial impairment concerned about neurodegenerative diseases are summarized including ROS production, impaired mitochondrial dynamics, and apoptosis. Also, damaged function of electron transport chain complexes and interactions between pathological proteins and mitochondria are described for AD particularly and marginally for PD and HD.

  17. A Potential Alternative against Neurodegenerative Diseases: Phytodrugs

    PubMed Central

    Pérez-Hernández, Jesús; Zaldívar-Machorro, Víctor Javier; Villanueva-Porras, David; Vega-Ávila, Elisa; Chavarría, Anahí

    2016-01-01

    Neurodegenerative diseases (ND) primarily affect the neurons in the human brain secondary to oxidative stress and neuroinflammation. ND are more common and have a disproportionate impact on countries with longer life expectancies and represent the fourth highest source of overall disease burden in the high-income countries. A large majority of the medicinal plant compounds, such as polyphenols, alkaloids, and terpenes, have therapeutic properties. Polyphenols are the most common active compounds in herbs and vegetables consumed by man. The biological bioactivity of polyphenols against neurodegeneration is mainly due to its antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and antiamyloidogenic effects. Multiple scientific studies support the use of herbal medicine in the treatment of ND; however, relevant aspects are still pending to explore such as metabolic analysis, pharmacokinetics, and brain bioavailability. PMID:26881043

  18. Neuropharmacology of depression in aging and age-related diseases.

    PubMed

    Gareri, Pietro; De Fazio, Pasquale; De Sarro, Giovambattista

    2002-02-01

    Depression in the elderly is nowadays a predominant health care problem, mainly due to the progressive aging of the population. It results from psychosocial stress, polypathology, as well as some biochemical changes which occur in the aged brain and can lead to cognitive impairments, increased symptoms from medical illness, higher utilization of health care services and increased rates of suicide and non-suicide mortality. Depression may be also caused by a various number of drugs currently administered; this is remarkable especially in elderly people, where polypathology is often associated with polypharmacotherapy. However, the pathogenesis of geriatric depression is not well understood; major depression may arise from dysfunction of the limbic-hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis. Some clinical observations also suggest that striato-frontal dysfunction is associated with late life depression. A number of hypotheses have been made, focusing that mood disturbances are probably linked to a disturbed central metabolism of monoamines 5-hydroxytryptamine, noradrenaline and dopamine; however most of this knowledge is derived from animal models. Parkinson's and Alzheimer's diseases are age-related diseases associated to decreased activity or brain lesions in the orbital frontal cortex and basal ganglia. These observations lead to the hypothesis that the dysfunction of one or more of the cortical basal ganglia-thalamic neuronal loops are involved in the pathophysiology of primary and secondary depression. This dysfunction may be mediated by decreased serotonin release and probably, also by reduction in serotonin receptors. Development of novel approaches such as dynamic brain imaging methods, together with indirect knowledge coming from the effects of new antidepressants, will increase the understanding of neurochemistry of depression in old age. PMID:12039452

  19. Effects of Ashwagandha (roots of Withania somnifera) on neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Kuboyama, Tomoharu; Tohda, Chihiro; Komatsu, Katsuko

    2014-01-01

    Neurodegenerative diseases commonly induce irreversible destruction of central nervous system (CNS) neuronal networks, resulting in permanent functional impairments. Effective medications against neurodegenerative diseases are currently lacking. Ashwagandha (roots of Withania somnifera Dunal) is used in traditional Indian medicine (Ayurveda) for general debility, consumption, nervous exhaustion, insomnia, and loss of memory. In this review, we summarize various effects and mechanisms of Ashwagandha extracts and related compounds on in vitro and in vivo models of neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's disease and spinal cord injury.

  20. Exercise-induced neuroprotective effects on neurodegenerative diseases: the key role of trophic factors.

    PubMed

    Campos, Carlos; Rocha, Nuno Barbosa F; Lattari, Eduardo; Paes, Flávia; Nardi, António E; Machado, Sérgio

    2016-06-01

    Age-related neurodegenerative disorders, like Alzheimer's or Parkinson's disease, are becoming a major issue to public health care. Currently, there is no effective pharmacological treatment to address cognitive impairment in these patients. Here, we aim to explore the role of exercise-induced trophic factor enhancement in the prevention or delay of cognitive decline in patients with neurodegenerative diseases. There is a significant amount of evidence from animal and human studies that links neurodegenerative related cognitive deficits with changes on brain and peripheral trophic factor levels. Several trials with elderly individuals and patients with neurodegenerative diseases report exercise induced cognitive improvements and changes on trophic factor levels including BDNF, IGF-I, among others. Further studies with healthy aging and clinical populations are needed to understand how diverse exercise interventions produce different variations in trophic factor signaling. Genetic profiles and potential confounders regarding trophic factors should also be addressed in future trials. PMID:27086703

  1. microRNAs and Neurodegenerative Diseases.

    PubMed

    Qiu, Lifeng; Tan, Eng King; Zeng, Li

    2015-01-01

    microRNAs (miRNAs) are small, noncoding RNA molecules that through imperfect base-pairing with complementary sequences of target mRNA molecules, typically cleave target mRNA, causing subsequent degradation or translation inhibition. Although an increasing number of studies have identified misregulated miRNAs in the neurodegenerative diseases (NDDs) Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, Huntington's disease, and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, which suggests that alterations in the miRNA regulatory pathway could contribute to disease pathogenesis, the molecular mechanisms underlying the pathological implications of misregulated miRNA expression and the regulation of the key genes involved in NDDs remain largely unknown. In this chapter, we provide evidence of the function and regulation of miRNAs and their association with the neurological events in NDDs. This will help improve our understanding of how miRNAs govern the biological functions of key pathogenic genes in these diseases, which potentially regulate several pathways involved in the progression of neurodegeneration. Additionally, given the growing interest in the therapeutic potential of miRNAs, we discuss current clinical challenges to developing miRNA-based therapeutics for NDDs.

  2. Role of apolipoprotein E in neurodegenerative diseases

    PubMed Central

    Giau, Vo Van; Bagyinszky, Eva; An, Seong Soo A; Kim, Sang Yun

    2015-01-01

    Apolipoprotein E (APOE) is a lipid-transport protein abundantly expressed in most neurons in the central nervous system. APOE-dependent alterations of the endocytic pathway can affect different functions. APOE binds to cell-surface receptors to deliver lipids and to the hydrophobic amyloid-β peptide, regulating amyloid-β aggregations and clearances in the brain. Several APOE isoforms with major structural differences were discovered and shown to influence the brain lipid transport, glucose metabolism, neuronal signaling, neuroinflammation, and mitochondrial function. This review will summarize the updated research progress on APOE functions and its role in Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, cardiovascular diseases, multiple sclerosis, type 2 diabetes mellitus, Type III hyperlipoproteinemia, vascular dementia, and ischemic stroke. Understanding the mutations in APOE, their structural properties, and their isoforms is important to determine its role in various diseases and to advance the development of therapeutic strategies. Targeting APOE may be a potential approach for diagnosis, risk assessment, prevention, and treatment of various neurodegenerative and cardiovascular diseases in humans. PMID:26213471

  3. The Role of Copper in Neurodegenerative Disease

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rose, Francis M.

    My research concerns the fundamental atomistic mechanisms of neurodegenerative diseases and the methodologies by which they may be discerned. This thesis consists of three primary parts. The introductory material is the raison d'etre for this work and a critical overview of the specific physics, mathematics and algorithms used in this research. The methods are presented along with specific details in order to facilitate future replication and enhancement. With the groundwork of mechanisms and methods out of the way, we then explore a nouveau atomistic mechanism describing the onset of Parkinson's disease, a disease that has been closely linked to misfolded metalloproteins. Further exploration of neurodegeneration takes place in the following chapter, where a remedial approach to Alzheimer's disease via a simulated chelation of a metalloprotein is undertaken. Altogether, the methods and techniques applied here allow for simulated exploration of both the atomistic mechanisms of neurodegeneration and their potential remediation strategies. The beginning portion of the research efforts explore protein misfolding dynamics in the presence a copper ion. Misfolding of the human alpha-synuclein (aS) protein has been implicated as a central constituent in neurodegenerative disease. In Parkinson's disease (PD) in particular, aS is thought to be the causative participant when found concentrated into neuritic plaques. Here we propose a scenario involving the metal ion Cu2+ as the protein misfolding initiator of fibrillized aS, the chief component of neuritic plaques. From experimental results we know these misfolded proteins have a rich beta--sheet signature, a marker that we reproduce with our simulated model. This model identifies a process of structural modifications to a natively unfolded alpha-synuclein resulting in a partially folded intermediate with a well defined nucleation site. It serves as a precursor to the fully misfolded protein. Understanding the nucleation

  4. Self-propagation of pathogenic protein aggregates in neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Jucker, Mathias; Walker, Lary C

    2013-09-01

    For several decades scientists have speculated that the key to understanding age-related neurodegenerative disorders may be found in the unusual biology of the prion diseases. Recently, owing largely to the advent of new disease models, this hypothesis has gained experimental momentum. In a remarkable variety of diseases, specific proteins have been found to misfold and aggregate into seeds that structurally corrupt like proteins, causing them to aggregate and form pathogenic assemblies ranging from small oligomers to large masses of amyloid. Proteinaceous seeds can therefore serve as self-propagating agents for the instigation and progression of disease. Alzheimer's disease and other cerebral proteopathies seem to arise from the de novo misfolding and sustained corruption of endogenous proteins, whereas prion diseases can also be infectious in origin. However, the outcome in all cases is the functional compromise of the nervous system, because the aggregated proteins gain a toxic function and/or lose their normal function. As a unifying pathogenic principle, the prion paradigm suggests broadly relevant therapeutic directions for a large class of currently intractable diseases.

  5. Neurodegenerative disease. Genetic discrimination in Huntington disease.

    PubMed

    Pulst, Stefan M

    2009-10-01

    A survey conducted in Canada examined the prevalence of perceived genetic discrimination against patients with Huntington disease. The respondents reported discrimination not only by insurance or mortgage companies, but also in family and social contexts. Discrimination was more frequently attributed to family history than to genetic test results. PMID:19794509

  6. Association of age-related macular degeneration and reticular macular disease with cardiovascular disease.

    PubMed

    Rastogi, Neelesh; Smith, R Theodore

    2016-01-01

    Age-related macular degeneration is the leading cause of adult blindness in the developed world. Thus, major endeavors to understand the risk factors and pathogenesis of this disease have been undertaken. Reticular macular disease is a proposed subtype of age-related macular degeneration correlating histologically with subretinal drusenoid deposits located between the retinal pigment epithelium and the inner segment ellipsoid zone. Reticular lesions are more prevalent in females and in older age groups and are associated with a higher mortality rate. Risk factors for developing age-related macular degeneration include hypertension, smoking, and angina. Several genes related to increased risk for age-related macular degeneration and reticular macular disease are also associated with cardiovascular disease. Better understanding of the clinical and genetic risk factors for age-related macular degeneration and reticular macular disease has led to the hypothesis that these eye diseases are systemic. A systemic origin may help to explain why reticular disease is diagnosed more frequently in females as males suffer cardiovascular mortality at an earlier age, before the age of diagnosis of reticular macular disease and age-related macular degeneration.

  7. Role of the Keap1/Nrf2 pathway in neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Yamazaki, Hiromi; Tanji, Kunikazu; Wakabayashi, Koichi; Matsuura, Shin; Itoh, Ken

    2015-05-01

    As the elderly population increases, a growing number of individuals suffer from age-associated neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer's disease (AD) and Parkinson's disease (PD). Oxidative stress is considered to play a crucial role in the pathogenesis of age-related diseases. The transcription factor Nrf2 (nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor 2) is activated by oxidative stress and regulates the expression of a variety of antioxidant enzymes and proteins that exert cytoprotective effects against oxidative stress. Numerous studies have addressed the role of Nrf2 in age-related diseases, including neurodegenerative diseases, using animal or in vitro cell culture models. Here, we introduce the role of oxidative stress in the pathogenesis of neurodegenerative diseases and critically examine the recent findings concerning the role for Nrf2 in the amelioration of AD and PD. Nrf2 not only regulates antioxidant proteins but also regulates the genes associated with autophagy and nerve growth factor signaling. Current research unequivocally demonstrates that the activation of the Nrf2 pathway is a promising novel strategy for the prevention and modification of neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:25707882

  8. The Role of Oxidative Stress in Neurodegenerative Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Geon Ha; Kim, Jieun E.; Rhie, Sandy Jeong

    2015-01-01

    Oxidative stress is induced by an imbalanced redox states, involving either excessive generation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) or dysfunction of the antioxidant system. The brain is one of organs especially vulnerable to the effects of ROS because of its high oxygen demand and its abundance of peroxidation-susceptible lipid cells. Previous studies have demonstrated that oxidative stress plays a central role in a common pathophysiology of neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's disease and Parkinson's disease. Antioxidant therapy has been suggested for the prevention and treatment of neurodegenerative diseases, although the results with regard to their efficacy of treating neurodegenerative disease have been inconsistent. In this review, we will discuss the role of oxidative stress in the pathophysiology of neurodegenerative diseases and in vivo measurement of an index of damage by oxidative stress. Moreover, the present knowledge on antioxidant in the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases and future directions will be outlined. PMID:26713080

  9. Neurodegenerative disease-specific induced pluripotent stem cell research.

    PubMed

    Inoue, Haruhisa

    2010-10-01

    Neurodegenerative disease-specific induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC) research contributes to the following 3 areas; "Disease modeling", "Disease material" and "Disease therapy". "Disease modeling", by recapitulating the disease phenotype in vitro, will reveal the pathomechanisms. Neurodegenerative disease-specific iPSC-derived non-neuronal cells harboring disease-causative protein(s), which play critical roles in neurodegeneration including motor neuron degeneration in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, could be "Disease material", the target cell(s) for drug screening. These differentiated cells also could be used for "Disease therapy", an autologous cellular replacement/neuroprotection strategy, for patients with neurodegenerative disease. Further progress in these areas of research can be made for currently incurable neurodegenerative diseases.

  10. Adrenoleukodystrophy: new approaches to a neurodegenerative disease.

    PubMed

    Moser, Hugo W; Raymond, Gerald V; Dubey, Prachi

    2005-12-28

    X-linked adrenoleukodystrophy (X-ALD), which was first described in 1923, was viewed until 1976 as a rare and inexorably fatal neurodegenerative disorder that affected boys. The genetic defect and biochemical abnormalities have now been defined. Ongoing research has resulted in new findings: (1) there is a wide range of phenotypic expression. At least half of patients with X-ALD are adults with somewhat milder manifestations, and women who are carriers may become symptomatic. X-ALD is often misdiagnosed as attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder in boys and as multiple sclerosis in men and women, and is not an uncommon cause of Addison disease; (2) the incidence of X-ALD, estimated to be 1:17,000 in all ethnic groups, approximates that of phenylketonuria; (3) noninvasive and presymptomatic diagnosis and prenatal diagnosis are available; family screening and genetic counseling are key to disease prevention; and (4) new therapies, applied early, show promise. Neonatal screening is likely to become available, and a wider awareness of X-ALD and its various modes of presentation permit new proactive approaches to this distressing disorder.

  11. Structural anatomy of empathy in neurodegenerative disease.

    PubMed

    Rankin, Katherine P; Gorno-Tempini, Maria Luisa; Allison, Stephen C; Stanley, Christine M; Glenn, Shenly; Weiner, Michael W; Miller, Bruce L

    2006-11-01

    Empathy is a complex social behaviour mediated by a network of brain structures. Recently, several functional imaging studies have investigated the neural basis of empathy, but few corroborative human lesion studies exist. Severe empathy loss is a common feature of frontotemporal lobar degeneration (FTLD), and is also seen in other neurodegenerative diseases. In this study, the neuroanatomic basis of empathy was investigated in 123 patients with FTLD, Alzheimer's disease, corticobasal degeneration and progressive supranuclear palsy using the Interpersonal Reactivity Index (IRI). IRI Empathic Concern and Perspective taking scores were correlated with structural MRI brain volume using voxel-based morphometry. Voxels in the right temporal pole, the right fusiform gyrus, the right caudate and right subcallosal gyrus correlated significantly with total empathy score (P < 0.05 after whole-brain correction for multiple comparisons). Empathy score correlated positively with the volume of right temporal structures in semantic dementia, and with subcallosal gyrus volume in frontotemporal dementia. These findings are consistent with previous research suggesting that a primarily right frontotemporal network of brain regions is involved in emotion processing, and highlights the roles of the right temporal pole and inferior frontal/striatal regions in regulating complex social interactions. This is the first large-scale lesion study to investigate the neural basis of empathy using correlational analytic methods. The results suggest that the right anterior temporal and medial frontal regions are essential for real-life empathic behaviour.

  12. Drosophila as a model for human neurodegenerative disease.

    PubMed

    Bilen, Julide; Bonini, Nancy M

    2005-01-01

    Among many achievements in the neurodegeneration field in the past decade, two require special attention due to the huge impact on our understanding of molecular and cellular pathogenesis of human neurodegenerative diseases. First is defining specific mutations in familial neurodegenerative diseases and second is modeling these diseases in easily manipulable model organisms including the fruit fly, nematode, and yeast. The power of these genetic systems has revealed many genetic factors involved in the various pathways affected, as well as provided potential drug targets for therapeutics. This review focuses on fruit fly models of human neurodegenerative diseases, with emphasis on how fly models have provided new insights into various aspects of human diseases.

  13. Mitochondria as a Therapeutic Target for Aging and Neurodegenerative Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Reddy, P. Hemachandra; Reddy, Tejaswini P.

    2012-01-01

    Mitochondria are cytoplasmic organelles responsible for life and death. Extensive evidence from animal models, postmortem brain studies of and clinical studies of aging and neurodegenerative diseases suggests that mitochondrial function is defective in aging and neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, Huntington’s disease, and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. Several lines of research suggest that mitochondrial abnormalities, including defects in oxidative phosphorylation, increased accumulation of mitochondrial DNA defects, impaired calcium influx, accumulation of mutant proteins in mitochondria, and mitochondrial membrane potential dissipation are important cellular changes in both early and late-onset neurodegenerative diseases. Further, emerging evidence suggests that structural changes in mitochondria, including increased mitochondrial fragmentation and decreased mitochondrial fusion, are critical factors associated with mitochondrial dysfunction and cell death in aging and neurodegenerative diseases. This paper discusses research that elucidates features of mitochondria that are associated with cellular dysfunction in aging and neurodegenerative diseases and discusses mitochondrial structural and functional changes, and abnormal mitochondrial dynamics in neurodegenerative diseases. It also outlines mitochondria-targeted therapeutics in neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:21470101

  14. MicroRNAs (miRNAs) in neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Nelson, Peter T; Wang, Wang-Xia; Rajeev, Bernard W

    2008-01-01

    Aging-related neurodegenerative diseases (NDs) are the culmination of many different genetic and environmental influences. Prior studies have shown that RNAs are pathologically altered during the inexorable course of some NDs. Recent evidence suggests that microRNAs (miRNAs) may be a contributing factor in neurodegeneration. miRNAs are brain-enriched, small ( approximately 22 nucleotides) non-coding RNAs that participate in mRNA translational regulation. Although discovered in the framework of worm development, miRNAs are now appreciated to play a dynamic role in many mammalian brain-related biochemical pathways, including neuroplasticity and stress responses. Research about miRNAs in the context of neurodegeneration is accumulating rapidly, and the goal of this review is to provide perspective for these new data that may be helpful to specialists in either field. An overview is provided about the normal functions for miRNAs, including some of the newer concepts related to the human brain. Recently published studies pertaining to the roles of miRNAs in NDs--including Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease and triplet repeat disorders-are described. Finally, a discussion is included with theoretical syntheses and possible future directions in exploring the nexus between miRNA and ND research.

  15. Human DNA methylomes of neurodegenerative diseases show common epigenomic patterns

    PubMed Central

    Sanchez-Mut, J V; Heyn, H; Vidal, E; Moran, S; Sayols, S; Delgado-Morales, R; Schultz, M D; Ansoleaga, B; Garcia-Esparcia, P; Pons-Espinal, M; de Lagran, M M; Dopazo, J; Rabano, A; Avila, J; Dierssen, M; Lott, I; Ferrer, I; Ecker, J R; Esteller, M

    2016-01-01

    Different neurodegenerative disorders often show similar lesions, such as the presence of amyloid plaques, TAU-neurotangles and synuclein inclusions. The genetically inherited forms are rare, so we wondered whether shared epigenetic aberrations, such as those affecting DNA methylation, might also exist. The studied samples were gray matter samples from the prefrontal cortex of control and neurodegenerative disease-associated cases. We performed the DNA methylation analyses of Alzheimer's disease, dementia with Lewy bodies, Parkinson's disease and Alzheimer-like neurodegenerative profile associated with Down's syndrome samples. The DNA methylation landscapes obtained show that neurodegenerative diseases share similar aberrant CpG methylation shifts targeting a defined gene set. Our findings suggest that neurodegenerative disorders might have similar pathogenetic mechanisms that subsequently evolve into different clinical entities. The identified aberrant DNA methylation changes can be used as biomarkers of the disorders and as potential new targets for the development of new therapies. PMID:26784972

  16. A review of creatine supplementation in age-related diseases: more than a supplement for athletes.

    PubMed

    Smith, Rachel N; Agharkar, Amruta S; Gonzales, Eric B

    2014-01-01

    Creatine is an endogenous compound synthesized from arginine, glycine and methionine. This dietary supplement can be acquired from food sources such as meat and fish, along with athlete supplement powders. Since the majority of creatine is stored in skeletal muscle, dietary creatine supplementation has traditionally been important for athletes and bodybuilders to increase the power, strength, and mass of the skeletal muscle. However, new uses for creatine have emerged suggesting that it may be important in preventing or delaying the onset of neurodegenerative diseases associated with aging. On average, 30% of muscle mass is lost by age 80, while muscular weakness remains a vital cause for loss of independence in the elderly population. In light of these new roles of creatine, the dietary supplement's usage has been studied to determine its efficacy in treating congestive heart failure, gyrate atrophy, insulin insensitivity, cancer, and high cholesterol. In relation to the brain, creatine has been shown to have antioxidant properties, reduce mental fatigue, protect the brain from neurotoxicity, and improve facets/components of neurological disorders like depression and bipolar disorder. The combination of these benefits has made creatine a leading candidate in the fight against age-related diseases, such as Parkinson's disease, Huntington's disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, long-term memory impairments associated with the progression of Alzheimer's disease, and stroke. In this review, we explore the normal mechanisms by which creatine is produced and its necessary physiology, while paying special attention to the importance of creatine supplementation in improving diseases and disorders associated with brain aging and outlining the clinical trials involving creatine to treat these diseases.

  17. A network approach to clinical intervention in neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Santiago, Jose A; Potashkin, Judith A

    2014-12-01

    Network biology has become a powerful tool to dissect the molecular mechanisms triggering neurodegeneration. Recent developments in network biology have led to the discovery of disease-causing genes, diagnostic biomarkers, and therapeutic targets for several neurodegenerative diseases including Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, and Huntington's diseases. Network-based approaches have provided the molecular rationale for the relationship among cancer, diabetes, and neurodegenerative diseases, and have uncovered unexpected links between apparently unrelated diseases. Here, we summarize the recent advances in network biology to untangle the molecular underpinnings giving rise to the most prevalent neurodegenerative diseases. We propose that network analysis provides a feasible and practical tool for identifying biologically meaningful biomarkers and potential therapeutic targets for clinical intervention in neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:25455073

  18. Mechanistically linking age-related diseases and dietary carbohydrate via autophagy and the ubiquitin proteolytic systems

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Epidemiological data indicate that consuming diets that deliver sugar to the blood rapidly (called high glycemic index, GI) is associated with enhanced risk for age-related diseases such as cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, cataract and age-related macular degeneration (AMD). These debilities...

  19. Is age-related macular degeneration a manifestation of systemic disease? New prospects for early intervention and treatment.

    PubMed

    Cheung, C M G; Wong, T Y

    2014-08-01

    Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is a common vision-threatening condition affecting the elderly. AMD shares common risk factors and processes, including vascular and inflammatory pathways, with many systemic disorders. Associations have been reported between AMD and hypertension, cardiovascular disease, cerebrovascular disease, dyslipidaemia, chronic kidney disease and neurodegenerative disorders. An increasing amount of evidence suggests that individuals with AMD are also at risk of systemic diseases such as stroke. In this review, we summarize the latest evidence to support the notion that AMD is an ocular manifestation of systemic disease processes, and discuss the potential systemic side effects of ocular AMD therapy of which general physicians should be aware. Recent genetic discoveries and understanding of the pathogenic pathways in AMD in relation to systemic disorders are also highlighted.

  20. Selective neuronal vulnerability in neurodegenerative diseases: from stressor thresholds to degeneration.

    PubMed

    Saxena, Smita; Caroni, Pico

    2011-07-14

    Neurodegenerative diseases selectively target subpopulations of neurons, leading to the progressive failure of defined brain systems, but the basis of such selective neuronal vulnerability has remained elusive. Here, we discuss how a stressor-threshold model of how particular neurons and circuits are selectively vulnerable to disease may underly the etiology of familial and sporadic forms of diseases such as Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, Huntington's, and ALS. According to this model, the intrinsic vulnerabilities of neuronal subpopulations to stressors and specific disease-related misfolding proteins determine neuronal morbidity. Neurodegenerative diseases then involve specific combinations of genetic predispositions and environmental stressors, triggering increasing age-related stress and proteostasis dysfunction in affected vulnerable neurons. Damage to vasculature, immune system, and local glial cells mediates environmental stress, which could drive disease at all stages.

  1. Neuron–astrocyte interactions in neurodegenerative diseases: Role of neuroinflammation

    PubMed Central

    Rama Rao, Kakulavarapu V.; Kielian, Tammy

    2015-01-01

    Selective neuron loss in discrete brain regions is a hallmark of various neurodegenerative disorders, although the mechanisms responsible for this regional vulnerability of neurons remain largely unknown. Earlier studies attributed neuron dysfunction and eventual loss during neurodegenerative diseases as exclusively cell autonomous. Although cell-intrinsic factors are one critical aspect in dictating neuron death, recent evidence also supports the involvement of other central nervous system cell types in propagating non-cell autonomous neuronal injury during neurodegenerative diseases. One such example is astrocytes, which support neuronal and synaptic function, but can also contribute to neuroinflammatory processes through robust chemokine secretion. Indeed, aberrations in astrocyte function have been shown to negatively impact neuronal integrity in several neurological diseases. The present review focuses on neuroinflammatory paradigms influenced by neuron–astrocyte cross-talk in the context of select neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:26543505

  2. Indian Herbs for the Treatment of Neurodegenerative Disease.

    PubMed

    Mannangatti, Padmanabhan; Naidu, Kamalakkannan Narasimha

    2016-01-01

    Ayurveda, an ancient system of medicine that is indigenous to India, is believed to be the world's oldest comprehensive health-care system and is now one of the most recognized and widely practiced disciplines of alternative medicine in the world. Medicinal herbs have been in use for treating diseases since ancient times in India. Ayurvedic therapies with medicinal herbs and herbomineral products generally provide relief without much adverse effects even after prolonged administration. Neurodegenerative disorders are a major cause of mortality and disability, and increasing life spans represent one of the key challenges of medical research. Ayurvedic medicine describes most neurodegenerative diseases and has defined a number of plants with therapeutic benefits for the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases having antioxidant activities. In this chapter, the role of four important Ayurvedic medicinal plants, viz., Withania somnifera (ashwagandha), Bacopa monnieri (brahmi), Centella asiatica (gotu kola), and Mucuna pruriens (velvet bean), on neurodegenerative diseases are discussed. PMID:27651261

  3. Stem cell therapy in neurodegenerative diseases: From principles to practice.

    PubMed

    Sakthiswary, Rajalingham; Raymond, Azman Ali

    2012-08-15

    The lack of curative therapies for neurodegenerative diseases has high economic impact and places huge burden on the society. The contribution of stem cells to cure neurodegenerative diseases has been unraveled and explored extensively over the past few years. Beyond substitution of the lost neurons, stem cells act as immunomodulators and neuroprotectors. A large number of preclinical and a small number of clinical studies have shown beneficial outcomes in this context. In this review, we have summarized the current concepts of stem cell therapy in neurodegenerative diseases and the recent advances in this field, particularly between 2010 and 2012. Further studies should be encouraged to resolve the clinical issues and vague translational findings for maximum optimization of the efficacy of stem cell therapy in neurodegenerative diseases.

  4. Molecular imaging of stem cell transplantation for neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Wang, Ping; Moore, Anna

    2012-01-01

    Cell replacement therapy with stem cells holds tremendous therapeutic potential for treating neurodegenerative diseases. Over the last decade, molecular imaging techniques have proven to be of great value in tracking transplanted cells and assessing the therapeutic efficacy. This current review summarizes the role and capabilities of different molecular imaging modalities including optical imaging, nuclear imaging and magnetic resonance imaging in the field of stem cell therapy for neurodegenerative disorders. We discuss current challenges and perspectives of these techniques and encompass updated information such as theranostic imaging and optogenetics in stem cell-based treatment of neurodegenerative diseases.

  5. Reprogramming therapeutics: iPS cell prospects for neurodegenerative disease.

    PubMed

    Abeliovich, Asa; Doege, Claudia A

    2009-02-12

    The recent description of somatic cell reprogramming to an embryonic stem (ES) cell-like phenotype, termed induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cell technology, presents an exciting potential venue toward cell-based therapeutics and disease models for neurodegenerative disorders. Two recent studies (Dimos et al. and Ebert et al.) describe the initial characterization of neurodegenerative disease patient-derived iPS cell cultures as proof of concept for the utility of this technology.

  6. Growth factors, aging and age-related diseases.

    PubMed

    Balasubramanian, Priya; Longo, Valter D

    2016-06-01

    Simple organisms including yeast and flies with mutations in the IGF-1 and Tor-S6K pathways are dwarfs, are highly protected from toxins, and survive up to 3 times longer. Similarly, dwarf mice with deficiencies in the growth hormone-IGF-I axis are also long lived and protected from diseases. We recently reported that humans with Growth Hormone Receptor Deficiency (GHRD) rarely develop cancer or diabetes. These findings are in agreement with the effect of defects in the Tor-S6K pathways in causing dwarfism and protection of DNA. Because protein restriction reduces both GHR-IGF-1 axis and Tor-S6K activity, we examined links between protein intake, disease, and mortality in over 6000 US subjects in the NHANES CDC database. Respondents aged 50-65 reporting a high protein intake displayed an increase in IGF-I levels, a 75% increased risk of overall mortality and a 3-4 fold increased risk of cancer mortality in agreement with findings in mouse experiments. These studies point to a conserved link between proteins and amino acids, GHR-IGF-1/insulin, Tor-S6k signaling, aging, and diseases. PMID:26883276

  7. Genetic evidence for common pathways in human age-related diseases.

    PubMed

    Johnson, Simon C; Dong, Xiao; Vijg, Jan; Suh, Yousin

    2015-10-01

    Aging is the single largest risk factor for chronic disease. Studies in model organisms have identified conserved pathways that modulate aging rate and the onset and progression of multiple age-related diseases, suggesting that common pathways of aging may influence age-related diseases in humans as well. To determine whether there is genetic evidence supporting the notion of common pathways underlying age-related diseases, we analyzed the genes and pathways found to be associated with five major categories of age-related disease using a total of 410 genomewide association studies (GWAS). While only a small number of genes are shared among all five disease categories, those found in at least three of the five major age-related disease categories are highly enriched for apoliprotein metabolism genes. We found that a more substantial number of gene ontology (GO) terms are shared among the 5 age-related disease categories and shared GO terms include canonical aging pathways identified in model organisms, such as nutrient-sensing signaling, translation, proteostasis, stress responses, and genome maintenance. Taking advantage of the vast amount of genetic data from the GWAS, our findings provide the first direct evidence that conserved pathways of aging simultaneously influence multiple age-related diseases in humans as has been demonstrated in model organisms.

  8. Evaluation of Traditional Medicines for Neurodegenerative Diseases Using Drosophila Models

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Soojin; Bang, Se Min; Lee, Joon Woo; Cho, Kyoung Sang

    2014-01-01

    Drosophila is one of the oldest and most powerful genetic models and has led to novel insights into a variety of biological processes. Recently, Drosophila has emerged as a model system to study human diseases, including several important neurodegenerative diseases. Because of the genomic similarity between Drosophila and humans, Drosophila neurodegenerative disease models exhibit a variety of human-disease-like phenotypes, facilitating fast and cost-effective in vivo genetic modifier screening and drug evaluation. Using these models, many disease-associated genetic factors have been identified, leading to the identification of compelling drug candidates. Recently, the safety and efficacy of traditional medicines for human diseases have been evaluated in various animal disease models. Despite the advantages of the Drosophila model, its usage in the evaluation of traditional medicines is only nascent. Here, we introduce the Drosophila model for neurodegenerative diseases and some examples demonstrating the successful application of Drosophila models in the evaluation of traditional medicines. PMID:24790636

  9. Immunotherapy for neurodegenerative diseases: focus on α-synucleinopathies

    PubMed Central

    Valera, Elvira; Masliah, Eliezer

    2013-01-01

    Immunotherapy is currently being intensively explored as much-needed disease-modifying treatment for neurodegenerative diseases. While Alzheimer’s disease (AD) has been the focus of numerous immunotherapeutic studies, less attention has been paid to Parkinson’s disease (PD) and other neurodegenerative disorders. The reason for this difference is that the amyloid beta (Aβ) protein in AD is a secreted molecule that circulates in blood and is readably recognized by antibodies. In contrast, α-synuclein (α-syn), tau, huntingtin and other proteins involved in neurodegenerative diseases have been considered to be exclusively of intracellular nature. However, the recent discovery that toxic oligomeric versions of α-syn and tau accumulate in the membrane and can be excreted to the extracellular environment has provided a rationale for the development of immunotherapeutic approaches for PD, dementia with Lewy bodies, frontotemporal dementia, and other neurodegenerative disorders characterized by the abnormal accumulation of these proteins. Active immunization, passive immunization, and T cell-mediated cellular immunotherapeutic approaches have been developed targeting Aβ, α-syn and tau. Most advanced studies, including results from phase III clinical trials for passive immunization in AD, have been recently reported. Results suggest that immunotherapy might be a promising therapeutic approach for neurodegenerative diseases that progress with the accumulation and propagation of toxic protein aggregates. In this manuscript we provide an overview on immunotherapeutic advances for neurodegenerative disorders, with special emphasis on α-synucleinopathies. PMID:23384597

  10. Application of Low Dose Radiation Adaptive Response to Control Aging-Related Disease

    SciTech Connect

    Doss, Mohan

    2013-11-01

    Oxidative damage has been implicated in the pathogenesis of most aging-related diseases including neurodegenerative diseases. Antioxidant supplementation has been found to be ineffective in reducing such diseases, but increased endogenous production of antioxidants from the adaptive response due to physical and cognitive exercises (which increase oxidative metabolism and oxidative stress) has been effective in reducing some of the diseases. Low dose radiation (LDR), which increases oxidative stress and results in adaptive response of increased antioxidants, may provide an alternative method of controlling the aging-related diseases. We have studied the effect of LDR on the induction of adaptive response in rat brains and the effectiveness of the LDR in reducing the oxidative damage caused by subsequent high dose radiation. We have also investigated the effect of LDR on apomorphine-induced rotations in the 6-hydroxydopamine (6-OHDA) unilaterally-lesioned rat model of Parkinson?s disease (PD). LDR was observed to initiate an adaptive response in the brain, and reduce the oxidative damage from subsequent high dose radiation exposure, confirming the effectiveness of LDR adaptive response in reducing the oxidative damage from the free radicals due to high dose radiation. LDR resulted in a slight improvement in Tyrosine hydroxylase expression on the lesioned side of substantia nigra (indicative of its protective effect on the dopaminergic neurons), and reduced the behavioral symptoms in the 6-OHDA rat model of PD. Translation of this concept to humans, if found to be applicable, may be a possible approach for controlling the progression of PD and other neurodegenerative diseases. Since any translation of the concept to humans would be hindered by the currently prevalent carcinogenic concerns regarding LDR based on the linear no-threshold (LNT) model, we have also studied the justifications for the use of the LNT model. One of the shortcomings of the LNT model is that it

  11. The benefits and limitations of animal models for translational research in neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Jucker, Mathias

    2010-11-01

    Age-related neurodegenerative diseases are largely limited to humans and rarely occur spontaneously in animals. Genetically engineered mouse models recapitulate aspects of the corresponding human diseases and are instrumental in studying disease mechanisms and testing therapeutic strategies. If considered within the range of their validity, mouse models have been predictive of clinical outcome. Translational failure is less the result of the incomplete nature of the models than of inadequate preclinical studies and misinterpretation of the models. This commentary summarizes current models and highlights key questions we should be asking about animal models, as well as questions that cannot be answered with the current models.

  12. Aging Changes in Retinal Microglia and their Relevance to Age-related Retinal Disease.

    PubMed

    Ma, Wenxin; Wong, Wai T

    2016-01-01

    Age-related retinal diseases, such as age-related macular degeneration (AMD) and glaucoma, contain features of chronic retinal inflammation that may promote disease progression. However, the relationship between aging and neuroinflammation is unclear. Microglia are long-lived, resident immune cells of the retina, and mediate local neuroinflammatory reactions. We hypothesize that aging changes in microglia may be causally linked to neuroinflammatory changes underlying age-dependent retinal diseases. Here, we review the evidence for (1) how the retinal microglial phenotype changes with aging, (2) the factors that drive microglial aging in the retina, and (3) aging-related changes in microglial gene expression. We examine how these aspects of microglial aging changes may relate to pathogenic mechanisms of immune dysregulation driving the progression of age-related retinal disease. These relationships can highlight microglial aging as a novel target for the prevention and treatment of retinal disease.

  13. Genetic variants associated with neurodegenerative Alzheimer disease in natural models.

    PubMed

    Salazar, Claudia; Valdivia, Gonzalo; Ardiles, Álvaro O; Ewer, John; Palacios, Adrián G

    2016-01-01

    The use of transgenic models for the study of neurodegenerative diseases has made valuable contributions to the field. However, some important limitations, including protein overexpression and general systemic compensation for the missing genes, has caused researchers to seek natural models that show the main biomarkers of neurodegenerative diseases during aging. Here we review some of these models-most of them rodents, focusing especially on the genetic variations in biomarkers for Alzheimer diseases, in order to explain their relationships with variants associated with the occurrence of the disease in humans. PMID:26919851

  14. From target identification to drug screening assays for neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Zuccato, Chiara; Tartari, Marzia; Goffredo, Donato; Cattaneo, Elena; Rigamonti, Dorotea

    2005-09-01

    Treatment of neurodegenerative diseases represents a major challenge for the pharmaceutical industry. Key to developing novel and efficacious therapeutics is the discovery of new druggable targets. Toward this aim, the current drug discovery process is strongly relying on the improved understanding of disease mechanisms and on a synergistic approach with chemistry, molecular biology and robotics. In this scenario, we present the case of a newly discovered molecular mechanism that may be of interest for drug discovery programmes in Huntington's disease and other neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:15916902

  15. Biomarker Discovery in Neurodegenerative Diseases: A Proteomic Approach

    PubMed Central

    Shi, Min; Caudle, W. Michael; Zhang, Jing

    2010-01-01

    Biomarkers for neurodegenerative disorders are essential to facilitate disease diagnosis, ideally at early stages, monitor disease progression, and assess response to existing and future treatments. Application of proteomics to the human brain, cerebrospinal fluid and plasma has greatly hastened the unbiased and high-throughput searches for novel biomarkers. There are many steps critical to biomarker discovery, whether for neurodegenerative or other diseases, including sample preparation, protein/peptide separation and identification, as well as independent confirmation and validation. In this review we have summarized current proteomics technologies involved in discovery of biomarkers for neurodegenerative diseases, practical considerations and limitations of several major aspects, as well as the current status of candidate biomarkers revealed by proteomics for Alzheimer and Parkinson diseases. PMID:18938247

  16. Cytoplasmic dynein: a key player in neurodegenerative and neurodevelopmental diseases.

    PubMed

    Chen, Xiang-Jun; Xu, Huan; Cooper, Helen M; Liu, Yaobo

    2014-04-01

    Cytoplasmic dynein is the most important molecular motor driving the movement of a wide range of cargoes towards the minus ends of microtubules. As a molecular motor protein, dynein performs a variety of basic cellular functions including organelle transport and centrosome assembly. In the nervous system, dynein has been demonstrated to be responsible for axonal retrograde transport. Many studies have revealed direct or indirect evidence of dynein in neurodegenerative diseases such as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease, Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease and Huntington's disease. Among them, a number of mutant proteins involved in various neurodegenerative diseases interact with dynein. Axonal transport disruption is presented as a common feature occurring in neurodegenerative diseases. Dynein heavy chain mutant mice also show features of neurodegenerative diseases. Moreover, defects of dynein-dependent processes such as autophagy or clearance of aggregation-prone proteins are found in most of these diseases. Lines of evidence have also shown that dynein is associated with neurodevelopmental diseases. In this review, we focus on dynein involvement in different neurological diseases and discuss potential underlying mechanisms.

  17. Oxidative stress treatment for clinical trials in neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Ienco, Elena Caldarazzo; LoGerfo, Annalisa; Carlesi, Cecilia; Orsucci, Daniele; Ricci, Giulia; Mancuso, Michelangelo; Siciliano, Gabriele

    2011-01-01

    Oxidative stress is a metabolic condition arising from imbalance between the production of potentially reactive oxygen species and the scavenging activities. Mitochondria are the main providers but also the main scavengers of cell oxidative stress. The role of mitochondrial dysfunction and oxidative stress in the pathogenesis of neurodegenerative diseases is well documented. Therefore, therapeutic approaches targeting mitochondrial dysfunction and oxidative damage hold great promise in neurodegenerative diseases. Despite this evidence, human experience with antioxidant neuroprotectants has generally been negative with regards to the clinical progress of disease, with unclear results in biochemical assays. Here we review the antioxidant approaches performed so far in neurodegenerative diseases and the future challenges in modern medicine. PMID:21422516

  18. Contributions of isolated Pacific populations to understanding neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Garruto, Ralph M; Yanagihara, Richard

    2009-01-01

    Isolated human populations have provided a natural experimental laboratory for the ongoing study of human disease. In the mid-20th century a number of high-incidence foci of neurodegenerative diseases were brought to medical attention including kuru, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, and parkinsonism-dementia. These foci were discovered in Papua New Guinea, West New Guinea, the Kii Peninsula of Japan, and in the Mariana Islands. The study of these diseases in isolated human groups has significantly contributed to our understanding of the cause and mechanisms of pathogenesis of these and related neurodegenerative disorders globally. This paper is dedicated to D. Carleton Gajdusek, a pioneer in the study of neurodegenerative diseases, whose decades of fieldwork and laboratory studies have led to numerous scientific discoveries that have reshaped our thinking and understanding about neurodegeneration.

  19. Alzheimer’s Disease and Age-Related Memory Decline (Preclinical)

    PubMed Central

    Terry, Alvin V.; Callahan, Patrick M.; Hall, Brandon; Webster, Scott J.

    2011-01-01

    An unfortunate result of the rapid rise in geriatric populations worldwide is the increasing prevalence of age-related cognitive disorders such as Alzheimer’s disease (AD). AD is a devastating neurodegenerative illness that is characterized by a profound impairment of cognitive function, marked physical disability, and an enormous economic burden on the afflicted individual, caregivers, and society in general. The rise in elderly populations is also resulting in an increase in individuals with related (potentially treatable) conditions such as “Mild Cognitive Impairment” (MCI) which is characterized by a less severe (but abnormal) level of cognitive impairment and a high-risk for developing dementia. Even in the absence of a diagnosable disorder of cognition (e.g., AD, MCI), the perception of increased forgetfulness and declining mental function is a clear source of apprehension in the elderly. This is a valid concern given that even a modest impairment of cognitive function is likely to be associated with significant disability in a rapidly evolving, technology-based society. Unfortunately, the currently available therapies designed to improve cognition (i.e., for AD and other forms of dementia) are limited by modest efficacy, adverse side effects, and their effects on cognitive function are not sustained over time. Accordingly, it is incumbent on the scientific community to develop safer and more effective therapies that improve and/or sustain cognitive function in the elderly allowing them to remain mentally active and productive for as long as possible. As diagnostic criteria for memory disorders evolve, the demand for pro-cognitive therapeutic agents is likely to surpass AD and dementia to include MCI and potentially even less severe forms of memory decline. The purpose of this review is to provide an overview of the contemporary therapeutic targets and preclinical pharmacologic approaches (with representative drug examples) designed to enhance memory

  20. Caloric restriction and the precision-control of autophagy: A strategy for delaying neurodegenerative disease progression.

    PubMed

    Ntsapi, C; Loos, B

    2016-10-01

    Caloric restriction (CR) is known to extend lifespan in most organisms, indicating that nutrient and energy regulatory mechanisms impact aging. The greatest risk factor for neurodegeneration is age; thus, the antiaging effects of CR might attenuate progressive cell death and avert the aggregation of abnormal proteins associated with neurodegenerative diseases. CR is a potent inducer of autophagy, a tightly regulated intracellular process that facilitates recycling of abnormal protein aggregates and damaged organelles into bioenergetic and biosynthetic materials to maintain homeostasis. Thus, dysregulated autophagy can lead to cellular dysfunction, abnormal protein accumulation, proteotoxicity and subsequently the onset of several neurodegenerative diseases. Therefore, the targeted and precision-controlled activation of autophagy represents a promising therapeutic strategy. Non-pharmacological therapeutic interventions that delay aging by modulating specific stages of autophagy might be beneficial against premature aging, neurodegeneration and its associated ailments. However, the dynamic and often compensatory cross-talk that exists between the protein degradation pathways makes clinical translational approaches challenging. Here we review the primary autophagy pathways in the context of age-related neurodegenerative diseases, focusing on compensatory mechanisms and pathway failure. By critically assessing each underlying molecular machinery, we reveal their impact on aging and unmask the role of caloric restriction in changing cellular fate by delayed aging through stimulation of autophagy. This may point towards novel and better targeted interventions that exploit the autophagic machinery in the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases.

  1. Caloric restriction and the precision-control of autophagy: A strategy for delaying neurodegenerative disease progression.

    PubMed

    Ntsapi, C; Loos, B

    2016-10-01

    Caloric restriction (CR) is known to extend lifespan in most organisms, indicating that nutrient and energy regulatory mechanisms impact aging. The greatest risk factor for neurodegeneration is age; thus, the antiaging effects of CR might attenuate progressive cell death and avert the aggregation of abnormal proteins associated with neurodegenerative diseases. CR is a potent inducer of autophagy, a tightly regulated intracellular process that facilitates recycling of abnormal protein aggregates and damaged organelles into bioenergetic and biosynthetic materials to maintain homeostasis. Thus, dysregulated autophagy can lead to cellular dysfunction, abnormal protein accumulation, proteotoxicity and subsequently the onset of several neurodegenerative diseases. Therefore, the targeted and precision-controlled activation of autophagy represents a promising therapeutic strategy. Non-pharmacological therapeutic interventions that delay aging by modulating specific stages of autophagy might be beneficial against premature aging, neurodegeneration and its associated ailments. However, the dynamic and often compensatory cross-talk that exists between the protein degradation pathways makes clinical translational approaches challenging. Here we review the primary autophagy pathways in the context of age-related neurodegenerative diseases, focusing on compensatory mechanisms and pathway failure. By critically assessing each underlying molecular machinery, we reveal their impact on aging and unmask the role of caloric restriction in changing cellular fate by delayed aging through stimulation of autophagy. This may point towards novel and better targeted interventions that exploit the autophagic machinery in the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:27473756

  2. Pleiotropic Meta-Analyses of Longitudinal Studies Discover Novel Genetic Variants Associated with Age-Related Diseases

    PubMed Central

    He, Liang; Kernogitski, Yelena; Kulminskaya, Irina; Loika, Yury; Arbeev, Konstantin G.; Loiko, Elena; Bagley, Olivia; Duan, Matt; Yashkin, Arseniy; Ukraintseva, Svetlana V.; Kovtun, Mikhail; Yashin, Anatoliy I.; Kulminski, Alexander M.

    2016-01-01

    Age-related diseases may result from shared biological mechanisms in intrinsic processes of aging. Genetic effects on age-related diseases are often modulated by environmental factors due to their little contribution to fitness or are mediated through certain endophenotypes. Identification of genetic variants with pleiotropic effects on both common complex diseases and endophenotypes may reveal potential conflicting evolutionary pressures and deliver new insights into shared genetic contribution to healthspan and lifespan. Here, we performed pleiotropic meta-analyses of genetic variants using five NIH-funded datasets by integrating univariate summary statistics for age-related diseases and endophenotypes. We investigated three groups of traits: (1) endophenotypes such as blood glucose, blood pressure, lipids, hematocrit, and body mass index, (2) time-to-event outcomes such as the age-at-onset of diabetes mellitus (DM), cancer, cardiovascular diseases (CVDs) and neurodegenerative diseases (NDs), and (3) both combined. In addition to replicating previous findings, we identify seven novel genome-wide significant loci (< 5e-08), out of which five are low-frequency variants. Specifically, from Group 2, we find rs7632505 on 3q21.1 in SEMA5B, rs460976 on 21q22.3 (1 kb from TMPRSS2) and rs12420422 on 11q24.1 predominantly associated with a variety of CVDs, rs4905014 in ITPK1 associated with stroke and heart failure, rs7081476 on 10p12.1 in ANKRD26 associated with multiple diseases including DM, CVDs, and NDs. From Group 3, we find rs8082812 on 18p11.22 and rs1869717 on 4q31.3 associated with both endophenotypes and CVDs. Our follow-up analyses show that rs7632505, rs4905014, and rs8082812 have age-dependent effects on coronary heart disease or stroke. Functional annotation suggests that most of these SNPs are within regulatory regions or DNase clusters and in linkage disequilibrium with expression quantitative trait loci, implying their potential regulatory influence on

  3. Neuroinflamm-aging and neurodegenerative diseases: an overview.

    PubMed

    Pizza, Vincenzo; Agresta, Anella; D'Acunto, Cosimo W; Festa, Michela; Capasso, Anna

    2011-08-01

    Neuroinflammation is considered a chronic activation of the immune response in the central nervous system (CNS) in response to different injuries. This brain immune activation results in various events: circulating immune cells infiltrate the CNS; resident cells are activated; and pro-inflammatory mediators produced and released induce neuroinflammatory brain disease. The effect of immune diffusible mediators on synaptic plasticity might result in CNS dysfunction during neuroinflammatory brain diseases. The CNS dysfunction may induce several human pathological conditions associated with both cognitive impairment and a variable degree of neuroinflammation. Furthermore, age has a powerful effect on enhanced susceptibility to neurodegenerative diseases and age-dependent enhanced neuroinflammatory processes may play an important role in toxin generation that causes death or dysfunction of neurons in neurodegenerative diseases This review will address current understanding of the relationship between ageing, neuroinflammation and neurodegenerative disease by focusing on the principal mechanisms by which the immune system influences the brain plastic phenomena. Also, the present review considers the principal human neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, Huntington's disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, multiple sclerosis and psychiatric disorders caused by aging and neuroinflammation.

  4. Neuropeptide Y (NPY) as a therapeutic target for neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Duarte-Neves, Joana; Pereira de Almeida, Luís; Cavadas, Cláudia

    2016-11-01

    Neuropeptide Y (NPY) and NPY receptors are widely expressed in the mammalian central nervous system. Studies in both humans and rodent models revealed that brain NPY levels are altered in some neurodegenerative disorders, such as Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, Huntington's disease and Machado-Joseph disease. In this review, we will focus on the roles of NPY in the pathological mechanisms of these disorders, highlighting NPY as a neuroprotective agent, as a neural stem cell proliferative agent, as an agent that increases trophic support, as a stimulator of autophagy and as an inhibitor of excitotoxicity and neuroinflammation. Moreover, the effect of NPY in some clinical manifestations commonly observed in Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, Huntington's disease and Machado-Joseph disease, such as depressive symptoms and body weight loss, are also discussed. In conclusion, this review highlights NPY system as a potential therapeutic target in neurodegenerative diseases.

  5. Microtubule-Stabilizing Agents as Potential Therapeutics for Neurodegenerative Disease

    PubMed Central

    Brunden, Kurt R.; Trojanowski, John Q.; Smith, Amos B.; Lee, Virginia M.-Y.; Ballatore, Carlo

    2014-01-01

    Microtubules (MTs)1, cytoskeletal elements found in all mammalian cells, play a significant role in cell structure and in cell division. They are especially critical in the proper functioning of post-mitotic central nervous system neurons, where MTs serve as the structures on which key cellular constituents are trafficked in axonal projections. MTs are stabilized in axons by the MT-associated protein tau, and in several neurodegenerative diseases, including Alzheimer’s disease, frontotemporal lobar degeneration, and Parkinson’s disease, tau function appears to be compromised due to the protein dissociating from MTs and depositing into insoluble inclusions referred to as neurofibrillary tangles. This loss of tau function is believed to result in alterations of MT structure and function, resulting in aberrant axonal transport that likely contributes to the neurodegenerative process. There is also evidence of axonal transport deficiencies in other neurodegenerative diseases, including amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and Huntington’s disease, which may result, at least in part, from MT alterations. Accordingly, a possible therapeutic strategy for such neurodegenerative conditions is to treat with MT-stabilizing agents, such as those that have been used in the treatment of cancer. Here, we review evidence of axonal transport and MT deficiencies in a number of neurodegenerative diseases, and summarize the various classes of known MT-stabilizing agents. Finally, we highlight the growing evidence that small molecule MT-stabilizing agents provide benefit in animal models of neurodegenerative disease and discuss the desired features of such molecules for the treatment of these central nervous system disorders. PMID:24433963

  6. Molecular Chaperone Dysfunction in Neurodegenerative Diseases and Effects of Curcumin

    PubMed Central

    Frautschy, Sally

    2014-01-01

    The intra- and extracellular accumulation of misfolded and aggregated amyloid proteins is a common feature in several neurodegenerative diseases, which is thought to play a major role in disease severity and progression. The principal machineries maintaining proteostasis are the ubiquitin proteasomal and lysosomal autophagy systems, where heat shock proteins play a crucial role. Many protein aggregates are degraded by the lysosomes, depending on aggregate size, peptide sequence, and degree of misfolding, while others are selectively tagged for removal by heat shock proteins and degraded by either the proteasome or phagosomes. These systems are compromised in different neurodegenerative diseases. Therefore, developing novel targets and classes of therapeutic drugs, which can reduce aggregates and maintain proteostasis in the brains of neurodegenerative models, is vital. Natural products that can modulate heat shock proteins/proteosomal pathway are considered promising for treating neurodegenerative diseases. Here we discuss the current knowledge on the role of HSPs in protein misfolding diseases and knowledge gained from animal models of Alzheimer's disease, tauopathies, and Huntington's diseases. Further, we discuss the emerging treatment regimens for these diseases using natural products, like curcumin, which can augment expression or function of heat shock proteins in the cell. PMID:25386560

  7. RNA processing-associated molecular mechanisms of neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Tang, Anna Y

    2016-08-01

    Dysfunctions of RNA processing and mutations of RNA binding proteins (RBPs) play a fundamental role in the pathogenesis of many neurodegenerative diseases. To elucidate the function of RNA processing and RBPs mutations in neuronal cells and to increase our understanding on the pathogenic mechanisms of neurodegeneration, I have reviewed recent advances on RNA processing-associated molecular mechanisms of neurodegenerative diseases, including RBPs-mediated dysfunction of RNA processing, dysfunctional microRNA (miRNA)-based regulation of gene expression, and oxidative RNA modification. I have focused on neurodegeneration induced by RBPs mutations, by dysfunction of miRNA regulation, and by the oxidized RNAs within neurons, and discuss how these dysfunctions have pathologically contributed to neurodegenerative diseases. The advances overviewed above will be valuable to basic investigation and clinical application of target diagnostic tests and therapies.

  8. Neural stem cell-based treatment for neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Kim, Seung U; Lee, Hong J; Kim, Yun B

    2013-10-01

    Human neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson's disease (PD), Huntington's disease (HD), amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and Alzheimer's disease (AD) are caused by a loss of neurons and glia in the brain or spinal cord. Neurons and glial cells have successfully been generated from stem cells such as embryonic stem cells (ESCs), mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) and neural stem cells (NSCs), and stem cell-based cell therapies for neurodegenerative diseases have been developed. A recent advance in generation of a new class of pluripotent stem cells, induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs), derived from patients' own skin fibroblasts, opens doors for a totally new field of personalized medicine. Transplantation of NSCs, neurons or glia generated from stem cells in animal models of neurodegenerative diseases, including PD, HD, ALS and AD, demonstrates clinical improvement and also life extension of these animals. Additional therapeutic benefits in these animals can be provided by stem cell-mediated gene transfer of therapeutic genes such as neurotrophic factors and enzymes. Although further research is still needed, cell and gene therapy based on stem cells, particularly using neurons and glia derived from iPSCs, ESCs or NSCs, will become a routine treatment for patients suffering from neurodegenerative diseases and also stroke and spinal cord injury.

  9. The role of mitochondria in inherited neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Kwong, Jennifer Q; Beal, M Flint; Manfredi, Giovanni

    2006-06-01

    In the past decade, the genetic causes underlying familial forms of many neurodegenerative disorders, such as Huntington's disease, Parkinson's disease, Alzheimer's disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, Friedreich ataxia, hereditary spastic paraplegia, dominant optic atrophy, Charcot-Marie-Tooth type 2A, neuropathy ataxia and retinitis pigmentosa, and Leber's hereditary optic atrophy have been elucidated. However, the common pathogenic mechanisms of neuronal death are still largely unknown. Recently, mitochondrial dysfunction has emerged as a potential 'lowest common denominator' linking these disorders. In this review, we discuss the body of evidence supporting the role of mitochondria in the pathogenesis of hereditary neurodegenerative diseases. We summarize the principal features of genetic diseases caused by abnormalities of mitochondrial proteins encoded by the mitochondrial or the nuclear genomes. We then address genetic diseases where mutant proteins are localized in multiple cell compartments, including mitochondria and where mitochondrial defects are likely to be directly caused by the mutant proteins. Finally, we describe examples of neurodegenerative disorders where mitochondrial dysfunction may be 'secondary' and probably concomitant with degenerative events in other cell organelles, but may still play an important role in the neuronal decay. Understanding the contribution of mitochondrial dysfunction to neurodegeneration and its pathophysiological basis will significantly impact our ability to develop more effective therapies for neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:16805775

  10. What can pluripotent stem cells teach us about neurodegenerative diseases?

    PubMed

    Wichterle, Hynek; Przedborski, Serge

    2010-07-01

    Neurodegenerative diseases represent a growing public health challenge. Current medications treat symptoms, but none halt or retard neurodegeneration. The recent advent of pluripotent cell biology has opened new avenues for neurodegenerative disease research. The greatest potential for induced pluripotent cells derived from affected individuals is likely to be their utility for modeling and understanding the mechanisms underlying neurodegenerative processes, and for searching for new treatments, including cell replacement therapies. However, much work remains to be done before pluripotent cells can be used for preclinical and clinical applications. Here we discuss the challenges of generating specific neural cell subtypes from pluripotent stem cells, the use of pluripotent stem cells to model both cell-autonomous and non-cell-autonomous mechanisms of neurodegeneration, whether adult-onset neurodegeneration can be emulated in short-term cultures and the hurdles of cell replacement therapy. Progress in these four areas will substantially accelerate effective application of pluripotent stem cells.

  11. Adult neurogenesis in the olfactory system and neurodegenerative disease.

    PubMed

    Gallarda, B W; Lledo, P-M

    2012-12-01

    The olfactory system is unique in many respects-two of which include the process of adult neurogenesis which continually supplies it with newborn neurons, and the fact that neurodegenerative diseases are often accompanied by a loss of smell. A link between these two phenomena has been hypothesized, but recent evidence for the lack of robust adult neurogenesis in the human olfactory system calls into question this hypothesis. Nevertheless, model organisms continue to play a critical role in the exploration of neurodegenerative disease. In part one of this review we discuss the most promising recent technological advancements for studying adult neurogenesis in the murine olfactory system. Part two continues by looking at emerging evidence related to adult neurogenesis in neurodegenerative disease studied in model organisms and the differences between animal and human olfactory system adult neurogenesis. Hopefully, the careful application of advanced research methods to the study of neurodegenerative disease in model organisms, while taking into account the recently reported differences between the human and model organism olfactory system, will lead to a better understanding of the reasons for the susceptibility of olfaction to disease.

  12. Mesenchymal stem cells: a revolution in therapeutic strategies of age-related diseases.

    PubMed

    Peng, Yan; Huang, Sha; Cheng, Biao; Nie, Xiaohu; Enhe, Jirigala; Feng, Changjiang; Fu, Xiaobing

    2013-01-01

    The great evolutionary biologist Theodosius Dobzhansky once said: "Nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of evolution". Aging is a complex biological phenomenon and the factors governing the process of aging and age-related diseases are only beginning to be understood, oxidative stress, telomere shortening in DNA components and genetic changes were shown to be the mainly regulating mechanisms during the recent decades. Although a considerable amount of both animal and clinical data that demonstrate the extensive and safe use of mesenchymal stromal cells (MSCs) is available, the precise summarization and identification of MSCs in age-related diseases remains a challenge. Along this line, this review discussed several typical age-related diseases for which MSCs have been proved to confer protection and put forward a hypothesis for the association among MSCs and age-related diseases from an evolutionary perspective. Above all, we hope further and more research efforts could be aroused to elucidate the role and mechanisms that MSCs involved in the age-related diseases.

  13. Mass spectrometric analysis of protein tyrosine nitration in aging and neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Yeo, Woon-Seok; Kim, Young Jun; Kabir, Mohammad Humayun; Kang, Jeong Won; Ahsan-Ul-Bari, Md; Kim, Kwang Pyo

    2015-01-01

    This review highlights the significance of protein tyrosine nitration (PTN) in signal transduction pathways, the progress achieved in analytical methods, and the implication of nitration in the cellular pathophysiology of aging and age-related neurodegenerative diseases. Although mass spectrometry of nitrated peptides has become a powerful tool for the characterization of nitrated peptides, the low stoichiometry of this modification clearly necessitates the use of affinity chromatography to enrich modified peptides. Analysis of nitropeptides involves identification of endogenous, intact modification as well as chemical conversion of the nitro group to a chemically reactive amine group and further modifications that enable affinity capture and enhance detectability by altering molecular properties. In this review, we focus on the recent progress in chemical derivatization of nitropeptides for enrichment and mass analysis, and for detection and quantification using various analytical tools. PTN participates in physiological processes, such as aging and neurodegenerative diseases. Accumulation of 3-nitrotyrosine has been found to occur during the aging process; this was identified through mass spectrometry. Further, there are several studies implicating the presence of nitrated tyrosine in age-related diseases such as Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. PMID:24889964

  14. Pharmacotherapy for Neurodegenerative Diseases: Are We Approaching the Tipping Point?

    PubMed

    Honig, P K

    2015-11-01

    Neurodegenerative diseases continue to represent major unmet medical and public health needs and will increasingly strain the healthcare system as people live longer due to medical advances in other diseases. Hopefully the emergence of increased understanding of the biology of these conditions coupled with novel clinical pharmacology tools, clinical trial designs, and regulatory innovation will allow the emergence of highly effective symptomatic and disease modifying pharmacotherapies. PMID:26478996

  15. Sign Language Aphasia from a Neurodegenerative Disease

    PubMed Central

    Falchook, Adam D.; Mayberry, Rachel I.; Poizner, Howard; Burtis, David Brandon; Doty, Leilani; Heilman, Kenneth M.

    2012-01-01

    While Alois Alzheimer recognized the effects of the disease he described on speech and language in his original description of the disease in 1907, the effects of Alzheimer disease on language in deaf signers has not previously been reported. We evaluated a 55 year old right handed congenitally deaf woman with a two year history of progressive memory loss and a deterioration of her ability to communicate in American Sign Language, which she learned at the age of eight. Examination revealed that she had impaired episodic memory as well as marked impairments in the production and comprehension of fingerspelling and grammatically complex sentences. She also had signs of anomia as well as an ideomotor apraxia and visual-spatial dysfunction. This report illustrates the challenges in evaluation of a patient for the presence of degenerative dementia when the person is deaf from birth, uses sign language, and has a late age of primary language acquisition. Although our patient could neither speak nor hear, in many respects her cognitive disorders mirror those of patients with Alzheimer disease who had normally learned to speak. PMID:22823942

  16. Reverse engineering human neurodegenerative disease using pluripotent stem cell technology.

    PubMed

    Liu, Ying; Deng, Wenbin

    2016-05-01

    With the technology of reprogramming somatic cells by introducing defined transcription factors that enables the generation of "induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs)" with pluripotency comparable to that of embryonic stem cells (ESCs), it has become possible to use this technology to produce various cells and tissues that have been difficult to obtain from living bodies. This advancement is bringing forth rapid progress in iPSC-based disease modeling, drug screening, and regenerative medicine. More and more studies have demonstrated that phenotypes of adult-onset neurodegenerative disorders could be rather faithfully recapitulated in iPSC-derived neural cell cultures. Moreover, despite the adult-onset nature of the diseases, pathogenic phenotypes and cellular abnormalities often exist in early developmental stages, providing new "windows of opportunity" for understanding mechanisms underlying neurodegenerative disorders and for discovering new medicines. The cell reprogramming technology enables a reverse engineering approach for modeling the cellular degenerative phenotypes of a wide range of human disorders. An excellent example is the study of the human neurodegenerative disease amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) using iPSCs. ALS is a progressive neurodegenerative disease characterized by the loss of upper and lower motor neurons (MNs), culminating in muscle wasting and death from respiratory failure. The iPSC approach provides innovative cell culture platforms to serve as ALS patient-derived model systems. Researchers have converted iPSCs derived from ALS patients into MNs and various types of glial cells, all of which are involved in ALS, to study the disease. The iPSC technology could be used to determine the role of specific genetic factors to track down what's wrong in the neurodegenerative disease process in the "disease-in-a-dish" model. Meanwhile, parallel experiments of targeting the same specific genes in human ESCs could also be performed to control

  17. Les Liaisons Dangereuses: Cancer-Related Genes and Neurodegenerative Diseases

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ghetti, Bernardino; Buonaguro, Franco M.

    2014-07-01

    The following sections are included: * INTRODUCTION * MUTATIONS IN THE CSF1R GENE ASSOCIATED WITH DIFFUSE LEUKOENCEPHALOPATHY WITH SPHEROIDS AND HUMAN CANCERS. * A SPECIAL LINK HAS BEEN SHOWN BETWEEN PTEN AND AD. * ACETYLCHOLINE DEFICIENCY AND PATHOGENESIS OF AD. * MIRNAS AND COMMON PATHWAYS IN CANCER AND NEURODEGENERATIVE DISEASE. * SUMMARY * REFERENCES

  18. [Caregivers of people with neurodegenerative diseases: from help to delegation].

    PubMed

    Delzescaux, Sabine; Blondel, Frédéric

    2015-01-01

    Being a caregiver is difficult, even more so when it comes to helping people with a neurodegenerative disease. These caregivers, either family members or close friends, are confronted with an unexpected delegation which can prove to be highly complex as the pitfalls can indeed be significant. Moreover, the support the caregivers can provide depends on the support they can get for themselves. PMID:26364815

  19. Alzheimer's disease: An acquired neurodegenerative laminopathy

    PubMed Central

    Frost, Bess

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT The nucleus is typically depicted as a sphere encircled by a smooth surface of nuclear envelope. For most cell types, this depiction is accurate. In other cell types and in some pathological conditions, however, the smooth nuclear exterior is interrupted by tubular invaginations of the nuclear envelope, often referred to as a “nucleoplasmic reticulum,” into the deep nuclear interior. We have recently reported a significant expansion of the nucleoplasmic reticulum in postmortem human Alzheimer's disease brain tissue. We found that dysfunction of the nucleoskeleton, a lamin-rich meshwork that coats the inner nuclear membrane and associated invaginations, is causal for Alzheimer's disease-related neurodegeneration in vivo. Additionally, we demonstrated that proper function of the nucleoskeleton is required for survival of adult neurons and maintaining genomic architecture. Here, we elaborate on the significance of these findings in regard to pathological states and physiological aging, and discuss cellular causes and consequences of nuclear envelope invagination. PMID:27167528

  20. Alzheimer's disease: An acquired neurodegenerative laminopathy.

    PubMed

    Frost, Bess

    2016-05-01

    The nucleus is typically depicted as a sphere encircled by a smooth surface of nuclear envelope. For most cell types, this depiction is accurate. In other cell types and in some pathological conditions, however, the smooth nuclear exterior is interrupted by tubular invaginations of the nuclear envelope, often referred to as a "nucleoplasmic reticulum," into the deep nuclear interior. We have recently reported a significant expansion of the nucleoplasmic reticulum in postmortem human Alzheimer's disease brain tissue. We found that dysfunction of the nucleoskeleton, a lamin-rich meshwork that coats the inner nuclear membrane and associated invaginations, is causal for Alzheimer's disease-related neurodegeneration in vivo. Additionally, we demonstrated that proper function of the nucleoskeleton is required for survival of adult neurons and maintaining genomic architecture. Here, we elaborate on the significance of these findings in regard to pathological states and physiological aging, and discuss cellular causes and consequences of nuclear envelope invagination.

  1. Alzheimer's disease: An acquired neurodegenerative laminopathy.

    PubMed

    Frost, Bess

    2016-05-01

    The nucleus is typically depicted as a sphere encircled by a smooth surface of nuclear envelope. For most cell types, this depiction is accurate. In other cell types and in some pathological conditions, however, the smooth nuclear exterior is interrupted by tubular invaginations of the nuclear envelope, often referred to as a "nucleoplasmic reticulum," into the deep nuclear interior. We have recently reported a significant expansion of the nucleoplasmic reticulum in postmortem human Alzheimer's disease brain tissue. We found that dysfunction of the nucleoskeleton, a lamin-rich meshwork that coats the inner nuclear membrane and associated invaginations, is causal for Alzheimer's disease-related neurodegeneration in vivo. Additionally, we demonstrated that proper function of the nucleoskeleton is required for survival of adult neurons and maintaining genomic architecture. Here, we elaborate on the significance of these findings in regard to pathological states and physiological aging, and discuss cellular causes and consequences of nuclear envelope invagination. PMID:27167528

  2. Adverse Childhood Experiences and Adult Risk Factors for Age-Related Disease

    PubMed Central

    Danese, Andrea; Moffitt, Terrie E.; Harrington, HonaLee; Milne, Barry J.; Polanczyk, Guilherme; Pariante, Carmine M.; Poulton, Richie; Caspi, Avshalom

    2013-01-01

    Objective To understand why children exposed to adverse psychosocial experiences are at elevated risk for age-related disease, such as cardiovascular disease, by testing whether adverse childhood experiences predict enduring abnormalities in stress-sensitive biological systems, namely, the nervous, immune, and endocrine/metabolic systems. Design A 32-year prospective longitudinal study of a representative birth cohort. Setting New Zealand. Participants A total of 1037 members of the Dunedin Multidisciplinary Health and Development Study. Main Exposures During their first decade of life, study members were assessed for exposure to 3 adverse psychosocial experiences: socioeconomic disadvantage, maltreatment, and social isolation. Main Outcome Measures At age 32 years, study members were assessed for the presence of 3 age-related-disease risks: major depression, high inflammation levels (high-sensitivity C-reactive protein level >3 mg/L), and the clustering of metabolic risk biomarkers (overweight, high blood pressure, high total cholesterol, low high-density lipoprotein cholesterol, high glycated hemoglobin, and low maximum oxygen consumption levels. Results Children exposed to adverse psychosocial experiences were at elevated risk of depression, high inflammation levels, and clustering of metabolic risk markers. Children who had experienced socioeconomic disadvantage (incidence rate ratio, 1.89; 95% confidence interval, 1.36–2.62), maltreatment (1.81; 1.38–2.38), or social isolation (1.87; 1.38–2.51) had elevated age-related-disease risks in adulthood. The effects of adverse childhood experiences on age-related-disease risks in adulthood were nonredundant, cumulative, and independent of the influence of established developmental and concurrent risk factors. Conclusions Children exposed to adverse psychosocial experiences have enduring emotional, immune, and metabolic abnormalities that contribute to explaining their elevated risk for age-related disease. The

  3. Summary of cerebrospinal fluid routine parameters in neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Jesse, Sarah; Brettschneider, Johannes; Süssmuth, Sigurd D; Landwehrmeyer, Bernhard G; von Arnim, Christine A F; Ludolph, Albert C; Tumani, Hayrettin; Otto, Markus

    2011-06-01

    In neurodegenerative diseases, cerebrospinal fluid analysis (CSF) is predominantly performed to exclude inflammatory diseases and to perform a risk assessment in dementive disorders by measurement of tau proteins and amyloid beta peptides. However, large scale data on basic findings of CSF routine parameters are generally lacking. The objective of the study was to define a normal reference spectrum of routine CSF parameters in neurodegenerative diseases. Routine CSF parameters (white cell count, lactate and albumin concentrations, CSF/serum quotients of albumin (Q (alb)), IgG, IgA, IgM, and oligoclonal IgG bands (OCB)) were retrospectively analyzed in an academic research setting. A total of 765 patients (Alzheimer's disease (AD), Parkinson's disease (PD), Parkinson's disease dementia (PDD), vascular dementia (VD), frontotemporal lobar degeneration (FTLD), progressive supranuclear palsy (PSP), multisystem atrophy (MSA), motor neuron diseases (MND), spinocerebellar ataxia (SCA), Huntington's disease (HD)) and non-demented control groups including a group of patients with muscular disorders (MD). The main outcome measures included statistical analyses of routine CSF parameters. Mildly elevated Q (alb) were found in a small percentage of nearly all subgroups and in a higher proportion of patients with PSP, MSA, VD, PDD, and MND. With the exception of 1 MND patient, no intrathecal Ig synthesis was observed. Isolated OCBs in CSF were sometimes found in patients with neurodegenerative diseases without elevated cell counts; lactate levels were always normal. A slightly elevated Q (alb) was observed in a subgroup of patients with neurodegenerative diseases and does not exclude the diagnosis. Extensive elevation of routine parameters is not characteristic and should encourage a re-evaluation of the clinical diagnosis.

  4. ETHICAL AND GENETIC ASPECTS REGARDING PRESYMPTOMATIC TESTING FOR NEURODEGENERATIVE DISEASES.

    PubMed

    Cozaru, Georgeta Camelial; Aşchie, Mariana; Mitroi, Anca Florentina; Poinăreanu, I; Gorduza, E V

    2016-01-01

    Neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer's dementia, Huntington's chorea, Parkinson's disease or spinocerebellar ataxia, manifests into adulthood with an insidious onset, slowly of progressive symptoms. All of these diseases are characterized by presimptomatic stages that preceded with many years of clinical debut. In Parkinson's disease, more than half of the dopaminergic neurons of the black substance are lost before the advent of motor characteristic manifestations. In Huntington's chorea, the progressive neurodegenerative disease could be diagnose prenatal and presymptomatic by analyse of the number of CAG repeats in exon 1 of the huntingtin gene. A similar mechanism represented by expansion of trinucleotide repeats during hereditary transmission from parents to children was identified in fragile X syndrome, spinocerebellar ataxia, spinal muscular and bulbar atrophy, or myotonic dystrophy. Presymptomatic diagnosis in all these progressive diseases raise many ethical issues, due to the psychological impact that can cause the prediction of a disease for which there is currently no curative treatment. Therefore, a positive result can produce serious psychological trauma and major changes in the lifestyle of the individual, instead, a negative result can bring joy and tranquillity. But the problem arises if presymptomatic testing in these neurodegenerative diseases brings greater benefits compared to the possible psychological damage, which can add the risk of stigmatization or discrimination. PMID:27125067

  5. Human-induced pluripotent stem cells: potential for neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Ross, Christopher A; Akimov, Sergey S

    2014-09-15

    The cell biology of human neurodegenerative diseases has been difficult to study till recently. The development of human induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC) models has greatly enhanced our ability to model disease in human cells. Methods have recently been improved, including increasing reprogramming efficiency, introducing non-viral and non-integrating methods of cell reprogramming, and using novel gene editing techniques for generating genetically corrected lines from patient-derived iPSCs, or for generating mutations in control cell lines. In this review, we highlight accomplishments made using iPSC models to study neurodegenerative disorders such as Huntington's disease, Parkinson's disease, Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, Fronto-Temporal Dementia, Alzheimer's disease, Spinomuscular Atrophy and other polyglutamine diseases. We review disease-related phenotypes shown in patient-derived iPSCs differentiated to relevant neural subtypes, often with stressors or cell "aging", to enhance disease-specific phenotypes. We also discuss prospects for the future of using of iPSC models of neurodegenerative disorders, including screening and testing of therapeutic compounds, and possibly of cell transplantation in regenerative medicine. The new iPSC models have the potential to greatly enhance our understanding of pathogenesis and to facilitate the development of novel therapeutics.

  6. Epigenetic mechanisms in neurological and neurodegenerative diseases

    PubMed Central

    Landgrave-Gómez, Jorge; Mercado-Gómez, Octavio; Guevara-Guzmán, Rosalinda

    2015-01-01

    The role of epigenetic mechanisms in the function and homeostasis of the central nervous system (CNS) and its regulation in diseases is one of the most interesting processes of contemporary neuroscience. In the last decade, a growing body of literature suggests that long-term changes in gene transcription associated with CNS’s regulation and neurological disorders are mediated via modulation of chromatin structure. “Epigenetics”, introduced for the first time by Waddington in the early 1940s, has been traditionally referred to a variety of mechanisms that allow heritable changes in gene expression even in the absence of DNA mutation. However, new definitions acknowledge that many of these mechanisms used to perpetuate epigenetic traits in dividing cells are used by neurons to control a variety of functions dependent on gene expression. Indeed, in the recent years these mechanisms have shown their importance in the maintenance of a healthy CNS. Moreover, environmental inputs that have shown effects in CNS diseases, such as nutrition, that can modulate the concentration of a variety of metabolites such as acetyl-coenzyme A (acetyl-coA), nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD+) and beta hydroxybutyrate (β-HB), regulates some of these epigenetic modifications, linking in a precise way environment with gene expression. This manuscript will portray what is currently understood about the role of epigenetic mechanisms in the function and homeostasis of the CNS and their participation in a variety of neurological disorders. We will discuss how the machinery that controls these modifications plays an important role in processes involved in neurological disorders such as neurogenesis and cell growth. Moreover, we will discuss how environmental inputs modulate these modifications producing metabolic and physiological alterations that could exert beneficial effects on neurological diseases. Finally, we will highlight possible future directions in the field of epigenetics

  7. Quantitative analysis on electrooculography (EOG) for neurodegenerative disease

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Chang-Chia; Chaovalitwongse, W. Art; Pardalos, Panos M.; Seref, Onur; Xanthopoulos, Petros; Sackellares, J. C.; Skidmore, Frank M.

    2007-11-01

    Many studies have documented abnormal horizontal and vertical eye movements in human neurodegenerative disease as well as during altered states of consciousness (including drowsiness and intoxication) in healthy adults. Eye movement measurement may play an important role measuring the progress of neurodegenerative diseases and state of alertness in healthy individuals. There are several techniques for measuring eye movement, Infrared detection technique (IR). Video-oculography (VOG), Scleral eye coil and EOG. Among those available recording techniques, EOG is a major source for monitoring the abnormal eye movement. In this real-time quantitative analysis study, the methods which can capture the characteristic of the eye movement were proposed to accurately categorize the state of neurodegenerative subjects. The EOG recordings were taken while 5 tested subjects were watching a short (>120 s) animation clip. In response to the animated clip the participants executed a number of eye movements, including vertical smooth pursued (SVP), horizontal smooth pursued (HVP) and random saccades (RS). Detection of abnormalities in ocular movement may improve our diagnosis and understanding a neurodegenerative disease and altered states of consciousness. A standard real-time quantitative analysis will improve detection and provide a better understanding of pathology in these disorders.

  8. Protein aggregate spreading in neurodegenerative diseases: Problems and perspectives

    PubMed Central

    Lee, Seung-Jae; Lim, Hee-Sun; Masliah, Eliezer; Lee, He-Jin

    2014-01-01

    Progressive accumulation of specific protein aggregates is a defining feature of many major neurodegenerative diseases, including Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, fronto-temporal dementia, Huntington’s disease, and Creutzfeldt–Jakob disease (CJD). Findings from several recent studies have suggested that aggregation-prone proteins, such as tau, α-synuclein, polyglutamine-containing proteins, and amyloid-β, can spread to other cells and brain regions, a phenomenon considered unique to prion disorders, such as CJD and bovine spongiform encephalopathy. Cell-to-cell propagation of protein aggregates may be the general underlying principle for progressive deterioration of neurodegenerative diseases. This may also have significant implications in cell replacement therapies, as evidenced by the propagation of α-synuclein aggregates from host to grafted cells in long-term transplants in Parkinson’s patients. Here, we review recent progress in protein aggregate propagation in experimental model systems and discuss outstanding questions and future perspectives. Understanding the mechanisms of this pathological spreading may open the way to unique opportunities for development of diagnostic techniques and novel therapies for protein misfolding-associated neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:21624403

  9. Mesenchymal stem cells: potential in treatment of neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Tanna, Tanmay; Sachan, Vatsal

    2014-01-01

    Mesenchymal Stem Cells or Marrow Stromal Cells (MSCs) have long been viewed as a potent tool for regenerative cell therapy. MSCs are easily accessible from both healthy donor and patient tissue and expandable in vitro on a therapeutic scale without posing significant ethical or procedural problems. MSC based therapies have proven to be effective in preclinical studies for graft versus host disease, stroke, myocardial infarction, pulmonary fibrosis, autoimmune disorders and many other conditions and are currently undergoing clinical trials at a number of centers all over the world. MSCs are also being extensively researched as a therapeutic tool against neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's disease (AD), Parkinson's disease (PD), Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), Huntington's disease (HD) and Multiple Sclerosis (MS). MSCs have been discussed with regard to two aspects in the context of neurodegenerative diseases: their ability to transdifferentiate into neural cells under specific conditions and their neuroprotective and immunomodulatory effects. When transplanted into the brain, MSCs produce neurotrophic and growth factors that protect and induce regeneration of damaged tissue. Additionally, MSCs have also been explored as gene delivery vehicles, for example being genetically engineered to over express glial-derived or brain-derived neurotrophic factor in the brain. Clinical trials involving MSCs are currently underway for MS, ALS, traumatic brain injuries, spinal cord injuries and stroke. In the present review, we explore the potential that MSCs hold with regard to the aforementioned neurodegenerative diseases and the current scenario with reference to the same.

  10. [Are we underestimating occupational risks for neurodegenerative diseases?].

    PubMed

    Oddone, Enrico; Imbriani, Marcello

    2015-01-01

    In recent years a great number of studies suggests that occupational exposures could play a role in the onset of some neurodegenerative diseases. The literature data are more numerous for Parkinson's disease, Multiple Sclerosis and Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, although to date no specific occupational exposure was proved to be a definite causal factor. This lack of information is attributable both to the complex patogenesis of these diseases and to a delay regarding this field of research with respect to others pathologies. Nevertheless, available evidence oblige researchers to deepen the studies of occupational exposures as risk factors of neurodegenerative diseases, in order to provide a solid basis possible preventive measures for a class of pathologies with high social impact, both in terms of therapies and in terms of disability.

  11. PET/SPECT imaging agents for neurodegenerative diseases

    PubMed Central

    Zhu, Lin; Ploessl, Karl; Kung, Hank F.

    2014-01-01

    Single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) or positron emission computed tomography (PET) imaging agents for neurodegenerative disease have a significant impact on clinical diagnosis and patient care. The examples of Parkinson’s Disease (PD) and Alzheimer’s Disease (AD) imaging agents described in this paper provide a general view on how imaging agents, ie radioactive drugs, are selected, chemically prepared and applied in humans. Imaging the living human brain can provide unique information on the pathology and progression of neurodegenerative diseases, such as AD and PD. The imaging method will also facilitate preclinical and clinical trials of new drugs offering specific information related to drug binding sites in the brain. In the future, chemists will continue to play important roles in identifying specific targets, synthesizing target-specific probes for screening and ultimately testing them by in vitro and in vivo assays. PMID:24676152

  12. Olfaction in Neurologic and Neurodegenerative Diseases: A Literature Review

    PubMed Central

    Godoy, Maria Dantas Costa Lima; Voegels, Richard Louis; Pinna, Fábio de Rezende; Imamura, Rui; Farfel, José Marcelo

    2014-01-01

    Introduction Loss of smell is involved in various neurologic and neurodegenerative diseases, such as Parkinson disease and Alzheimer disease. However, the olfactory test is usually neglected by physicians at large. Objective The aim of this study was to review the current literature about the relationship between olfactory dysfunction and neurologic and neurodegenerative diseases. Data Synthesis Twenty-seven studies were selected for analysis, and the olfactory system, olfaction, and the association between the olfactory dysfunction and dementias were reviewed. Furthermore, is described an up to date in olfaction. Conclusion Otolaryngologist should remember the importance of olfaction evaluation in daily practice. Furthermore, neurologists and physicians in general should include olfactory tests in the screening of those at higher risk of dementia. PMID:25992176

  13. Extracting regional brain patterns for classification of neurodegenerative diseases

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pulido, Andrea; Rueda, Andrea; Romero, Eduardo

    2013-11-01

    In structural Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI), neurodegenerative diseases generally present complex brain patterns that can be correlated with di erent clinical onsets of this pathologies. An objective method that aims to determine both global and local changes is not usually available in clinical practice, thus the interpretation of these images is strongly dependent on the radiologist's skills. In this paper, we propose a strategy which interprets the brain structure using a framework that highlights discriminant brain patterns for neurodegenerative diseases. This is accomplished by combining a probabilistic learning technique, which identi es and groups regions with similar visual features, with a visual saliency method that exposes relevant information within each region. The association of such patterns with a speci c disease is herein evaluated in a classi cation task, using a dataset including 80 Alzheimer's disease (AD) patients and 76 healthy subjects (NC). Preliminary results show that the proposed method reaches a maximum classi cation accuracy of 81.39%.

  14. A Systematic Investigation into Aging Related Genes in Brain and Their Relationship with Alzheimer's Disease.

    PubMed

    Meng, Guofeng; Zhong, Xiaoyan; Mei, Hongkang

    2016-01-01

    Aging, as a complex biological process, is accompanied by the accumulation of functional loses at different levels, which makes age to be the biggest risk factor to many neurological diseases. Even following decades of investigation, the process of aging is still far from being fully understood, especially at a systematic level. In this study, we identified aging related genes in brain by collecting the ones with sustained and consistent gene expression or DNA methylation changes in the aging process. Functional analysis with Gene Ontology to these genes suggested transcriptional regulators to be the most affected genes in the aging process. Transcription regulation analysis found some transcription factors, especially Specificity Protein 1 (SP1), to play important roles in regulating aging related gene expression. Module-based functional analysis indicated these genes to be associated with many well-known aging related pathways, supporting the validity of our approach to select aging related genes. Finally, we investigated the roles of aging related genes on Alzheimer's Disease (AD). We found that aging and AD related genes both involved some common pathways, which provided a possible explanation why aging made the brain more vulnerable to Alzheimer's Disease.

  15. A Systematic Investigation into Aging Related Genes in Brain and Their Relationship with Alzheimer's Disease.

    PubMed

    Meng, Guofeng; Zhong, Xiaoyan; Mei, Hongkang

    2016-01-01

    Aging, as a complex biological process, is accompanied by the accumulation of functional loses at different levels, which makes age to be the biggest risk factor to many neurological diseases. Even following decades of investigation, the process of aging is still far from being fully understood, especially at a systematic level. In this study, we identified aging related genes in brain by collecting the ones with sustained and consistent gene expression or DNA methylation changes in the aging process. Functional analysis with Gene Ontology to these genes suggested transcriptional regulators to be the most affected genes in the aging process. Transcription regulation analysis found some transcription factors, especially Specificity Protein 1 (SP1), to play important roles in regulating aging related gene expression. Module-based functional analysis indicated these genes to be associated with many well-known aging related pathways, supporting the validity of our approach to select aging related genes. Finally, we investigated the roles of aging related genes on Alzheimer's Disease (AD). We found that aging and AD related genes both involved some common pathways, which provided a possible explanation why aging made the brain more vulnerable to Alzheimer's Disease. PMID:26937969

  16. Genetic manipulation for inherited neurodegenerative diseases: myth or reality?

    PubMed

    Yu-Wai-Man, Patrick

    2016-10-01

    Rare genetic diseases affect about 7% of the general population and over 7000 distinct clinical syndromes have been described with the majority being due to single gene defects. This review will provide a critical overview of genetic strategies that are being pioneered to halt or reverse disease progression in inherited neurodegenerative diseases. This field of research covers a vast area and only the most promising treatment paradigms will be discussed with a particular focus on inherited eye diseases, which have paved the way for innovative gene therapy paradigms, and mitochondrial diseases, which are currently generating a lot of debate centred on the bioethics of germline manipulation.

  17. Genetic manipulation for inherited neurodegenerative diseases: myth or reality?

    PubMed Central

    Yu-Wai-Man, Patrick

    2016-01-01

    Rare genetic diseases affect about 7% of the general population and over 7000 distinct clinical syndromes have been described with the majority being due to single gene defects. This review will provide a critical overview of genetic strategies that are being pioneered to halt or reverse disease progression in inherited neurodegenerative diseases. This field of research covers a vast area and only the most promising treatment paradigms will be discussed with a particular focus on inherited eye diseases, which have paved the way for innovative gene therapy paradigms, and mitochondrial diseases, which are currently generating a lot of debate centred on the bioethics of germline manipulation. PMID:27002113

  18. Cerebral correlates of psychotic syndromes in neurodegenerative diseases

    PubMed Central

    Jellinger, Kurt A

    2012-01-01

    Abstract Psychosis has been recognized as a common feature in neurodegenerative diseases and a core feature of dementia that worsens most clinical courses. It includes hallucinations, delusions including paranoia, aggressive behaviour, apathy and other psychotic phenomena that occur in a wide range of degenerative disorders including Alzheimer’s disease, synucleinopathies (Parkinson’s disease, dementia with Lewy bodies), Huntington’s disease, frontotemporal degenerations, motoneuron and prion diseases. Many of these psychiatric manifestations may be early expressions of cognitive impairment, but often there is a dissociation between psychotic/behavioural symptoms and the rather linear decline in cognitive function, suggesting independent pathophysiological mechanisms. Strictly neuropathological explanations are likely to be insufficient to explain them, and a large group of heterogeneous factors (environmental, neurochemical changes, genetic factors, etc.) may influence their pathogenesis. Clinico-pathological evaluation of behavioural and psychotic symptoms (PS) in the setting of neurodegenerative and dementing disorders presents a significant challenge for modern neurosciences. Recognition and understanding of these manifestations may lead to the development of more effective preventive and therapeutic options that can serve to delay long-term progression of these devastating disorders and improve the patients’ quality of life. A better understanding of the pathophysiology and distinctive pathological features underlying the development of PS in neurodegenerative diseases may provide important insights into psychotic processes in general. PMID:21418522

  19. Multimodality imaging of Alzheimer disease and other neurodegenerative dementias.

    PubMed

    Nasrallah, Ilya M; Wolk, David A

    2014-12-01

    Neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer disease, result in cognitive decline and dementia and are a leading cause of mortality in the growing elderly population. These progressive diseases typically have an insidious onset, with overlapping clinical features early in the disease course that make diagnosis challenging. The neurodegenerative diseases are associated with characteristic, although not completely understood, changes in the brain: abnormal protein deposition, synaptic dysfunction, neuronal injury, and neuronal death. Neuroimaging biomarkers-principally regional atrophy on structural MR imaging, patterns of hypometabolism on (18)F-FDG PET, and detection of cerebral amyloid plaque on amyloid PET--are able to evaluate the patterns of these abnormalities in the brain to improve early diagnosis and help predict the disease course. These techniques have unique strengths and synergies in multimodality evaluation of the patient with cognitive decline or dementia. This review discusses the key imaging biomarkers from MR imaging, (18)F-FDG PET, and amyloid PET; the imaging features of the most common neurodegenerative dementias; the role of various neuroimaging studies in differential diagnosis and prognosis; and some promising imaging techniques under development.

  20. Pain in Neurodegenerative Disease: Current Knowledge and Future Perspectives

    PubMed Central

    de Tommaso, Marina; Arendt-Nielsen, Lars; Defrin, Ruth; Kunz, Miriam; Pickering, Gisele; Valeriani, Massimiliano

    2016-01-01

    Neurodegenerative diseases are going to increase as the life expectancy is getting longer. The management of neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's disease (AD) and other dementias, Parkinson's disease (PD) and PD related disorders, motor neuron diseases (MND), Huntington's disease (HD), spinocerebellar ataxia (SCA), and spinal muscular atrophy (SMA), is mainly addressed to motor and cognitive impairment, with special care to vital functions as breathing and feeding. Many of these patients complain of painful symptoms though their origin is variable, and their presence is frequently not considered in the treatment guidelines, leaving their management to the decision of the clinicians alone. However, studies focusing on pain frequency in such disorders suggest a high prevalence of pain in selected populations from 38 to 75% in AD, 40% to 86% in PD, and 19 to 85% in MND. The methods of pain assessment vary between studies so the type of pain has been rarely reported. However, a prevalent nonneuropathic origin of pain emerged for MND and PD. In AD, no data on pain features are available. No controlled therapeutic trials and guidelines are currently available. Given the relevance of pain in neurodegenerative disorders, the comprehensive understanding of mechanisms and predisposing factors, the application and validation of specific scales, and new specific therapeutic trials are needed. PMID:27313396

  1. PREFACE: Physics and biology of neurodegenerative diseases Physics and biology of neurodegenerative diseases

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pastore, Annalisa

    2012-06-01

    , about 15 years after the original reports, it is clear that amyloids are special structures that occur in nature under several different guises, some good, some evil [3]. The number of diseases associated with misfolding and fibrillogenesis has steadily increased. Examples of fairly common pathologies associated with fibre formation include Alzheimer's disease (currently one of the major threats for human health in our increasingly aging world), Parkinson's disease and several rare, but not less severe, pathologies. On the other hand, it is also clear that amyloid formation is a convenient mechanism for storing peptides and/or proteins in a compact and resistant way. The number of organisms/tissues in which amyloid deposits are found is thus increasing. It is also not too far-fetched to expect that the mechanical properties of amyloids could be used in biotechnology to design new materials. Because of the importance of this topic in so many scientific fields, we have dedicated this special issue of Journal of Physics: Condensed Matter to the topic of protein aggregation and disease. In the following pages we have collected two reviews and five articles that explore new and interesting developments in the field. References [1] Olby R 1994 The Path of the Double Helix: The Discovery of DNA (New York: Dover) [2] Dobson C M 2004 Principles of protein folding, misfolding and aggregation Semin. Cell Dev. Biol. 15 3-16 [3] Hammer N D, Wang X, McGuffie B A, Chapman M R 2008 Amyloids: friend or foe? J. Alzheimers Dis. 13 407-19 Physics and biology of neurodegenerative diseases contents Protein aggregation and misfolding: good or evil?Annalisa Pastore and Pierandrea Temussi Alzheimer's disease: biological aspects, therapeutic perspectives and diagnostic toolsM Di Carlo, D Giacomazza and P L San Biagio Entrapment of Aβ1-40 peptide in unstructured aggregatesC Corsale, R Carrotta, M R Mangione, S Vilasi, A Provenzano, G Cavallaro, D Bulone and P L San Biagio Elemental micro

  2. Liposomes for Targeted Delivery of Active Agents against Neurodegenerative Diseases (Alzheimer's Disease and Parkinson's Disease)

    PubMed Central

    Spuch, Carlos; Navarro, Carmen

    2011-01-01

    Neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer's disease and Parkinson's disease represent a huge unmet medical need. The prevalence of both diseases is increasing, but the efficacy of treatment is still very limited due to various factors including the blood brain barrier (BBB). Drug delivery to the brain remains the major challenge for the treatment of all neurodegenerative diseases because of the numerous protective barriers surrounding the central nervous system. New therapeutic drugs that cross the BBB are critically needed for treatment of many brain diseases. One of the significant factors on neurotherapeutics is the constraint of the blood brain barrier and the drug release kinetics that cause peripheral serious side effects. Contrary to common belief, neurodegenerative and neurological diseases may be multisystemic in nature, and this presents numerous difficulties for their potential treatment. Overall, the aim of this paper is to summarize the last findings and news related to liposome technology in the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases and demonstrate the potential of this technology for the development of novel therapeutics and the possible applications of liposomes in the two most widespread neurodegenerative diseases, Alzheimer's disease and Parkinson's disease. PMID:22203906

  3. Stem cell challenges in the treatment of neurodegenerative disease.

    PubMed

    Feng, Zhongling; Gao, Feng

    2012-02-01

    Neurodegenerative diseases result from the gradual and progressive loss of neural cells and lead to nervous system dysfunction. The rapidly advancing stem cell field is providing attractive alternative options for fighting these diseases. Results have provided proof of principle that cell replacement can work in humans with Parkinson's disease (PD). However, three clinical studies of cell transplantation were published that found no net benefit, while patients in two of the studies developed dyskinesias that persisted despite reductions in treatment. Induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSC) have major potential advantages because patient-specific neuroblasts are suitable for transplantation, avoid immune reactions, and can be produced without the use of human ES cells (hESC). Although iPSCs have not been successfully used in clinical trials for PD, patients with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) were treated with autologous stem cells and, though they had some degree of decline one year after treatment, they were still improved compared with the preoperative period or without any drug therapy. In addition, neural stem cells (NSCs), via brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), have been shown to ameliorate complex behavioral deficits associated with widespread Alzheimer's disease (AD) pathology in a transgenic mouse model of AD. So far, the FDA lists 18 clinical trials treating multiple sclerosis (MS), but most are in preliminary stages. This article serves as an overview of recent studies in stem cell and regenerative approaches to the above chronic neurodegenerative disorders. There are still many obstacles to the use of stem cells as a cure for neurodegenerative disease, especially because we still don't fully understand the true mechanisms of these diseases. However, there is hope in the potential of stem cells to help us learn and understand a great deal more about the mechanisms underlying these devastating neurodegenerative diseases.

  4. PREFACE: Physics and biology of neurodegenerative diseases Physics and biology of neurodegenerative diseases

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pastore, Annalisa

    2012-06-01

    , about 15 years after the original reports, it is clear that amyloids are special structures that occur in nature under several different guises, some good, some evil [3]. The number of diseases associated with misfolding and fibrillogenesis has steadily increased. Examples of fairly common pathologies associated with fibre formation include Alzheimer's disease (currently one of the major threats for human health in our increasingly aging world), Parkinson's disease and several rare, but not less severe, pathologies. On the other hand, it is also clear that amyloid formation is a convenient mechanism for storing peptides and/or proteins in a compact and resistant way. The number of organisms/tissues in which amyloid deposits are found is thus increasing. It is also not too far-fetched to expect that the mechanical properties of amyloids could be used in biotechnology to design new materials. Because of the importance of this topic in so many scientific fields, we have dedicated this special issue of Journal of Physics: Condensed Matter to the topic of protein aggregation and disease. In the following pages we have collected two reviews and five articles that explore new and interesting developments in the field. References [1] Olby R 1994 The Path of the Double Helix: The Discovery of DNA (New York: Dover) [2] Dobson C M 2004 Principles of protein folding, misfolding and aggregation Semin. Cell Dev. Biol. 15 3-16 [3] Hammer N D, Wang X, McGuffie B A, Chapman M R 2008 Amyloids: friend or foe? J. Alzheimers Dis. 13 407-19 Physics and biology of neurodegenerative diseases contents Protein aggregation and misfolding: good or evil?Annalisa Pastore and Pierandrea Temussi Alzheimer's disease: biological aspects, therapeutic perspectives and diagnostic toolsM Di Carlo, D Giacomazza and P L San Biagio Entrapment of Aβ1-40 peptide in unstructured aggregatesC Corsale, R Carrotta, M R Mangione, S Vilasi, A Provenzano, G Cavallaro, D Bulone and P L San Biagio Elemental micro

  5. Advances in epigenetics and epigenomics for neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Qureshi, Irfan A; Mehler, Mark F

    2011-10-01

    In the post-genomic era, epigenetic factors-literally those that are "over" or "above" genetic ones and responsible for controlling the expression and function of genes-have emerged as important mediators of development and aging; gene-gene and gene-environmental interactions; and the pathophysiology of complex disease states. Here, we provide a brief overview of the major epigenetic mechanisms (ie, DNA methylation, histone modifications and chromatin remodeling, and non-coding RNA regulation). We highlight the nearly ubiquitous profiles of epigenetic dysregulation that have been found in Alzheimer's and other neurodegenerative diseases. We also review innovative methods and technologies that enable the characterization of individual epigenetic modifications and more widespread epigenomic states at high resolution. We conclude that, together with complementary genetic, genomic, and related approaches, interrogating epigenetic and epigenomic profiles in neurodegenerative diseases represent important and increasingly practical strategies for advancing our understanding of and the diagnosis and treatment of these disorders.

  6. Searching for MIND: microRNAs in neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Barbato, Christian; Ruberti, Francesca; Cogoni, Carlo

    2009-01-01

    In few years our understanding of microRNA (miRNA) biogenesis, molecular mechanisms by which miRNAs regulate gene expression, and the functional roles of miRNAs has been expanded. Interestingly, numerous miRNAs are expressed in a spatially and temporally controlled manner in the nervous system, suggesting that their posttrascriptional regulation may be particularly relevant in neural development and function. MiRNA studies in neurobiology showed their involvement in synaptic plasticity and brain diseases. In this review ,correlations between miRNA-mediated gene silencing and Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, and other neurodegenerative diseases will be discussed. Molecular and cellular neurobiological studies of the miRNAs in neurodegeneration represent the exploration of a new Frontier of miRNAs biology and the potential development of new diagnostic tests and genetic therapies for neurodegenerative diseases.

  7. Therapeutic targeting of autophagy in neurodegenerative and infectious diseases

    PubMed Central

    Bento, Carla F.

    2015-01-01

    Autophagy is a conserved process that uses double-membrane vesicles to deliver cytoplasmic contents to lysosomes for degradation. Although autophagy may impact many facets of human biology and disease, in this review we focus on the ability of autophagy to protect against certain neurodegenerative and infectious diseases. Autophagy enhances the clearance of toxic, cytoplasmic, aggregate-prone proteins and infectious agents. The beneficial roles of autophagy can now be extended to supporting cell survival and regulating inflammation. Autophagic control of inflammation is one area where autophagy may have similar benefits for both infectious and neurodegenerative diseases beyond direct removal of the pathogenic agents. Preclinical data supporting the potential therapeutic utility of autophagy modulation in such conditions is accumulating. PMID:26101267

  8. Potential application of lithium in Parkinson's and other neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Lazzara, Carol A; Kim, Yong-Hwan

    2015-01-01

    Lithium, the long-standing hallmark treatment for bipolar disorder, has recently been identified as a potential neuroprotective agent in neurodegeneration. Here we focus on introducing numerous in vitro and in vivo studies that have shown lithium treatment to be efficacious in reducing oxidative stress and inflammation, increasing autophagy, inhibiting apoptosis, and decreasing the accumulation of α-synulcein, with an emphasis on Parkinson's disease. A number of biological pathways have been shown to be involved in causing these neuroprotective effects. The inhibition of GSK-3β has been the mechanism most studied; however, other modes of action include the regulation of apoptotic proteins and glutamate excitotoxicity as well as down-regulation of calpain. This review provides a framework of the neuroprotective effects of lithium in neurodegenerative diseases and the putative mechanisms by which lithium provides the protection. Lithium-only treatment may not be a suitable therapeutic option for neurodegenerative diseases due to inconsistent efficacy and potential side-effects, however, the use of low dose lithium in combination with other potential or existing therapeutic compounds may be a promising approach to reduce symptoms and disease progression in neurodegenerative diseases.

  9. Epidemiology of mild traumatic brain injury and neurodegenerative disease

    PubMed Central

    Gardner, Raquel C.; Yaffe, Kristine

    2015-01-01

    Every year an estimated 42 million people worldwide suffer a mild traumatic brain injury (MTBI) or concussion. More severe traumatic brain injury (TBI) is a well-established risk factor for a variety of neurodegenerative diseases including Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). Recently, large epidemiological studies have additionally identified MTBI as a risk factor for dementia. The role of MTBI in risk of PD or ALS is less well established. Repetitive MTBI and repetitive sub-concussive head trauma has been linked to increased risk for a variety of neurodegenerative diseases including chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE). CTE is a unique neurodegenerative tauopathy first described in boxers but more recently described in a variety of contact sport athletes, military veterans, and civilians exposed to repetitive MTBI. Studies of repetitive MTBI and CTE have been limited by referral bias, lack of consensus clinical criteria for CTE, challenges of quantifying MTBI exposure, and potential for confounding. The prevalence of CTE is unknown and the amount of MTBI or sub-concussive trauma exposure necessary to produce CTE is unclear. This review will summarize the current literature regarding the epidemiology of MTBI, post-TBI dementia and Parkinson's disease, and CTE while highlighting methodological challenges and critical future directions of research in this field. PMID:25748121

  10. Drosophila as an In Vivo Model for Human Neurodegenerative Disease

    PubMed Central

    McGurk, Leeanne; Berson, Amit; Bonini, Nancy M.

    2015-01-01

    With the increase in the ageing population, neurodegenerative disease is devastating to families and poses a huge burden on society. The brain and spinal cord are extraordinarily complex: they consist of a highly organized network of neuronal and support cells that communicate in a highly specialized manner. One approach to tackling problems of such complexity is to address the scientific questions in simpler, yet analogous, systems. The fruit fly, Drosophila melanogaster, has been proven tremendously valuable as a model organism, enabling many major discoveries in neuroscientific disease research. The plethora of genetic tools available in Drosophila allows for exquisite targeted manipulation of the genome. Due to its relatively short lifespan, complex questions of brain function can be addressed more rapidly than in other model organisms, such as the mouse. Here we discuss features of the fly as a model for human neurodegenerative disease. There are many distinct fly models for a range of neurodegenerative diseases; we focus on select studies from models of polyglutamine disease and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis that illustrate the type and range of insights that can be gleaned. In discussion of these models, we underscore strengths of the fly in providing understanding into mechanisms and pathways, as a foundation for translational and therapeutic research. PMID:26447127

  11. Potential application of lithium in Parkinson's and other neurodegenerative diseases

    PubMed Central

    Lazzara, Carol A.; Kim, Yong-Hwan

    2015-01-01

    Lithium, the long-standing hallmark treatment for bipolar disorder, has recently been identified as a potential neuroprotective agent in neurodegeneration. Here we focus on introducing numerous in vitro and in vivo studies that have shown lithium treatment to be efficacious in reducing oxidative stress and inflammation, increasing autophagy, inhibiting apoptosis, and decreasing the accumulation of α-synulcein, with an emphasis on Parkinson's disease. A number of biological pathways have been shown to be involved in causing these neuroprotective effects. The inhibition of GSK-3β has been the mechanism most studied; however, other modes of action include the regulation of apoptotic proteins and glutamate excitotoxicity as well as down-regulation of calpain. This review provides a framework of the neuroprotective effects of lithium in neurodegenerative diseases and the putative mechanisms by which lithium provides the protection. Lithium-only treatment may not be a suitable therapeutic option for neurodegenerative diseases due to inconsistent efficacy and potential side-effects, however, the use of low dose lithium in combination with other potential or existing therapeutic compounds may be a promising approach to reduce symptoms and disease progression in neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:26578864

  12. Dysphagia in stroke, neurodegenerative disease, and advanced dementia.

    PubMed

    Altman, Kenneth W; Richards, Amanda; Goldberg, Leanne; Frucht, Steven; McCabe, Daniel J

    2013-12-01

    Aspiration risk from dysphagia increases with central and peripheral neurologic disease. Stroke, microvascular ischemic disease, a spectrum of neurodegenerative diseases, and advancing dementia all have unique aspects. However, there are distinct commonalities in this population. Increasing nutritional requirements to stave off oropharyngeal muscular atrophy and a sedentary lifestyle further tax the patient's abilities to safely swallow. This article reviews stroke, muscular dystrophy, myasthenia gravis, multiple sclerosis, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, Parkinson's disease, and advanced dementia. Approaches to screening and evaluation, recognizing sentinel indicators of decline that increase aspiration risk, and options for managing global laryngeal dysfunction are also presented. PMID:24262965

  13. [Induced pluripotent stem cells revolutionise research of neurodegenerative diseases].

    PubMed

    Schmidt, Sissel Ida; Knudsen, Matias Jul; Barnkob, Helle Bogetofte; Meyer, Morten

    2016-07-18

    Research into the causes of neurodegenerative diseases like Parkinson's- and Alzheimer's disease has long been hampered by the lack of access to live disease-afflicted neurons for in vitro studies. The introduction of induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells has made such studies possible. iPS cells can be reprogrammed from somatic patient-derived cells (e.g. skin cells) and differentiated into any cell type of the body. This allows for the production of neurons, which have the genetic background of the patients and show disease-relevant phenotypes.

  14. Dysphagia in stroke, neurodegenerative disease, and advanced dementia.

    PubMed

    Altman, Kenneth W; Richards, Amanda; Goldberg, Leanne; Frucht, Steven; McCabe, Daniel J

    2013-12-01

    Aspiration risk from dysphagia increases with central and peripheral neurologic disease. Stroke, microvascular ischemic disease, a spectrum of neurodegenerative diseases, and advancing dementia all have unique aspects. However, there are distinct commonalities in this population. Increasing nutritional requirements to stave off oropharyngeal muscular atrophy and a sedentary lifestyle further tax the patient's abilities to safely swallow. This article reviews stroke, muscular dystrophy, myasthenia gravis, multiple sclerosis, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, Parkinson's disease, and advanced dementia. Approaches to screening and evaluation, recognizing sentinel indicators of decline that increase aspiration risk, and options for managing global laryngeal dysfunction are also presented.

  15. Polyphenol Stilbenes: Molecular Mechanisms of Defence against Oxidative Stress and Aging-Related Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Reinisalo, Mika; Kårlund, Anna; Koskela, Ali; Kaarniranta, Kai; Karjalainen, Reijo O.

    2015-01-01

    Numerous studies have highlighted the key roles of oxidative stress and inflammation in aging-related diseases such as obesity, type 2 diabetes, age-related macular degeneration (AMD), and Alzheimer's disease (AD). In aging cells, the natural antioxidant capacity decreases and the overall efficiency of reparative systems against cell damage becomes impaired. There is convincing data that stilbene compounds, a diverse group of natural defence phenolics, abundant in grapes, berries, and conifer bark waste, may confer a protective effect against aging-related diseases. This review highlights recent data helping to clarify the molecular mechanisms involved in the stilbene-mediated protection against oxidative stress. The impact of stilbenes on the nuclear factor-erythroid-2-related factor-2 (Nrf2) mediated cellular defence against oxidative stress as well as the potential roles of SQSTM1/p62 protein in Nrf2/Keap1 signaling and autophagy will be summarized. The therapeutic potential of stilbene compounds against the most common aging-related diseases is discussed. PMID:26180583

  16. What determines age-related disease: do we know all the right questions?

    PubMed Central

    2009-01-01

    The average human lifespan has increased throughout the last century due to the mitigation of many infectious diseases. More people now die of age-related diseases than ever before, but these diseases have been resistant to elimination. Progress has been made in treatments and preventative measures to delay the onsets of these diseases, but most cancers and vascular diseases are still with us and they kill about the same fraction of the population year after year. For example, US Caucasian female deaths from breast plus genital cancers have remained a fairly constant ~7% of the age-related disease deaths from 1938 to 1998 and have been consistently ~2-fold greater than female colon plus rectal cancer deaths over that span. This type of stability pattern pervades the age-related diseases and suggests that intrinsic properties within populations determine these fractions. Recognizing this pattern and deciphering its origin will be necessary for the complete understanding of these major causes of death. It would appear that more than the random processes of aging drive this effect. The question is how to meaningfully approach this problem. This commentary discusses the epidemiological and aging perspectives and their current limitations in providing an explanation. The age of bioinformatics offers hope, but only if creative systems approaches are forthcoming. PMID:19904627

  17. Nutraceuticals and amyloid neurodegenerative diseases: a focus on natural phenols.

    PubMed

    Rigacci, Stefania; Stefani, Massimo

    2015-01-01

    A common molecular feature of amyloid neurodegenerative diseases is the unfolding/misfolding of specific proteins/peptides which consequently become prone to aggregate into toxic assemblies and deposits that are the key histopathological trait of these pathologies. Apart from the rare early-onset familiar forms, these neurodegenerative diseases are age-associated disorders whose symptoms appear in aged people after long incubation periods. This makes the therapeutic approach particularly compelling and boosts the search for both early diagnostic tools and preventive approaches. In this last respect, natural compounds commonly present in foods and beverages are considered promising molecules, at least on the bench side. The so-called 'nutraceutical approach' suggests life-long healthy diets, particularly focusing on food molecules that are candidates to enter clinical trials as such or following a targeted molecular engineering. Natural phenols abundant in 'healthy' foods such as extra virgin olive oil, red wine, green tea, red berries and spices, appear particularly promising. PMID:25418871

  18. Telomeres and telomerase as therapeutic targets to prevent and treat age-related diseases

    PubMed Central

    Bär, Christian; Blasco, Maria A.

    2016-01-01

    Telomeres, the protective ends of linear chromosomes, shorten throughout an individual’s lifetime. Telomere shortening is a hallmark of molecular aging and is associated with premature appearance of diseases associated with aging. Here, we discuss the role of telomere shortening as a direct cause for aging and age-related diseases. In particular, we draw attention to the fact that telomere length influences longevity. Furthermore, we discuss intrinsic and environmental factors that can impact on human telomere erosion. Finally, we highlight recent advances in telomerase-based therapeutic strategies for the treatment of diseases associated with extremely short telomeres owing to mutations in telomerase, as well as age-related diseases, and ultimately aging itself. PMID:27081482

  19. The role of methylglyoxal and the glyoxalase system in diabetes and other age-related diseases.

    PubMed

    Maessen, Dionne E M; Stehouwer, Coen D A; Schalkwijk, Casper G

    2015-06-01

    The formation and accumulation of advanced glycation endproducts (AGEs) are related to diabetes and other age-related diseases. Methylglyoxal (MGO), a highly reactive dicarbonyl compound, is the major precursor in the formation of AGEs. MGO is mainly formed as a byproduct of glycolysis. Under physiological circumstances, MGO is detoxified by the glyoxalase system into D-lactate, with glyoxalase I (GLO1) as the key enzyme in the anti-glycation defence. New insights indicate that increased levels of MGO and the major MGO-derived AGE, methylglyoxal-derived hydroimidazolone 1 (MG-H1), and dysfunctioning of the glyoxalase system are linked to several age-related health problems, such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease, cancer and disorders of the central nervous system. The present review summarizes the mechanisms through which MGO is formed, its detoxification by the glyoxalase system and its effect on biochemical pathways in relation to the development of age-related diseases. Although several scavengers of MGO have been developed over the years, therapies to treat MGO-associated complications are not yet available for application in clinical practice. Small bioactive inducers of GLO1 can potentially form the basis for new treatment strategies for age-related disorders in which MGO plays a pivotal role.

  20. Novel gene function revealed by mouse mutagenesis screens for models of age-related disease

    PubMed Central

    Potter, Paul K.; Bowl, Michael R.; Jeyarajan, Prashanthini; Wisby, Laura; Blease, Andrew; Goldsworthy, Michelle E.; Simon, Michelle M.; Greenaway, Simon; Michel, Vincent; Barnard, Alun; Aguilar, Carlos; Agnew, Thomas; Banks, Gareth; Blake, Andrew; Chessum, Lauren; Dorning, Joanne; Falcone, Sara; Goosey, Laurence; Harris, Shelley; Haynes, Andy; Heise, Ines; Hillier, Rosie; Hough, Tertius; Hoslin, Angela; Hutchison, Marie; King, Ruairidh; Kumar, Saumya; Lad, Heena V.; Law, Gemma; MacLaren, Robert E.; Morse, Susan; Nicol, Thomas; Parker, Andrew; Pickford, Karen; Sethi, Siddharth; Starbuck, Becky; Stelma, Femke; Cheeseman, Michael; Cross, Sally H.; Foster, Russell G.; Jackson, Ian J.; Peirson, Stuart N.; Thakker, Rajesh V.; Vincent, Tonia; Scudamore, Cheryl; Wells, Sara; El-Amraoui, Aziz; Petit, Christine; Acevedo-Arozena, Abraham; Nolan, Patrick M.; Cox, Roger; Mallon, Anne-Marie; Brown, Steve D. M.

    2016-01-01

    Determining the genetic bases of age-related disease remains a major challenge requiring a spectrum of approaches from human and clinical genetics to the utilization of model organism studies. Here we report a large-scale genetic screen in mice employing a phenotype-driven discovery platform to identify mutations resulting in age-related disease, both late-onset and progressive. We have utilized N-ethyl-N-nitrosourea mutagenesis to generate pedigrees of mutagenized mice that were subject to recurrent screens for mutant phenotypes as the mice aged. In total, we identify 105 distinct mutant lines from 157 pedigrees analysed, out of which 27 are late-onset phenotypes across a range of physiological systems. Using whole-genome sequencing we uncover the underlying genes for 44 of these mutant phenotypes, including 12 late-onset phenotypes. These genes reveal a number of novel pathways involved with age-related disease. We illustrate our findings by the recovery and characterization of a novel mouse model of age-related hearing loss. PMID:27534441

  1. Novel gene function revealed by mouse mutagenesis screens for models of age-related disease.

    PubMed

    Potter, Paul K; Bowl, Michael R; Jeyarajan, Prashanthini; Wisby, Laura; Blease, Andrew; Goldsworthy, Michelle E; Simon, Michelle M; Greenaway, Simon; Michel, Vincent; Barnard, Alun; Aguilar, Carlos; Agnew, Thomas; Banks, Gareth; Blake, Andrew; Chessum, Lauren; Dorning, Joanne; Falcone, Sara; Goosey, Laurence; Harris, Shelley; Haynes, Andy; Heise, Ines; Hillier, Rosie; Hough, Tertius; Hoslin, Angela; Hutchison, Marie; King, Ruairidh; Kumar, Saumya; Lad, Heena V; Law, Gemma; MacLaren, Robert E; Morse, Susan; Nicol, Thomas; Parker, Andrew; Pickford, Karen; Sethi, Siddharth; Starbuck, Becky; Stelma, Femke; Cheeseman, Michael; Cross, Sally H; Foster, Russell G; Jackson, Ian J; Peirson, Stuart N; Thakker, Rajesh V; Vincent, Tonia; Scudamore, Cheryl; Wells, Sara; El-Amraoui, Aziz; Petit, Christine; Acevedo-Arozena, Abraham; Nolan, Patrick M; Cox, Roger; Mallon, Anne-Marie; Brown, Steve D M

    2016-08-18

    Determining the genetic bases of age-related disease remains a major challenge requiring a spectrum of approaches from human and clinical genetics to the utilization of model organism studies. Here we report a large-scale genetic screen in mice employing a phenotype-driven discovery platform to identify mutations resulting in age-related disease, both late-onset and progressive. We have utilized N-ethyl-N-nitrosourea mutagenesis to generate pedigrees of mutagenized mice that were subject to recurrent screens for mutant phenotypes as the mice aged. In total, we identify 105 distinct mutant lines from 157 pedigrees analysed, out of which 27 are late-onset phenotypes across a range of physiological systems. Using whole-genome sequencing we uncover the underlying genes for 44 of these mutant phenotypes, including 12 late-onset phenotypes. These genes reveal a number of novel pathways involved with age-related disease. We illustrate our findings by the recovery and characterization of a novel mouse model of age-related hearing loss.

  2. Novel gene function revealed by mouse mutagenesis screens for models of age-related disease.

    PubMed

    Potter, Paul K; Bowl, Michael R; Jeyarajan, Prashanthini; Wisby, Laura; Blease, Andrew; Goldsworthy, Michelle E; Simon, Michelle M; Greenaway, Simon; Michel, Vincent; Barnard, Alun; Aguilar, Carlos; Agnew, Thomas; Banks, Gareth; Blake, Andrew; Chessum, Lauren; Dorning, Joanne; Falcone, Sara; Goosey, Laurence; Harris, Shelley; Haynes, Andy; Heise, Ines; Hillier, Rosie; Hough, Tertius; Hoslin, Angela; Hutchison, Marie; King, Ruairidh; Kumar, Saumya; Lad, Heena V; Law, Gemma; MacLaren, Robert E; Morse, Susan; Nicol, Thomas; Parker, Andrew; Pickford, Karen; Sethi, Siddharth; Starbuck, Becky; Stelma, Femke; Cheeseman, Michael; Cross, Sally H; Foster, Russell G; Jackson, Ian J; Peirson, Stuart N; Thakker, Rajesh V; Vincent, Tonia; Scudamore, Cheryl; Wells, Sara; El-Amraoui, Aziz; Petit, Christine; Acevedo-Arozena, Abraham; Nolan, Patrick M; Cox, Roger; Mallon, Anne-Marie; Brown, Steve D M

    2016-01-01

    Determining the genetic bases of age-related disease remains a major challenge requiring a spectrum of approaches from human and clinical genetics to the utilization of model organism studies. Here we report a large-scale genetic screen in mice employing a phenotype-driven discovery platform to identify mutations resulting in age-related disease, both late-onset and progressive. We have utilized N-ethyl-N-nitrosourea mutagenesis to generate pedigrees of mutagenized mice that were subject to recurrent screens for mutant phenotypes as the mice aged. In total, we identify 105 distinct mutant lines from 157 pedigrees analysed, out of which 27 are late-onset phenotypes across a range of physiological systems. Using whole-genome sequencing we uncover the underlying genes for 44 of these mutant phenotypes, including 12 late-onset phenotypes. These genes reveal a number of novel pathways involved with age-related disease. We illustrate our findings by the recovery and characterization of a novel mouse model of age-related hearing loss. PMID:27534441

  3. The role of macropinocytosis in the propagation of protein aggregation associated with neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Zeineddine, Rafaa; Yerbury, Justin J

    2015-01-01

    With the onset of the rapidly aging population, the impact of age related neurodegenerative diseases is becoming a predominant health and economic concern. Neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's disease, Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD), Parkinson's disease, Huntington's disease, frontotemporal dementia (FTD), and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) result from the loss of a specific subsets of neurons, which is closely associated with accumulation and deposition of specific protein aggregates. Protein aggregation, or fibril formation, is a well-studied phenomenon that occurs in a nucleation-dependent growth reaction. Recently, there has been a swell of literature implicating protein aggregation and its ability to propagate cell-to-cell in the rapid progression of these diseases. In order for protein aggregation to be kindled in recipient cells it is a requisite that aggregates must be able to be released from one cell and then taken up by others. In this article we will explore the relationship between protein aggregates, their propagation and the role of macropinocytosis in their uptake. We highlight the ability of neurons to undergo stimulated macropinocytosis and identify potential therapeutic targets. PMID:26528186

  4. Stem cells for the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Dantuma, Elise; Merchant, Stephanie; Sugaya, Kiminobu

    2010-12-10

    Stem cells offer an enormous pool of resources for the understanding of the human body. One proposed use of stem cells has been as an autologous therapy. The use of stem cells for neurodegenerative diseases has become of interest. Clinical applications of stem cells for Alzheimer disease, Parkinson disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, and multiple sclerosis will increase in the coming years, and although great care will need to be taken when moving forward with prospective treatments, the application of stem cells is highly promising.

  5. Neural substrates of spontaneous narrative production in focal neurodegenerative disease.

    PubMed

    Gola, Kelly A; Thorne, Avril; Veldhuisen, Lisa D; Felix, Cordula M; Hankinson, Sarah; Pham, Julie; Shany-Ur, Tal; Schauer, Guido P; Stanley, Christine M; Glenn, Shenly; Miller, Bruce L; Rankin, Katherine P

    2015-12-01

    Conversational storytelling integrates diverse cognitive and socio-emotional abilities that critically differ across neurodegenerative disease groups. Storytelling patterns may have diagnostic relevance and predict anatomic changes. The present study employed mixed methods discourse and quantitative analyses to delineate patterns of storytelling across focal neurodegenerative disease groups, and to clarify the neuroanatomical contributions to common storytelling characteristics. Transcripts of spontaneous social interactions of 46 participants (15 behavioral variant frontotemporal dementia (bvFTD), 7 semantic variant primary progressive aphasia (svPPA), 12 Alzheimer's disease (AD), and 12 healthy older normal controls (NC)) were analyzed for storytelling frequency and characteristics, and videos of the interactions were rated for patients' level of social attentiveness. Compared to controls, svPPAs told more stories and autobiographical stories, and perseverated on aspects of self during the interaction, whereas ADs told fewer autobiographical stories than NCs. svPPAs and bvFTDs were rated as less attentive to social cues. Aspects of storytelling were related to diverse cognitive and socio-emotional functions, and voxel-based anatomic analysis of structural magnetic resonance imaging revealed that temporal organization, narrative evaluations patterns, and social attentiveness correlated with atrophy corresponding to known intrinsic connectivity networks, including the default mode, limbic, salience, and stable task control networks. Differences in spontaneous storytelling among neurodegenerative groups elucidated diverse cognitive, socio-emotional, and neural contributions to narrative production, with implications for diagnostic screening and therapeutic intervention. PMID:26485159

  6. Glycation: the angiogenic paradox in aging and age-related disorders and diseases.

    PubMed

    Roca, F; Grossin, N; Chassagne, P; Puisieux, F; Boulanger, E

    2014-05-01

    Angiogenesis is generally a quiescent process which, however, may be modified by different physiological and pathological conditions. The "angiogenic paradox" has been described in diabetes because this disease impairs the angiogenic response in a manner that differs depending on the organs involved and disease evolution. Aging is also associated with pro- and antiangiogenic processes. Glycation, the post-translational modification of proteins, increases with aging and the progression of diabetes. The effect of glycation on angiogenesis depends on the type of glycated proteins and cells involved. This complex link could be responsible for the "angiogenic paradox" in aging and age-related disorders and diseases. Using diabetes as a model, the present work has attempted to review the age-related angiogenic paradox, in particular the effects of glycation on angiogenesis during aging.

  7. Cellular senescence in aging and age-related disease: from mechanisms to therapy

    PubMed Central

    Childs, Bennett G; Durik, Matej; Baker, Darren J; van Deursen, Jan M

    2016-01-01

    Cellular senescence, a process that imposes permanent proliferative arrest on cells in response to various stressors, has emerged as a potentially important contributor to aging and age-related disease, and it is an attractive target for therapeutic exploitation. A wealth of information about senescence in cultured cells has been acquired over the past half century; however, senescence in living organisms is poorly understood, largely because of technical limitations relating to the identification and characterization of senescent cells in tissues and organs. Furthermore, newly recognized beneficial signaling functions of senescence suggest that indiscriminately targeting senescent cells or modulating their secretome for anti-aging therapy may have negative consequences. Here we discuss current progress and challenges in understanding the stressors that induce senescence in vivo, the cell types that are prone to senesce, and the autocrine and paracrine properties of senescent cells in the contexts of aging and age-related diseases as well as disease therapy. PMID:26646499

  8. Cellular senescence in aging and age-related disease: from mechanisms to therapy.

    PubMed

    Childs, Bennett G; Durik, Matej; Baker, Darren J; van Deursen, Jan M

    2015-12-01

    Cellular senescence, a process that imposes permanent proliferative arrest on cells in response to various stressors, has emerged as a potentially important contributor to aging and age-related disease, and it is an attractive target for therapeutic exploitation. A wealth of information about senescence in cultured cells has been acquired over the past half century; however, senescence in living organisms is poorly understood, largely because of technical limitations relating to the identification and characterization of senescent cells in tissues and organs. Furthermore, newly recognized beneficial signaling functions of senescence suggest that indiscriminately targeting senescent cells or modulating their secretome for anti-aging therapy may have negative consequences. Here we discuss current progress and challenges in understanding the stressors that induce senescence in vivo, the cell types that are prone to senesce, and the autocrine and paracrine properties of senescent cells in the contexts of aging and age-related diseases as well as disease therapy.

  9. Low levels of aluminum can lead to behavioral and morphological changes associated with Alzheimer's disease and age-related neurodegeneration.

    PubMed

    Bondy, Stephen C

    2016-01-01

    Aluminum (Al) is a very common component of the earth's mineral composition. It is not essential element for life and is a constituent of rather inert minerals. Therefore, it has often been regarded as not presenting a significant health hazard. As a result, aluminum-containing agents been used in the preparation of many foodstuffs processing steps and also in elimination of particulate organic matter from water. More recently, the reduced pH of bodies of water resulting from acid rain has led to mobilization of aluminum-containing minerals into a more soluble form, and these have thus entered residential drinking water resources. By this means, the body burden of aluminum in humans has increased. Epidemiological and experimental findings indicate that aluminum is not as harmless as was previously thought, and that aluminum may contribute to the inception and advancement of Alzheimer's disease. Epidemiological data is reinforced by indications that aluminum exposure can result in excess inflammatory activity within the brain. Activation of the immune system not initiated by an infectious agent, typifies the aging brain and is even more augmented in several neurodegenerative diseases. The origin of most age-related neurological disorders is generally not known but as they are largely not of genetic derivation, their development is likely triggered by unknown environmental factors. There is a growing and consistent body of evidence that points to aluminum as being one such significant influence. Evidence is presented that reinforces the likelihood that aluminum is a factor speeding the rate of brain aging. Such acceleration would inevitably enlarge the incidence of age-related neurological diseases.

  10. Low levels of aluminum can lead to behavioral and morphological changes associated with Alzheimer's disease and age-related neurodegeneration.

    PubMed

    Bondy, Stephen C

    2016-01-01

    Aluminum (Al) is a very common component of the earth's mineral composition. It is not essential element for life and is a constituent of rather inert minerals. Therefore, it has often been regarded as not presenting a significant health hazard. As a result, aluminum-containing agents been used in the preparation of many foodstuffs processing steps and also in elimination of particulate organic matter from water. More recently, the reduced pH of bodies of water resulting from acid rain has led to mobilization of aluminum-containing minerals into a more soluble form, and these have thus entered residential drinking water resources. By this means, the body burden of aluminum in humans has increased. Epidemiological and experimental findings indicate that aluminum is not as harmless as was previously thought, and that aluminum may contribute to the inception and advancement of Alzheimer's disease. Epidemiological data is reinforced by indications that aluminum exposure can result in excess inflammatory activity within the brain. Activation of the immune system not initiated by an infectious agent, typifies the aging brain and is even more augmented in several neurodegenerative diseases. The origin of most age-related neurological disorders is generally not known but as they are largely not of genetic derivation, their development is likely triggered by unknown environmental factors. There is a growing and consistent body of evidence that points to aluminum as being one such significant influence. Evidence is presented that reinforces the likelihood that aluminum is a factor speeding the rate of brain aging. Such acceleration would inevitably enlarge the incidence of age-related neurological diseases. PMID:26687397

  11. Use of Caenorhabditis elegans as a model to study Alzheimer’s disease and other neurodegenerative diseases

    PubMed Central

    Alexander, Adanna G.; Marfil, Vanessa; Li, Chris

    2014-01-01

    Advances in research and technology has increased our quality of life, allowed us to combat diseases, and achieve increased longevity. Unfortunately, increased longevity is accompanied by a rise in the incidences of age-related diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease (AD). AD is the sixth leading cause of death, and one of the leading causes of dementia amongst the aged population in the USA. It is a progressive neurodegenerative disorder, characterized by the prevalence of extracellular Aβ plaques and intracellular neurofibrillary tangles, derived from the proteolysis of the amyloid precursor protein (APP) and the hyperphosphorylation of microtubule-associated protein tau, respectively. Despite years of extensive research, the molecular mechanisms that underlie the pathology of AD remain unclear. Model organisms, such as the nematode, Caenorhabditis elegans, present a complementary approach to addressing these questions. C. elegans has many advantages as a model system to study AD and other neurodegenerative diseases. Like their mammalian counterparts, they have complex biochemical pathways, most of which are conserved. Genes in which mutations are correlated with AD have counterparts in C. elegans, including an APP-related gene, apl-1, a tau homolog, ptl-1, and presenilin homologs, such as sel-12 and hop-1. Since the neuronal connectivity in C. elegans has already been established, C. elegans is also advantageous in modeling learning and memory impairments seen during AD. This article addresses the insights C. elegans provide in studying AD and other neurodegenerative diseases. Additionally, we explore the advantages and drawbacks associated with using this model. PMID:25250042

  12. Estimation of Heterogeneity in Diagnostic Parameters of Age-related Diseases.

    PubMed

    Blokh, David; Stambler, Ilia

    2014-08-01

    The heterogeneity of parameters is a ubiquitous biological phenomenon, with critical implications for biological systems functioning in normal and diseased states. We developed a method to estimate the level of objects set heterogeneity with reference to particular parameters and applied it to type II diabetes and heart disease, as examples of age-related systemic dysfunctions. The Friedman test was used to establish the existence of heterogeneity. The Newman-Keuls multiple comparison method was used to determine clusters. The normalized Shannon entropy was used to provide the quantitative evaluation of heterogeneity. There was obtained an estimate for the heterogeneity of the diagnostic parameters in healthy subjects, as well as in heart disease and type II diabetes patients, which was strongly related to their age. With aging, as with the diseases, the level of heterogeneity (entropy) was reduced, indicating a formal analogy between these phenomena. The similarity of the patterns in aging and disease suggested a kind of "early aging" of the diseased subjects, or alternatively a "disease-like" aging process, with reference to these particular parameters. The proposed method and its validation on the chronic age-related disease samples may support a way toward a formal mathematical relation between aging and chronic diseases and a formal definition of aging and disease, as determined by particular heterogeneity (entropy) changes. PMID:25110613

  13. Heavy metals and neurodegenerative diseases: an observational study.

    PubMed

    Giacoppo, Sabrina; Galuppo, Maria; Calabrò, Rocco Salvatore; D'Aleo, Giangaetano; Marra, Angela; Sessa, Edoardo; Bua, Daniel Giuseppe; Potortì, Angela Giorgia; Dugo, Giacomo; Bramanti, Placido; Mazzon, Emanuela

    2014-11-01

    In this study, we evaluated the levels of some of the most investigated metals (Cu, Se, Zn, Pb, and Hg) in the blood of patients affected by the most common chronic neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer's disease (AD) and multiple sclerosis (MS), in order to better clarify their involvement. For the first time, we investigated a Sicilian population living in an area exposed to a potentially contaminated environment from dust and fumes of volcano Etna and consumer of a considerable quantity of fish in their diet, so that this represents a good cohort to demonstrate a possible link between metals levels and development of neurodegenerative disorders. More specifically, 15 patients affected by AD, 41 patients affected by MS, 23 healthy controls, and 10 healthy elderly controls were recruited and subjected to a venous blood sampling. Quantification of heavy metals was performed by Inductively Coupled Plasma-Mass Spectrometry (ICP-MS). This technique has allowed us to establish that there is a concomitance of heavy metal unbalance associated with AD more than in other neurodegenerative pathologies, such as MS. Also, we can assess that the concentration of these elements is independent from the diet, especially from occasional or habitual consumption of fruits and vegetables, prevalence in the diet of meat or fish, possible exposure to contaminated environment due both to the occupation and place of residence.

  14. Adult Hippocampal Neurogenesis, Aging and Neurodegenerative Diseases: Possible Strategies to Prevent Cognitive Impairment.

    PubMed

    Vivar, Carmen

    2015-01-01

    The adult brain of humans and other mammals continuously generates new neurons throughout life. However, this neurogenic capacity is limited to two brain areas, the dentate gyrus (DG of the hippocampus and the subventricular zone (SVZ of the lateral ventricle. Although the DG generates new neurons, its neurogenic capacity declines with age and neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's disease (AD and Huntington's disease (HD. This review focuses on the role of newly-born neurons in cognitive processes, and discusses some of the strategies proposed in humans and animals to enhance neurogenesis and counteract age-related cognitive deficits, such as physical exercise and intake of natural products like omega-3 fatty acids, curcumin and flavanols. PMID:26059358

  15. Redox Processes in Neurodegenerative Disease Involving Reactive Oxygen Species

    PubMed Central

    Kovacic, Peter; Somanathan, Ratnasamy

    2012-01-01

    Much attention has been devoted to neurodegenerative diseases involving redox processes. This review comprises an update involving redox processes reported in the considerable literature in recent years. The mechanism involves reactive oxygen species and oxidative stress, usually in the brain. There are many examples including Parkinson’s, Huntington’s, Alzheimer’s, prions, Down’s syndrome, ataxia, multiple sclerosis, Creutzfeldt-Jacob disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, schizophrenia, and Tardive Dyskinesia. Evidence indicates a protective role for antioxidants, which may have clinical implications. A multifaceted approach to mode of action appears reasonable. PMID:23730253

  16. Mitochondrial quality control: decommissioning power plants in neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Mukherjee, Rukmini; Chakrabarti, Oishee

    2013-01-01

    The cell has an intricate quality control system to protect its mitochondria from oxidative stress. This surveillance system is multi-tiered and comprises molecules that are present inside the mitochondria, in the cytosol, and in other organelles like the nucleus and endoplasmic reticulum. These molecules cross talk with each other and protect the mitochondria from oxidative stress. Oxidative stress is a fundamental part of early disease pathogenesis of neurodegenerative diseases. These disorders also damage the cellular quality control machinery that protects the cell against oxidative stress. This exacerbates the oxidative damage and causes extensive neuronal cell death that is characteristic of neurodegeneration. PMID:24288463

  17. Pathogenic protein seeding in Alzheimer disease and other neurodegenerative disorders.

    PubMed

    Jucker, Mathias; Walker, Lary C

    2011-10-01

    The misfolding and aggregation of specific proteins is a seminal occurrence in a remarkable variety of neurodegenerative disorders. In Alzheimer disease (the most prevalent cerebral proteopathy), the two principal aggregating proteins are β-amyloid (Aβ) and tau. The abnormal assemblies formed by conformational variants of these proteins range in size from small oligomers to the characteristic lesions that are visible by optical microscopy, such as senile plaques and neurofibrillary tangles. Pathologic similarities with prion disease suggest that the formation and spread of these proteinaceous lesions might involve a common molecular mechanism-corruptive protein templating. Experimentally, cerebral β-amyloidosis can be exogenously induced by exposure to dilute brain extracts containing aggregated Aβ seeds. The amyloid-inducing agent probably is Aβ itself, in a conformation generated most effectively in the living brain. Once initiated, Aβ lesions proliferate within and among brain regions. The induction process is governed by the structural and biochemical nature of the Aβ seed, as well as the attributes of the host, reminiscent of pathogenically variant prion strains. The concept of prionlike induction and spreading of pathogenic proteins recently has been expanded to include aggregates of tau, α-synuclein, huntingtin, superoxide dismutase-1, and TDP-43, which characterize such human neurodegenerative disorders as frontotemporal lobar degeneration, Parkinson/Lewy body disease, Huntington disease, and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. Our recent finding that the most effective Aβ seeds are small and soluble intensifies the search in bodily fluids for misfolded protein seeds that are upstream in the proteopathic cascade, and thus could serve as predictive diagnostics and the targets of early, mechanism-based interventions. Establishing the clinical implications of corruptive protein templating will require further mechanistic and epidemiologic investigations

  18. The role of the Wnt canonical signaling in neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Libro, Rosaliana; Bramanti, Placido; Mazzon, Emanuela

    2016-08-01

    The Wnt/β-catenin or Wnt canonical pathway controls multiple biological processes throughout development and adult life. Growing evidences have suggested that deregulation of the Wnt canonical pathway could be involved in the pathogenesis of neurodegenerative diseases. The Wnt canonical signaling is a pathway tightly regulated, which activation results in the inhibition of the Glycogen Synthase Kinase 3β (GSK-3β) function and in increased β-catenin activity, that migrates into the nucleus, activating the transcription of the Wnt target genes. Conversely, when the Wnt canonical pathway is turned off, increased levels of GSK-3β promote β-catenin degradation. Hence, GSK-3β could be considered as a key regulator of the Wnt canonical pathway. Of note, GSK-3β has also been involved in the modulation of inflammation and apoptosis, determining the delicate balance between immune tolerance/inflammation and neuronal survival/neurodegeneration. In this review, we have summarized the current acknowledgements about the role of the Wnt canonical pathway in the pathogenesis of some neurodegenerative diseases including Alzheimer's disease, cerebral ischemia, Parkinson's disease, Huntington's disease, multiple sclerosis and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, with particular regard to the main in vitro and in vivo studies in this field, by reviewing 85 research articles about. PMID:27370940

  19. The role of the Wnt canonical signaling in neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Libro, Rosaliana; Bramanti, Placido; Mazzon, Emanuela

    2016-08-01

    The Wnt/β-catenin or Wnt canonical pathway controls multiple biological processes throughout development and adult life. Growing evidences have suggested that deregulation of the Wnt canonical pathway could be involved in the pathogenesis of neurodegenerative diseases. The Wnt canonical signaling is a pathway tightly regulated, which activation results in the inhibition of the Glycogen Synthase Kinase 3β (GSK-3β) function and in increased β-catenin activity, that migrates into the nucleus, activating the transcription of the Wnt target genes. Conversely, when the Wnt canonical pathway is turned off, increased levels of GSK-3β promote β-catenin degradation. Hence, GSK-3β could be considered as a key regulator of the Wnt canonical pathway. Of note, GSK-3β has also been involved in the modulation of inflammation and apoptosis, determining the delicate balance between immune tolerance/inflammation and neuronal survival/neurodegeneration. In this review, we have summarized the current acknowledgements about the role of the Wnt canonical pathway in the pathogenesis of some neurodegenerative diseases including Alzheimer's disease, cerebral ischemia, Parkinson's disease, Huntington's disease, multiple sclerosis and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, with particular regard to the main in vitro and in vivo studies in this field, by reviewing 85 research articles about.

  20. Targeting New Candidate Genes by Small Molecules Approaching Neurodegenerative Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Fan, Hueng-Chuen; Chi, Ching-Shiang; Cheng, Shin-Nan; Lee, Hsiu-Fen; Tsai, Jeng-Dau; Lin, Shinn-Zong; Harn, Horng-Jyh

    2015-01-01

    Neurodegenerative diseases (NDs) are among the most feared of the disorders that afflict humankind for the lack of specific diagnostic tests and effective treatments. Understanding the molecular, cellular, biochemical changes of NDs may hold therapeutic promise against debilitating central nerve system (CNS) disorders. In the present review, we summarized the clinical presentations and biology backgrounds of NDs, including Parkinson’s disease (PD), Huntington’s disease (HD), and Alzheimer’s disease (AD) and explored the role of molecular mechanisms, including dys-regulation of epigenetic control mechanisms, Ataxia-telangiectasia-mutated protein kinase (ATM), and neuroinflammation in the pathogenesis of NDs. Targeting these mechanisms may hold therapeutic promise against these devastating diseases. PMID:26712747

  1. iPSCs as a major opportunity to understand and cure age-related diseases.

    PubMed

    Lemey, Camille; Milhavet, Ollivier; Lemaitre, Jean-Marc

    2015-08-01

    Cellular senescence plays an important role in the process of aging and is often associated with age-related diseases. Senescence was originally considered as a barrier to cell reprogramming, however we developed a strategy to overcome this hurdle and derive induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) from senescent cells and cells from centenarians. Furthermore we showed that the newly generated iPSCs could be re-differentiated into fully rejuvenated cells. That has increased the known beneficial properties of iPSCs to include them as a tool to model age-related diseases or even to cure them through cell therapy. In this review, we describe the hallmarks of cellular senescence before presenting how we reprogrammed aged and senescent cells into iPSCs and obtained rejuvenated re-differentiated cells. Finally, we take an interest in the way iPSCs can be used to understand and cure age-related diseases and we present their advantages for patient-specific therapy.

  2. Creatine for neuroprotection in neurodegenerative disease: end of story?

    PubMed

    Bender, Andreas; Klopstock, Thomas

    2016-08-01

    Creatine (Cr) is a natural compound that plays an important role in cellular energy homeostasis. In addition, it ameliorates oxidative stress, glutamatergic excitotoxicity, and apoptosis in vitro as well as in vivo. Since these pathomechanisms are implicated to play a role in several neurodegenerative diseases, Cr supplementation as a neuroprotective strategy has received a lot of attention with several positive animal studies in models of Parkinson's disease (PD), Huntington's disease (HD), and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). This has led to a number of randomized clinical trials (RCT) with oral Cr supplementation, with durations up to 5 years. In this paper, we review the evidence and consequences stemming from these trials. In the case of PD, the initial phase II RCT was promising and led to a large and well-designed phase III trial, which, however, turned out to be negative for all outcome measures. None of the RCTs that have examined effects of Cr in ALS patients showed any clinical benefit. In HD, Cr in high doses (up to 30 g/day) was shown to slow down brain atrophy in premanifest Huntingtin mutation carriers. In spite of this, proof is still lacking that Cr can also have beneficial clinical effects in this group of patients, who will go on to develop HD symptoms. Taken together, the use of Cr supplementation has so far proved disappointing in clinical studies with a number of symptomatic neurodegenerative diseases.

  3. Mesenchymal stem cells for the treatment of neurodegenerative disease

    PubMed Central

    Joyce, Nanette; Annett, Geralyn; Wirthlin, Louisa; Olson, Scott; Bauer, Gerhard; Nolta, Jan A

    2010-01-01

    Mesenchymal stem cells/marrow stromal cells (MSCs) present a promising tool for cell therapy, and are currently being tested in US FDA-approved clinical trials for myocardial infarction, stroke, meniscus injury, limb ischemia, graft-versus-host disease and autoimmune disorders. They have been extensively tested and proven effective in preclinical studies for these and many other disorders. There is currently a great deal of interest in the use of MSCs to treat neurodegenerative diseases, in particular for those that are fatal and difficult to treat, such as Huntington's disease and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. Proposed regenerative approaches to neurological diseases using MSCs include cell therapies in which cells are delivered via intracerebral or intrathecal injection. Upon transplantation into the brain, MSCs promote endogenous neuronal growth, decrease apoptosis, reduce levels of free radicals, encourage synaptic connection from damaged neurons and regulate inflammation, primarily through paracrine actions. MSCs transplanted into the brain have been demonstrated to promote functional recovery by producing trophic factors that induce survival and regeneration of host neurons. Therapies will capitalize on the innate trophic support from MSCs or on augmented growth factor support, such as delivering brain-derived neurotrophic factor or glial-derived neurotrophic factor into the brain to support injured neurons, using genetically engineered MSCs as the delivery vehicles. Clinical trials for MSC injection into the CNS to treat traumatic brain injury and stroke are currently ongoing. The current data in support of applying MSC-based cellular therapies to the treatment of neurodegenerative disorders are discussed. PMID:21082892

  4. Creatine for neuroprotection in neurodegenerative disease: end of story?

    PubMed

    Bender, Andreas; Klopstock, Thomas

    2016-08-01

    Creatine (Cr) is a natural compound that plays an important role in cellular energy homeostasis. In addition, it ameliorates oxidative stress, glutamatergic excitotoxicity, and apoptosis in vitro as well as in vivo. Since these pathomechanisms are implicated to play a role in several neurodegenerative diseases, Cr supplementation as a neuroprotective strategy has received a lot of attention with several positive animal studies in models of Parkinson's disease (PD), Huntington's disease (HD), and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). This has led to a number of randomized clinical trials (RCT) with oral Cr supplementation, with durations up to 5 years. In this paper, we review the evidence and consequences stemming from these trials. In the case of PD, the initial phase II RCT was promising and led to a large and well-designed phase III trial, which, however, turned out to be negative for all outcome measures. None of the RCTs that have examined effects of Cr in ALS patients showed any clinical benefit. In HD, Cr in high doses (up to 30 g/day) was shown to slow down brain atrophy in premanifest Huntingtin mutation carriers. In spite of this, proof is still lacking that Cr can also have beneficial clinical effects in this group of patients, who will go on to develop HD symptoms. Taken together, the use of Cr supplementation has so far proved disappointing in clinical studies with a number of symptomatic neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:26748651

  5. Mesenchymal stem cells for the treatment of neurodegenerative disease.

    PubMed

    Joyce, Nanette; Annett, Geralyn; Wirthlin, Louisa; Olson, Scott; Bauer, Gerhard; Nolta, Jan A

    2010-11-01

    Mesenchymal stem cells/marrow stromal cells (MSCs) present a promising tool for cell therapy, and are currently being tested in US FDA-approved clinical trials for myocardial infarction, stroke, meniscus injury, limb ischemia, graft-versus-host disease and autoimmune disorders. They have been extensively tested and proven effective in preclinical studies for these and many other disorders. There is currently a great deal of interest in the use of MSCs to treat neurodegenerative diseases, in particular for those that are fatal and difficult to treat, such as Huntington's disease and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. Proposed regenerative approaches to neurological diseases using MSCs include cell therapies in which cells are delivered via intracerebral or intrathecal injection. Upon transplantation into the brain, MSCs promote endogenous neuronal growth, decrease apoptosis, reduce levels of free radicals, encourage synaptic connection from damaged neurons and regulate inflammation, primarily through paracrine actions. MSCs transplanted into the brain have been demonstrated to promote functional recovery by producing trophic factors that induce survival and regeneration of host neurons. Therapies will capitalize on the innate trophic support from MSCs or on augmented growth factor support, such as delivering brain-derived neurotrophic factor or glial-derived neurotrophic factor into the brain to support injured neurons, using genetically engineered MSCs as the delivery vehicles. Clinical trials for MSC injection into the CNS to treat traumatic brain injury and stroke are currently ongoing. The current data in support of applying MSC-based cellular therapies to the treatment of neurodegenerative disorders are discussed.

  6. Human embryonic stem cell therapies for neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Tomaskovic-Crook, Eva; Crook, Jeremy M

    2011-06-01

    There is a renewed enthusiasm for the clinical translation of human embryonic stem (hES) cells. This is abetted by putative clinically-compliant strategies for hES cell maintenance and directed differentiation, greater understanding of and accessibility to cells through formal cell registries and centralized cell banking for distribution, the revised US government policy on funding hES cell research, and paradoxically the discovery of induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells. Additionally, as we consider the constraints (practical and fiscal) of delivering cell therapies for global healthcare, the more efficient and economical application of allogeneic vs autologous treatments will bolster the clinical entry of hES cell derivatives. Neurodegenerative disorders such as Parkinson's disease are primary candidates for hES cell therapy, although there are significant hurdles to be overcome. The present review considers key advances and challenges to translating hES cells into novel therapies for neurodegenerative diseases, with special consideration given to Parkinson's disease and Alzheimer's disease. Importantly, despite the focus on degenerative brain disorders and hES cells, many of the issues canvassed by this review are relevant to systemic application of hES cells and other pluripotent stem cells such as iPS cells.

  7. Common cell biologic and biochemical changes in aging and age-related diseases of the eye: Toward new therapeutic approaches to age-related ocular diseases

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Reviews of information about age related macular degeneration (AMD), cataract, and glaucoma make it apparent that while each eye tissue has its own characteristic metabolism, structure and function, there are common perturbations to homeostasis that are associated with age-related dysfunction. The c...

  8. Regulation of protein homeostasis in neurodegenerative diseases: the role of coding and non-coding genes.

    PubMed

    Sin, Olga; Nollen, Ellen A A

    2015-11-01

    Protein homeostasis is fundamental for cell function and survival, because proteins are involved in all aspects of cellular function, ranging from cell metabolism and cell division to the cell's response to environmental challenges. Protein homeostasis is tightly regulated by the synthesis, folding, trafficking and clearance of proteins, all of which act in an orchestrated manner to ensure proteome stability. The protein quality control system is enhanced by stress response pathways, which take action whenever the proteome is challenged by environmental or physiological stress. Aging, however, damages the proteome, and such proteome damage is thought to be associated with aging-related diseases. In this review, we discuss the different cellular processes that define the protein quality control system and focus on their role in protein conformational diseases. We highlight the power of using small organisms to model neurodegenerative diseases and how these models can be exploited to discover genetic modulators of protein aggregation and toxicity. We also link findings from small model organisms to the situation in higher organisms and describe how some of the genetic modifiers discovered in organisms such as worms are functionally conserved throughout evolution. Finally, we demonstrate that the non-coding genome also plays a role in maintaining protein homeostasis. In all, this review highlights the importance of protein and RNA homeostasis in neurodegenerative diseases.

  9. Innate immunity and inflammation in ageing: a key for understanding age-related diseases

    PubMed Central

    Licastro, Federico; Candore, Giuseppina; Lio, Domenico; Porcellini, Elisa; Colonna-Romano, Giuseppina; Franceschi, Claudio; Caruso, Calogero

    2005-01-01

    The process of maintaining life for the individual is a constant struggle to preserve his/her integrity. This can come at a price when immunity is involved, namely systemic inflammation. Inflammation is not per se a negative phenomenon: it is the response of the immune system to the invasion of viruses or bacteria and other pathogens. During evolution the human organism was set to live 40 or 50 years; today, however, the immune system must remain active for much a longer time. This very long activity leads to a chronic inflammation that slowly but inexorably damages one or several organs: this is a typical phenomenon linked to ageing and it is considered the major risk factor for age-related chronic diseases. Alzheimer's disease, atherosclerosis, diabetes and even sarcopenia and cancer, just to mention a few – have an important inflammatory component, though disease progression seems also dependent on the genetic background of individuals. Emerging evidence suggests that pro-inflammatory genotypes are related to unsuccessful ageing, and, reciprocally, controlling inflammatory status may allow a better chance of successful ageing. In other words, age-related diseases are "the price we pay" for a life-long active immune system: this system has also the potential to harm us later, as its fine tuning becomes compromised. Our immune system has evolved to control pathogens, so pro-inflammatory responses are likely to be evolutionarily programmed to resist fatal infections with pathogens aggressively. Thus, inflammatory genotypes are an important and necessary part of the normal host responses to pathogens in early life, but the overproduction of inflammatory molecules might also cause immune-related inflammatory diseases and eventually death later. Therefore, low responder genotypes involved in regulation of innate defence mechanisms, might better control inflammatory responses and age-related disease development, resulting in an increased chance of long life survival

  10. Resting state brain networks and their implications in neurodegenerative disease

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sohn, William S.; Yoo, Kwangsun; Kim, Jinho; Jeong, Yong

    2012-10-01

    Neurons are the basic units of the brain, and form network by connecting via synapses. So far, there have been limited ways to measure the brain networks. Recently, various imaging modalities are widely used for this purpose. In this paper, brain network mapping using resting state fMRI will be introduced with several applications including neurodegenerative disease such as Alzheimer's disease, frontotemporal lobar degeneration and Parkinson's disease. The resting functional connectivity using intrinsic functional connectivity in mouse is useful since we can take advantage of perturbation or stimulation of certain nodes of the network. The study of brain connectivity will open a new era in understanding of brain and diseases thus will be an essential foundation for future research.

  11. Opportunities and challenges of pluripotent stem cell neurodegenerative disease models.

    PubMed

    Sandoe, Jackson; Eggan, Kevin

    2013-07-01

    Human neurodegenerative disorders are among the most difficult to study. In particular, the inability to readily obtain the faulty cell types most relevant to these diseases has impeded progress for decades. Recent advances in pluripotent stem cell technology now grant access to substantial quantities of disease-pertinent neurons both with and without predisposing mutations. While this suite of technologies has revolutionized the field of 'in vitro disease modeling', great care must be taken in their deployment if robust, durable discoveries are to be made. Here we review what we perceive to be several of the stumbling blocks in the use of stem cells for the study of neurological disease and offer strategies to overcome them.

  12. Discover the network mechanisms underlying the connections between aging and age-related diseases.

    PubMed

    Yang, Jialiang; Huang, Tao; Song, Won-Min; Petralia, Francesca; Mobbs, Charles V; Zhang, Bin; Zhao, Yong; Schadt, Eric E; Zhu, Jun; Tu, Zhidong

    2016-01-01

    Although our knowledge of aging has greatly expanded in the past decades, it remains elusive why and how aging contributes to the development of age-related diseases (ARDs). In particular, a global mechanistic understanding of the connections between aging and ARDs is yet to be established. We rely on a network modelling named "GeroNet" to study the connections between aging and more than a hundred diseases. By evaluating topological connections between aging genes and disease genes in over three thousand subnetworks corresponding to various biological processes, we show that aging has stronger connections with ARD genes compared to non-ARD genes in subnetworks corresponding to "response to decreased oxygen levels", "insulin signalling pathway", "cell cycle", etc. Based on subnetwork connectivity, we can correctly "predict" if a disease is age-related and prioritize the biological processes that are involved in connecting to multiple ARDs. Using Alzheimer's disease (AD) as an example, GeroNet identifies meaningful genes that may play key roles in connecting aging and ARDs. The top modules identified by GeroNet in AD significantly overlap with modules identified from a large scale AD brain gene expression experiment, supporting that GeroNet indeed reveals the underlying biological processes involved in the disease. PMID:27582315

  13. Discover the network mechanisms underlying the connections between aging and age-related diseases

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Jialiang; Huang, Tao; Song, Won-min; Petralia, Francesca; Mobbs, Charles V.; Zhang, Bin; Zhao, Yong; Schadt, Eric E.; Zhu, Jun; Tu, Zhidong

    2016-01-01

    Although our knowledge of aging has greatly expanded in the past decades, it remains elusive why and how aging contributes to the development of age-related diseases (ARDs). In particular, a global mechanistic understanding of the connections between aging and ARDs is yet to be established. We rely on a network modelling named “GeroNet” to study the connections between aging and more than a hundred diseases. By evaluating topological connections between aging genes and disease genes in over three thousand subnetworks corresponding to various biological processes, we show that aging has stronger connections with ARD genes compared to non-ARD genes in subnetworks corresponding to “response to decreased oxygen levels”, “insulin signalling pathway”, “cell cycle”, etc. Based on subnetwork connectivity, we can correctly “predict” if a disease is age-related and prioritize the biological processes that are involved in connecting to multiple ARDs. Using Alzheimer’s disease (AD) as an example, GeroNet identifies meaningful genes that may play key roles in connecting aging and ARDs. The top modules identified by GeroNet in AD significantly overlap with modules identified from a large scale AD brain gene expression experiment, supporting that GeroNet indeed reveals the underlying biological processes involved in the disease. PMID:27582315

  14. The Age-Related Eye Disease Study (AREDS): Design Implications AREDS Report No. 1

    PubMed Central

    2006-01-01

    The Age-Related Eye Disease Study (AREDS) was initially conceived as a long-term multicenter, prospective study of the clinical course of age-related macular degeneration (AMD) and age-related cataract. Data on progression rates and risk factors from the study will increase understanding of the clinical course of both conditions, generate hypotheses about etiology, and aid in the design of clinical trials of potential interventions. In addition to collecting natural history data, AREDS includes a clinical trial of high-dose vitamin and mineral supplements for AMD and a clinical trial of high-dose vitamin supplements for cataract. The clinical trials were initiated largely because of the widespread public use in the United States of commercially available pharmacologic doses of vitamins and minerals to treat these two eye conditions and the absence of definitive studies on the safety and efficacy of their use. Important design issues for the clinical trials include: defining cataract and AMD, estimating event rates, determining the type and dosage of vitamins and minerals to be tested for each condition, and identifying the parameters necessary for monitoring safety and efficacy. This paper describes the AREDS design, including the study rationale and operational structure, and the approach adopted to combine, for two diseases, clinical trials with a natural history study. PMID:10588299

  15. Corruption and spread of pathogenic proteins in neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Walker, Lary C; LeVine, Harry

    2012-09-28

    With advancing age, the brain becomes increasingly susceptible to neurodegenerative diseases, most of which are characterized by the misfolding and errant aggregation of certain proteins. The induction of aggregation involves a crystallization-like seeding mechanism by which a specific protein is structurally corrupted by its misfolded conformer. The latest research indicates that, once formed, proteopathic seeds can spread from one locale to another via cellular uptake, transport, and release. Impeding this process could represent a unified therapeutic strategy for slowing the progression of a wide range of currently intractable disorders.

  16. Inefficient DNA Repair Is an Aging-Related Modifier of Parkinson's Disease.

    PubMed

    Sepe, Sara; Milanese, Chiara; Gabriels, Sylvia; Derks, Kasper W J; Payan-Gomez, Cesar; van IJcken, Wilfred F J; Rijksen, Yvonne M A; Nigg, Alex L; Moreno, Sandra; Cerri, Silvia; Blandini, Fabio; Hoeijmakers, Jan H J; Mastroberardino, Pier G

    2016-05-31

    The underlying relation between Parkinson's disease (PD) etiopathology and its major risk factor, aging, is largely unknown. In light of the causative link between genome stability and aging, we investigate a possible nexus between DNA damage accumulation, aging, and PD by assessing aging-related DNA repair pathways in laboratory animal models and humans. We demonstrate that dermal fibroblasts from PD patients display flawed nucleotide excision repair (NER) capacity and that Ercc1 mutant mice with mildly compromised NER exhibit typical PD-like pathological alterations, including decreased striatal dopaminergic innervation, increased phospho-synuclein levels, and defects in mitochondrial respiration. Ercc1 mouse mutants are also more sensitive to the prototypical PD toxin MPTP, and their transcriptomic landscape shares important similarities with that of PD patients. Our results demonstrate that specific defects in DNA repair impact the dopaminergic system and are associated with human PD pathology and might therefore constitute an age-related risk factor for PD. PMID:27210754

  17. Inefficient DNA Repair Is an Aging-Related Modifier of Parkinson's Disease.

    PubMed

    Sepe, Sara; Milanese, Chiara; Gabriels, Sylvia; Derks, Kasper W J; Payan-Gomez, Cesar; van IJcken, Wilfred F J; Rijksen, Yvonne M A; Nigg, Alex L; Moreno, Sandra; Cerri, Silvia; Blandini, Fabio; Hoeijmakers, Jan H J; Mastroberardino, Pier G

    2016-05-31

    The underlying relation between Parkinson's disease (PD) etiopathology and its major risk factor, aging, is largely unknown. In light of the causative link between genome stability and aging, we investigate a possible nexus between DNA damage accumulation, aging, and PD by assessing aging-related DNA repair pathways in laboratory animal models and humans. We demonstrate that dermal fibroblasts from PD patients display flawed nucleotide excision repair (NER) capacity and that Ercc1 mutant mice with mildly compromised NER exhibit typical PD-like pathological alterations, including decreased striatal dopaminergic innervation, increased phospho-synuclein levels, and defects in mitochondrial respiration. Ercc1 mouse mutants are also more sensitive to the prototypical PD toxin MPTP, and their transcriptomic landscape shares important similarities with that of PD patients. Our results demonstrate that specific defects in DNA repair impact the dopaminergic system and are associated with human PD pathology and might therefore constitute an age-related risk factor for PD.

  18. [The relationship between the polymorphism of immunity genes and both aging and age-related diseases].

    PubMed

    Ruan, Qing-Wei; Yu, Zhuo-Wei; Bao, Zhi-Jun; Ma, Yong-Xing

    2013-07-01

    Aging is acommon, progressive and irreversible state of multi-cell dysfunction. Immune aging mainly includes the declines of regenerative capacity and lymphoid lineage differentiation potential, the hyporesponsive to infection and vaccination, the hyperresponsive in the context of inflammatory pathology, and the increased risk of autoimmunity. The dysfunction of aged immune system accelerates the occurrence of aging and age-related diseases. The mutation of immunity genes that affect immune responses accelerates or slows aging process and age-related diseases. The frequencies of acquired immunity genes, such as immune protective HLA II DRB1*11 and DRB*16-associated haplotype, are increased in the longevity populations. The increased susceptibility of immune inflammatory response, morbidity and mortality in the elderly is often associated with decreased frequencies of anti-inflammatory factor IL-10 -1082G allele, TNF-β1 haplotype cnd10T/C, cnd25G/G, -988C/C, -800G/A, low proinflammatory fator TNFa level related extended TNF-A genotype -1031C/C, -863C/A, -857C/C, IL-6-174 CC and IFN-γ+874 T allele as well. The innate immunity genes, such as highly expressed anti-inflammatory +896 G KIR4 allele, CCR5Δ32 variant, -765 C Cox-2 allele, -1708 G and 21 C 5-Lox alleles are detected in centenarians. In age-related diseases, a higher CMV-specific IgG antibody level in elderly individuals is associated with a decreased frequency of KIR haplotypes KIR2DS5 and A1B10 and an increased frequency of MBL2 haplotypes LYPB, LYQC and HYPD that result in the absence of MBL2 protein. The increased frequencies of CRP ATG haplotypes and CFH 402 His allele indicate high mortality in the elderly. In the present study, we review the advances in the polymorphism and haplotype of innate and adoptive immunity genes, and their association with both aging and age-related diseases. To strengthen the analysis of extended haplotypes, epigenetic studies of immunity genes and genetic study of

  19. Neural basis of interpersonal traits in neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Sollberger, Marc; Stanley, Christine M; Wilson, Stephen M; Gyurak, Anett; Beckman, Victoria; Growdon, Matthew; Jang, Jung; Weiner, Michael W; Miller, Bruce L; Rankin, Katherine P

    2009-11-01

    Several functional and structural imaging studies have investigated the neural basis of personality in healthy adults, but human lesions studies are scarce. Personality changes are a common symptom in patients with neurodegenerative diseases like frontotemporal dementia (FTD) and semantic dementia (SD), allowing a unique window into the neural basis of personality. In this study, we used the Interpersonal Adjective Scales to investigate the structural basis of eight interpersonal traits (dominance, arrogance, coldness, introversion, submissiveness, ingenuousness, warmth, and extraversion) in 257 subjects: 214 patients with neurodegenerative diseases such as FTD, SD, progressive nonfluent aphasia, Alzheimer's disease, amnestic mild cognitive impairment, corticobasal degeneration, and progressive supranuclear palsy and 43 healthy elderly people. Measures of interpersonal traits were correlated with regional atrophy pattern using voxel-based morphometry (VBM) analysis of structural MR images. Interpersonal traits mapped onto distinct brain regions depending on the degree to which they involved agency and affiliation. Interpersonal traits high in agency related to left dorsolateral prefrontal and left lateral frontopolar regions, whereas interpersonal traits high in affiliation related to right ventromedial prefrontal and right anteromedial temporal regions. Consistent with the existing literature on neural networks underlying social cognition, these results indicate that brain regions related to externally focused, executive control-related processes underlie agentic interpersonal traits such as dominance, whereas brain regions related to internally focused, emotion- and reward-related processes underlie affiliative interpersonal traits such as warmth. In addition, these findings indicate that interpersonal traits are subserved by complex neural networks rather than discrete anatomic areas.

  20. MicroRNAs in neurodegenerative diseases and their therapeutic potential.

    PubMed

    Junn, Eunsung; Mouradian, M Maral

    2012-02-01

    MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are abundant, endogenous, short, noncoding RNAs that act as important post-transcriptional regulators of gene expression by base-pairing with their target mRNA. During the last decade, substantial knowledge has accumulated regarding the biogenesis of miRNAs, their molecular mechanisms and functional roles in a variety of cellular contexts. Altered expression of certain miRNA molecules in the brains of patients with neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer and Parkinson suggests that miRNAs could have a crucial regulatory role in these disorders. Polymorphisms in miRNA target sites may also constitute an important determinant of disease risk. Additionally, emerging evidence points to specific miRNAs targeting and regulating the expression of particular proteins that are key to disease pathogenesis. Considering that the amount of these proteins in susceptible neuronal populations appears to be critical to neurodegeneration, miRNA-mediated regulation represents a new target of significant therapeutic prospects. In this review, the implications of miRNAs in several neurodegenerative disorders and their potential as therapeutic interventions are discussed.

  1. The Importance of Tau Phosphorylation for Neurodegenerative Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Noble, Wendy; Hanger, Diane P.; Miller, Christopher C. J.; Lovestone, Simon

    2013-01-01

    Fibrillar deposits of highly phosphorylated tau are a key pathological feature of several neurodegenerative tauopathies including Alzheimer’s disease (AD) and some frontotemporal dementias. Increasing evidence suggests that the presence of these end-stage neurofibrillary lesions do not cause neuronal loss, but rather that alterations to soluble tau proteins induce neurodegeneration. In particular, aberrant tau phosphorylation is acknowledged to be a key disease process, influencing tau structure, distribution, and function in neurons. Although typically described as a cytosolic protein that associates with microtubules and regulates axonal transport, several additional functions of tau have recently been demonstrated, including roles in DNA stabilization, and synaptic function. Most recently, studies examining the trans-synaptic spread of tau pathology in disease models have suggested a potential role for extracellular tau in cell signaling pathways intrinsic to neurodegeneration. Here we review the evidence showing that tau phosphorylation plays a key role in neurodegenerative tauopathies. We also comment on the tractability of altering phosphorylation-dependent tau functions for therapeutic intervention in AD and related disorders. PMID:23847585

  2. Endogenously Nitrated Proteins in Mouse Brain: Links To Neurodegenerative Disease

    SciTech Connect

    Sacksteder, Colette A.; Qian, Weijun; Knyushko, Tanya V.; Wang, Haixing H.; Chin, Mark H.; Lacan, Goran; Melega, William P.; Camp, David G.; Smith, Richard D.; Smith, Desmond J.; Squier, Thomas C.; Bigelow, Diana J.

    2006-07-04

    Increased nitrotyrosine modification of proteins has been documented in multiple pathologies in a variety of tissue types; emerging evidence suggests its additional role in redox regulation of normal metabolism. In order to identify proteins sensitive to nitrating conditions in vivo, a comprehensive proteomic dataset identifying 7,792 proteins from whole mouse brain, generated by LC/LC-MS/MS analyses, was used to identify nitrated proteins. This analysis resulted in identification of 31 unique nitrotyrosine sites within 29 different proteins. Over half of the nitrated proteins identified have been reported to be involved in Parkinson's disease, Alzheimer's disease, or other neurodegenerative disorders. Similarly, nitrotyrosine immunoblots of whole brain homogenates show that treatment of mice with 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP), an experimental model of Parkinson's disease, induces increased nitration of the same protein bands observed to be nitrated in brains of untreated animals. Comparing sequences and available high resolution structures around nitrated tyrosines with those of unmodified sites indicates a preference of nitration in vivo for surface accessible tyrosines in loops, characteristics consistent with peroxynitrite-induced tyrosine modification. More striking is the five-fold greater nitration of tyrosines having nearby basic sidechains, suggesting electrostatic attraction of basic groups with the negative charge of peroxynitrite. Together, these results suggest that elevated peroxynitrite generation plays a role in neurodegenerative changes in the brain and provides a predictive tool of functionally important sites of nitration.

  3. Induced neural stem cells (iNSCs) in neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Hermann, Andreas; Storch, Alexander

    2013-09-01

    Recent advances in somatic cell reprogramming is one of the most important developments in neuroscience in the last decades since it offers for the first time the opportunity to work with disease/patient-specific neurons or other neural cell types. Induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) can be differentiated into all cell types of the body enabling investigations not only on neurons but also on muscle or endothelial cells which are cell types often also of great interest in neurodegenerative diseases. The novel technology of direct lineage conversion of somatic cells into neurons (induced neurons; iNs) or into expandable multipotent neural stem cells (induced neural stem cells; iNSCs) provides interesting alternatives to the iPSC technology. These techniques have the advantage of easier cell culture, but only neurons (iNs) or neuroectodermal cells (iNSCs) can be generated. Although there are several open questions coming along with these new neural cell types, they hold great promises for both cell replacement and cell modelling of neurodegenerative diseases.

  4. MicroRNAs: novel therapeutic targets in neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Roshan, Reema; Ghosh, Tanay; Scaria, Vinod; Pillai, Beena

    2009-12-01

    The prevalence of neurodegenerative disorders is rising steadily as human life expectancy increases. However, limited knowledge of the molecular basis of disease pathogenesis is a major hurdle in the identification of drug targets and development of therapeutic strategies for these largely incurable disorders. Recently, differential expression of endogenous regulatory small RNAs, known as 'microRNAs' (miRNAs), in patients of Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease and models of ataxia suggest that they might have key regulatory roles in neurodegeneration. miRNAs that can target known mediators of neurodegeneration offer potential therapeutic targets. Our bioinformatic analysis suggests novel miRNA-target interactions that could potentially influence neurodegeneration. The recent development of molecules that alter miRNA expression promises valuable tools that will enhance the therapeutic potential of miRNAs.

  5. Research on neurodegenerative diseases using induced pluripotent stem cells.

    PubMed

    Imamura, Keiko; Inoue, Haruhisa

    2012-06-01

    Induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSC) are derived from somatic cells. These somatic cells have had their gene expression experimentally reprogrammed to an embryonic stem cell-like pluripotent state, gaining the capacity to differentiate various cell types in the three embryonic germ layers. Thus, iPSC technology makes it possible to obtain neuronal cells from any human cells. iPSC can be generated from various kinds of somatic cells and from patients with neurodegenerative diseases. Disease modelling using iPSC technology would elucidate the pathogenesis of such diseases and contribute to related drug discoveries. In this review, we discuss the recent advances in iPSC technology as well as its potential applications.

  6. Cellular responses following retinal injuries and therapeutic approaches for neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Cuenca, Nicolás; Fernández-Sánchez, Laura; Campello, Laura; Maneu, Victoria; De la Villa, Pedro; Lax, Pedro; Pinilla, Isabel

    2014-11-01

    Retinal neurodegenerative diseases like age-related macular degeneration, glaucoma, diabetic retinopathy and retinitis pigmentosa each have a different etiology and pathogenesis. However, at the cellular and molecular level, the response to retinal injury is similar in all of them, and results in morphological and functional impairment of retinal cells. This retinal degeneration may be triggered by gene defects, increased intraocular pressure, high levels of blood glucose, other types of stress or aging, but they all frequently induce a set of cell signals that lead to well-established and similar morphological and functional changes, including controlled cell death and retinal remodeling. Interestingly, an inflammatory response, oxidative stress and activation of apoptotic pathways are common features in all these diseases. Furthermore, it is important to note the relevant role of glial cells, including astrocytes, Müller cells and microglia, because their response to injury is decisive for maintaining the health of the retina or its degeneration. Several therapeutic approaches have been developed to preserve retinal function or restore eyesight in pathological conditions. In this context, neuroprotective compounds, gene therapy, cell transplantation or artificial devices should be applied at the appropriate stage of retinal degeneration to obtain successful results. This review provides an overview of the common and distinctive features of retinal neurodegenerative diseases, including the molecular, anatomical and functional changes caused by the cellular response to damage, in order to establish appropriate treatments for these pathologies.

  7. Role of the Retromer Complex in Neurodegenerative Diseases.

    PubMed

    Li, Chaosi; Shah, Syed Zahid Ali; Zhao, Deming; Yang, Lifeng

    2016-01-01

    The retromer complex is a protein complex that plays a central role in endosomal trafficking. Retromer dysfunction has been linked to a growing number of neurological disorders. The process of intracellular trafficking and recycling is crucial for maintaining normal intracellular homeostasis, which is partly achieved through the activity of the retromer complex. The retromer complex plays a primary role in sorting endosomal cargo back to the cell surface for reuse, to the trans-Golgi network (TGN), or alternatively to specialized endomembrane compartments, in which the cargo is not subjected to lysosomal-mediated degradation. In most cases, the retromer acts as a core that interacts with associated proteins, including sorting nexin family member 27 (SNX27), members of the vacuolar protein sorting 10 (VPS10) receptor family, the major endosomal actin polymerization-promoting complex known as Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome protein and scar homolog (WASH), and other proteins. Some of the molecules carried by the retromer complex are risk factors for neurodegenerative diseases. Defects such as haplo-insufficiency or mutations in one or several units of the retromer complex lead to various pathologies. Here, we summarize the molecular architecture of the retromer complex and the roles of this system in intracellular trafficking related the pathogenesis of neurodegenerative diseases.

  8. Genetic susceptibility testing for neurodegenerative diseases: Ethical and practice issues

    PubMed Central

    Roberts, J. Scott; Uhlmann, Wendy R.

    2013-01-01

    As the genetics of neurodegenerative disease become better understood, opportunities for genetic susceptibility testing for at-risk individuals will increase. Such testing raises important ethical and practice issues related to test access, informed consent, risk estimation and communication, return of results, and policies to prevent genetic discrimination. The advent of direct-to-consumer genetic susceptibility testing for various neurodegenerative disorders (including Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, and certain prion diseases) means that ethical and practical challenges must be faced not only in traditional research and clinical settings, but also in broader society. This review addresses several topics relevant to the development and implementation of genetic susceptibility tests across research, clinical, and consumer settings; these include appropriate indications for testing, the implications of different methods for disclosing test results, clinical versus personal utility of risk information, psychological and behavioral responses to test results, testing of minors, genetic discrimination, and ethical dilemmas posed by whole-genome sequencing. We also identify future areas of likely growth in the field, including pharmacogenomics and genetic screening for individuals considering or engaged in activities that pose elevated risk of brain injury (e.g., football players, military personnel). APOE gene testing for risk of Alzheimer’s disease is used throughout as an instructive case example, drawing upon the authors’ experience as investigators in a series of multisite randomized clinical trials that have examined the impact of disclosing APOE genotype status to interested individuals (e.g., first-degree relatives, persons with mild cognitive impairment). PMID:23583530

  9. Neurofilament Light Chain in Blood and CSF as Marker of Disease Progression in Mouse Models and in Neurodegenerative Diseases.

    PubMed

    Bacioglu, Mehtap; Maia, Luis F; Preische, Oliver; Schelle, Juliane; Apel, Anja; Kaeser, Stephan A; Schweighauser, Manuel; Eninger, Timo; Lambert, Marius; Pilotto, Andrea; Shimshek, Derya R; Neumann, Ulf; Kahle, Philipp J; Staufenbiel, Matthias; Neumann, Manuela; Maetzler, Walter; Kuhle, Jens; Jucker, Mathias

    2016-07-01

    A majority of current disease-modifying therapeutic approaches for age-related neurodegenerative diseases target their characteristic proteopathic lesions (α-synuclein, Tau, Aβ). To monitor such treatments, fluid biomarkers reflecting the underlying disease process are crucial. We found robust increases of neurofilament light chain (NfL) in CSF and blood in murine models of α-synucleinopathies, tauopathy, and β-amyloidosis. Blood and CSF NfL levels were strongly correlated, and NfL increases coincided with the onset and progression of the corresponding proteopathic lesions in brain. Experimental induction of α-synuclein lesions increased CSF and blood NfL levels, while blocking Aβ lesions attenuated the NfL increase. Consistently, we also found NfL increases in CSF and blood of human α-synucleinopathies, tauopathies, and Alzheimer's disease. Our results suggest that CSF and particularly blood NfL can serve as a reliable and easily accessible biomarker to monitor disease progression and treatment response in mouse models and potentially in human proteopathic neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:27292537

  10. Neurofilament Light Chain in Blood and CSF as Marker of Disease Progression in Mouse Models and in Neurodegenerative Diseases.

    PubMed

    Bacioglu, Mehtap; Maia, Luis F; Preische, Oliver; Schelle, Juliane; Apel, Anja; Kaeser, Stephan A; Schweighauser, Manuel; Eninger, Timo; Lambert, Marius; Pilotto, Andrea; Shimshek, Derya R; Neumann, Ulf; Kahle, Philipp J; Staufenbiel, Matthias; Neumann, Manuela; Maetzler, Walter; Kuhle, Jens; Jucker, Mathias

    2016-07-01

    A majority of current disease-modifying therapeutic approaches for age-related neurodegenerative diseases target their characteristic proteopathic lesions (α-synuclein, Tau, Aβ). To monitor such treatments, fluid biomarkers reflecting the underlying disease process are crucial. We found robust increases of neurofilament light chain (NfL) in CSF and blood in murine models of α-synucleinopathies, tauopathy, and β-amyloidosis. Blood and CSF NfL levels were strongly correlated, and NfL increases coincided with the onset and progression of the corresponding proteopathic lesions in brain. Experimental induction of α-synuclein lesions increased CSF and blood NfL levels, while blocking Aβ lesions attenuated the NfL increase. Consistently, we also found NfL increases in CSF and blood of human α-synucleinopathies, tauopathies, and Alzheimer's disease. Our results suggest that CSF and particularly blood NfL can serve as a reliable and easily accessible biomarker to monitor disease progression and treatment response in mouse models and potentially in human proteopathic neurodegenerative diseases.

  11. Proteomic analysis of specific brain proteins in aged SAMP8 mice treated with alpha-lipoic acid: implications for aging and age-related neurodegenerative disorders.

    PubMed

    Poon, H Fai; Farr, Susan A; Thongboonkerd, Visith; Lynn, Bert C; Banks, William A; Morley, John E; Klein, Jon B; Butterfield, D Allan

    2005-01-01

    Free radical-mediated damage to neuronal membrane components has been implicated in the etiology of Alzheimer's disease (AD) and aging. The senescence accelerated prone mouse strain 8 (SAMP8) exhibits age-related deterioration in memory and learning along with increased oxidative markers. Therefore, SAMP8 is a suitable model to study brain aging and, since aging is the major risk factor for AD and SAMP8 exhibits many of the biochemical findings of AD, perhaps as a model for and the early phase of AD. Our previous studies reported higher oxidative stress markers in brains of 12-month-old SAMP8 mice when compared to that of 4-month-old SAMP8 mice. Further, we have previously shown that injecting the mice with alpha-lipoic acid (LA) reversed brain lipid peroxidation, protein oxidation, as well as the learning and memory impairments in SAMP8 mice. Recently, we reported the use of proteomics to identify proteins that are expressed differently and/or modified oxidatively in aged SAMP8 brains. In order to understand how LA reverses the learning and memory deficits of aged SAMP8 mice, in the current study, we used proteomics to compare the expression levels and specific carbonyl levels of proteins in brains from 12-month-old SAMP8 mice treated or not treated with LA. We found that the expressions of the three brain proteins (neurofilament triplet L protein, alpha-enolase, and ubiquitous mitochondrial creatine kinase) were increased significantly and that the specific carbonyl levels of the three brain proteins (lactate dehydrogenase B, dihydropyrimidinase-like protein 2, and alpha-enolase) were significantly decreased in the aged SAMP8 mice treated with LA. These findings suggest that the improved learning and memory observed in LA-injected SAMP8 mice may be related to the restoration of the normal condition of specific proteins in aged SAMP8 mouse brain. Moreover, our current study implicates neurofilament triplet L protein, alpha-enolase, ubiquitous mitochondrial

  12. The role of DNA methylation in aging, rejuvenation, and age-related disease.

    PubMed

    Johnson, Adiv A; Akman, Kemal; Calimport, Stuart R G; Wuttke, Daniel; Stolzing, Alexandra; de Magalhães, João Pedro

    2012-10-01

    DNA methylation is a major control program that modulates gene expression in a plethora of organisms. Gene silencing through methylation occurs through the activity of DNA methyltransferases, enzymes that transfer a methyl group from S-adenosyl-L-methionine to the carbon 5 position of cytosine. DNA methylation patterns are established by the de novo DNA methyltransferases (DNMTs) DNMT3A and DNMT3B and are subsequently maintained by DNMT1. Aging and age-related diseases include defined changes in 5-methylcytosine content and are generally characterized by genome-wide hypomethylation and promoter-specific hypermethylation. These changes in the epigenetic landscape represent potential disease biomarkers and are thought to contribute to age-related pathologies, such as cancer, osteoarthritis, and neurodegeneration. Some diseases, such as a hereditary form of sensory neuropathy accompanied by dementia, are directly caused by methylomic changes. Epigenetic modifications, however, are reversible and are therefore a prime target for therapeutic intervention. Numerous drugs that specifically target DNMTs are being tested in ongoing clinical trials for a variety of cancers, and data from finished trials demonstrate that some, such as 5-azacytidine, may even be superior to standard care. DNMTs, demethylases, and associated partners are dynamically shaping the methylome and demonstrate great promise with regard to rejuvenation.

  13. The Role of DNA Methylation in Aging, Rejuvenation, and Age-Related Disease

    PubMed Central

    Johnson, Adiv A.; Akman, Kemal; Calimport, Stuart R.G.; Wuttke, Daniel; de Magalhães, João Pedro

    2012-01-01

    Abstract DNA methylation is a major control program that modulates gene expression in a plethora of organisms. Gene silencing through methylation occurs through the activity of DNA methyltransferases, enzymes that transfer a methyl group from S-adenosyl-l-methionine to the carbon 5 position of cytosine. DNA methylation patterns are established by the de novo DNA methyltransferases (DNMTs) DNMT3A and DNMT3B and are subsequently maintained by DNMT1. Aging and age-related diseases include defined changes in 5-methylcytosine content and are generally characterized by genome-wide hypomethylation and promoter-specific hypermethylation. These changes in the epigenetic landscape represent potential disease biomarkers and are thought to contribute to age-related pathologies, such as cancer, osteoarthritis, and neurodegeneration. Some diseases, such as a hereditary form of sensory neuropathy accompanied by dementia, are directly caused by methylomic changes. Epigenetic modifications, however, are reversible and are therefore a prime target for therapeutic intervention. Numerous drugs that specifically target DNMTs are being tested in ongoing clinical trials for a variety of cancers, and data from finished trials demonstrate that some, such as 5-azacytidine, may even be superior to standard care. DNMTs, demethylases, and associated partners are dynamically shaping the methylome and demonstrate great promise with regard to rejuvenation. PMID:23098078

  14. Strategic white matter tracts for processing speed deficits in age-related small vessel disease

    PubMed Central

    Duering, Marco; Gesierich, Benno; Seiler, Stephan; Pirpamer, Lukas; Gonik, Mariya; Hofer, Edith; Jouvent, Eric; Duchesnay, Edouard; Chabriat, Hugues; Ropele, Stefan; Schmidt, Reinhold

    2014-01-01

    Objective: Cerebral small vessel disease is the most common cause of vascular cognitive impairment and typically manifests with slowed processing speed. We investigated the impact of lesion location on processing speed in age-related small vessel disease. Methods: A total of 584 community-dwelling elderly underwent brain MRI followed by segmentation of white matter hyperintensities. Processing speed was determined by the timed measure of the Trail Making Test part B. The impact of the location of white matter hyperintensities was assessed by voxel-based lesion-symptom mapping and graph-based statistical models on regional lesion volumes in major white matter tracts. Results: Voxel-based lesion-symptom mapping identified multiple voxel clusters where the presence of white matter hyperintensities was associated with slower performance on the Trail Making Test part B. Clusters were located bilaterally in the forceps minor and anterior thalamic radiation. Region of interest–based Bayesian network analyses on lesion volumes within major white matter tracts depicted the same tracts as direct predictors for an impaired Trail Making Test part B performance. Conclusions: Our findings highlight damage to frontal interhemispheric and thalamic projection fiber tracts harboring frontal-subcortical neuronal circuits as a predictor for processing speed performance in age-related small vessel disease. PMID:24793184

  15. Mutational Spectrum Analysis of Neurodegenerative Diseases and Its Pathogenic Implication.

    PubMed

    Shen, Liang; Ji, Hong-Fang

    2015-10-14

    One of the most conspicuous features of neurodegenerative diseases (NDs) is the occurrence of dramatic conformation change of individual proteins. We performed a mutational spectrum analysis of disease-causing missense mutations in seven types of NDs at nucleotide and amino acid levels, and compared the results with those of non-NDs. The main findings included: (i) The higher mutation ratio of G:C→T:A transversion to G:C→A:T transition was observed in NDs than in non-NDs, interpreting the excessive guanine-specific oxidative DNA damage in NDs; (ii) glycine and proline had highest mutability in NDs than in non-NDs, which favor the protein conformation change in NDs; (iii) surprisingly low mutation frequency of arginine was observed in NDs. These findings help to understand how mutations may cause NDs.

  16. Revisiting Metal Toxicity in Neurodegenerative Diseases and Stroke: Therapeutic Potential

    PubMed Central

    Mitra, Joy; Vasquez, Velmarini; Hegde, Pavana M; Boldogh, Istvan; Mitra, Sankar; Kent, Thomas A; Rao, Kosagi S; Hegde, Muralidhar L

    2015-01-01

    Excessive accumulation of pro-oxidant metals, observed in affected brain regions, has consistently been implicated as a contributor to the brain pathology including neurodegenerative diseases and acute injuries such as stroke. Furthermore, the potential interactions between metal toxicity and other commonly associated etiological factors, such as misfolding/aggregation of amyloidogenic proteins or genomic damage, are poorly understood. Decades of research provide compelling evidence implicating metal overload in neurological diseases and stroke. However, the utility of metal toxicity as a therapeutic target is controversial, possibly due to a lack of comprehensive understanding of metal dyshomeostasis-mediated neuronal pathology. In this article, we discuss the current understanding of metal toxicity and the challenges associated with metal-targeted therapies. PMID:25717476

  17. Probing Mechanisms That Underlie Human Neurodegenerative Diseases in Drosophila

    PubMed Central

    Jaiswal, M.; Sandoval, H.; Zhang, K.; Bayat, V.; Bellen, H.J.

    2013-01-01

    The fruit fly, Drosophila melanogaster, is an excellent organism for the study of the genetic and molecular basis of metazoan development. Drosophila provides numerous tools and reagents to unravel the molecular and cellular functions of genes that cause human disease, and the past decade has witnessed a significant expansion of the study of neurodegenerative disease mechanisms in flies. Here we review the interplay between oxidative stress and neuronal toxicity. We cover some of the studies that show how proteasome degradation of protein aggregates, autophagy, mitophagy, and lysosomal function affect the quality control mechanisms required for neuronal survival. We discuss how forward genetic screens in flies have led to the isolation of a few loci that cause neurodegeneration, paving the way for large-scale systematic screens to identify such loci in flies as well as promoting gene discovery in humans. PMID:22974305

  18. Neurodegenerative diseases: quantitative predictions of protein-RNA interactions.

    PubMed

    Cirillo, Davide; Agostini, Federico; Klus, Petr; Marchese, Domenica; Rodriguez, Silvia; Bolognesi, Benedetta; Tartaglia, Gian Gaetano

    2013-02-01

    Increasing evidence indicates that RNA plays an active role in a number of neurodegenerative diseases. We recently introduced a theoretical framework, catRAPID, to predict the binding ability of protein and RNA molecules. Here, we use catRAPID to investigate ribonucleoprotein interactions linked to inherited intellectual disability, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, Creutzfeuld-Jakob, Alzheimer's, and Parkinson's diseases. We specifically focus on (1) RNA interactions with fragile X mental retardation protein FMRP; (2) protein sequestration caused by CGG repeats; (3) noncoding transcripts regulated by TAR DNA-binding protein 43 TDP-43; (4) autogenous regulation of TDP-43 and FMRP; (5) iron-mediated expression of amyloid precursor protein APP and α-synuclein; (6) interactions between prions and RNA aptamers. Our results are in striking agreement with experimental evidence and provide new insights in processes associated with neuronal function and misfunction.

  19. Stress, Allostatic Load, Catecholamines, and Other Neurotransmitters in Neurodegenerative Diseases

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    As populations age, the prevalence of geriatric neurodegenerative diseases will increase. These diseases generally are multifactorial, arising from complex interactions among genes, environment, concurrent morbidities, treatments, and time. This essay provides a concept for the pathogenesis of Lewy body diseases such as Parkinson disease, by considering them in the context of allostasis and allostatic load. Allostasis reflects active, adaptive processes that maintain apparent steady states, via multiple, interacting effectors regulated by homeostatic comparators—“homeostats.” Stress can be defined as a condition or state in which a sensed discrepancy between afferent information and a setpoint for response leads to activation of effectors, reducing the discrepancy. “Allostatic load” refers to the consequences of sustained or repeated activation of mediators of allostasis. From the analogy of an idling car, the revolutions per minute of the engine can be maintained at any of a variety of levels (allostatic states). Just as allostatic load (cumulative wear and tear) reflects design and manufacturing variations, byproducts of combustion, and time, eventually leading to engine breakdown, allostatic load in catecholaminergic neurons might eventually lead to Lewy body diseases. Central to the argument is that catecholaminergic neurons leak vesicular contents into the cytoplasm continuously during life and that catecholamines in the neuronal cytoplasm are autotoxic. These neurons therefore depend on vesicular sequestration to limit autotoxicity of cytosolic transmitter. Parkinson disease might be a disease of the elderly because of allostatic load, which depends on genetic predispositions, environmental exposures, repeated stress-related catecholamine release, and time. PMID:22297542

  20. What can we learn about age-related macular degeneration from other retinal diseases?

    PubMed

    Zack, D J; Dean, M; Molday, R S; Nathans, J; Redmond, T M; Stone, E M; Swaroop, A; Valle, D; Weber, B H

    1999-11-01

    Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is increasingly recognized as a complex genetic disorder in which one or more genes contribute to an individual's susceptibility for developing the condition. Twin and family studies as well as population-based genetic epidemiologic methods have convincingly demonstrated the importance of genetics in AMD, though the extent of heritability, the number of genes involved, and the phenotypic and genetic heterogeneity of the condition remain unresolved. The extent to which other hereditary macular dystrophies such as Stargardts disease, familial radial drusen (malattia leventinese), Best's disease, and peripherin/RDS-related dystrophy are related to AMD remains unclear. Alzheimer's disease, another late onset, heterogeneous degenerative disorder of the central nervous system, offers a valuable model for identifying the issues that confront AMD genetics.

  1. Neuroanatomical correlates of cognitive self-appraisal in neurodegenerative disease.

    PubMed

    Rosen, Howard J; Alcantar, Oscar; Rothlind, Johannes; Sturm, Virginia; Kramer, Joel H; Weiner, Michael; Miller, Bruce L

    2010-02-15

    Self-appraisal is a critical cognitive function, which helps us to choose tasks based on an accurate assessment of our abilities. The neural mechanisms of self-appraisal are incompletely understood, although a growing body of literature suggests that several frontal and subcortical regions are important for self-related processing. Anosognosia, or lack of awareness of one's deficits, is common in neurodegenerative dementias, offering an important window onto the brain systems involved in self-appraisal. We examined the neuroanatomical basis of self-appraisal in a mixed group of 39 individuals, including 35 with cognitive impairment due to one of several probable neurodegenerative diseases, using voxel-based morphometry and an objective, neuropsychologically-based measure of self-appraisal accuracy. Self-appraisal accuracy was correlated with tissue content in the right ventromedial prefrontal cortex (vmPFC). We hypothesize that emotional/physiological processing carried out by vmPFC is an important factor mediating self-appraisal accuracy in dementia. PMID:19961939

  2. Neuroanatomical correlates of cognitive self-appraisal in neurodegenerative disease

    PubMed Central

    Rosen, Howard J.; Alcantar, Oscar; Rothlind, Johannes; Sturm, Virginia; Kramer, Joel H.; Weiner, Michael; Miller, Bruce L.

    2009-01-01

    Self-appraisal is a critical cognitive function, which helps us to choose tasks based on an accurate assessment of our abilities. The neural mechanisms of self-appraisal are incompletely understood, although a growing body of literature suggests that several frontal and subcortical regions are important for self-related processing. Anosognosia, or lack of awareness of one's deficits, is common in neurodegenerative dementias, offering an important window onto the brain systems involved in self-appraisal. We examined the neuroanatomical basis of self-appraisal in a mixed group of 39 individuals, including 35 with cognitive impairment due to one of several probable neurodegenerative diseases, using voxel-based morphometry and an objective, neuropsychologically-based measure of self-appraisal accuracy. Self-appraisal accuracy was correlated with tissue content in the right ventromedial prefrontal cortex (vmPFC). We hypothesize that emotional/physiological processing carried out by vmPFC is an important factor mediating self-appraisal accuracy in dementia. PMID:19961939

  3. Vitagenes, dietary antioxidants and neuroprotection in neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Calabrese, Vittorio; Cornelius, Carolin; Mancuso, Cesare; Barone, Eugenio; Calafato, Stella; Bates, Timothy; Rizzarelli, Enrico; Kostova, Albena T Dinkova

    2009-01-01

    The ability of a cell to counteract stressful conditions, known as cellular stress response, requires the activation of pro-survival pathways and the production of molecules with anti-oxidant, anti-apoptotic or pro-apoptotic activities. Among the cellular pathways conferring protection against oxidative stress, a key role is played by vitagenes, which include heat shock proteins (Hsps) heme oxygenase-1 and Hsp70, as well as the thioredoxin/thioredoxin reductase system. Heat shock response contributes to establish a cytoprotective state in a wide variety of human diseases, including inflammation, cancer, aging and neurodegenerative disorders. Given the broad cytoprotective properties of the heat shock response there is now strong interest in discovering and developing pharmacological agents capable of inducing stress responses. Dietary antioxidants, such as curcumin, L-carnitine/acetyl-L-carnitine and carnosine have recently been demonstrated in vitro to be neuroprotective through the activation of hormetic pathways, including vitagenes. In the present review we discuss the importance of vitagenes in the cellular stress response and analyse, from a pharmacological point of view, the potential use of dietary antioxidants in the treatment of neurodegenerative disorders in humans.

  4. Epigenetic Treatment of Neurodegenerative Disorders: Alzheimer and Parkinson Diseases.

    PubMed

    Irwin, Michael H; Moos, Walter H; Faller, Douglas V; Steliou, Kosta; Pinkert, Carl A

    2016-05-01

    Preclinical Research In this review, we discuss epigenetic-driven methods for treating neurodegenerative disorders associated with mitochondrial dysfunction, focusing on carnitinoid antioxidant-histone deacetylase inhibitors that show an ability to reinvigorate synaptic plasticity and protect against neuromotor decline in vivo. Aging remains a major risk factor in patients who progress to dementia, a clinical syndrome typified by decreased mental capacity, including impairments in memory, language skills, and executive function. Energy metabolism and mitochondrial dysfunction are viewed as determinants in the aging process that may afford therapeutic targets for a host of disease conditions, the brain being primary in such thinking. Mitochondrial dysfunction is a core feature in the pathophysiology of both Alzheimer and Parkinson diseases and rare mitochondrial diseases. The potential of new therapies in this area extends to glaucoma and other ophthalmic disorders, migraine, Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, post-traumatic stress disorder, systemic exertion intolerance disease, and chemotherapy-induced cognitive impairment. An emerging and hopefully more promising approach to addressing these hard-to-treat diseases leverages their sensitivity to activation of master regulators of antioxidant and cytoprotective genes, antioxidant response elements, and mitophagy. Drug Dev Res 77 : 109-123, 2016. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. PMID:26899010

  5. Strategies for molecular imaging dementia and neurodegenerative diseases

    PubMed Central

    Schaller, Bernhard J

    2008-01-01

    Dementia represents a heterogeneous term that has evolved to describe the behavioral syndromes associated with a variety of clinical and neuropathological changes during continuing degenerative disease of the brain. As such, there lacks a clear consensus regarding the neuropsychological and other constituent characteristics associated with various cerebrovascular changes in this disease process. But increasing this knowledge has given more insights into memory deterioration in patients suffering from Alzheimer’s disease and other subtypes of dementia. The author reviews current knowledge of the physiological coupling between cerebral blood flow and metabolism in the light of state-of-the-art-imaging methods and its changes in dementia with special reference to Alzheimer’s disease. Different imaging techniques are discussed with respect to their visualizing effect of biochemical, cellular, and/or structural changes in dementia. The pathophysiology of dementia in advanced age is becoming increasingly understood by revealing the underlying basis of neuropsychological changes with current imaging techniques, genetic and pathological features, which suggests that alterations of (neuro) vascular regulatory mechanisms may lead to brain dysfunction and disease. The current view is that cerebrovascular deregulation is seen as a contributor to cerebrovascular pathologies, such as stroke, but also to neurodegenerative conditions, such as Alzheimer’s disease. The better understanding of these (patho) physiological mechanisms may open an approach to new interventional strategies in dementia to enhance neurovascular repair and to protect neurovascular coupling. PMID:18830391

  6. Natural Compounds Preventing Neurodegenerative Diseases Through Autophagic Activation.

    PubMed

    Huang, Zhe; Adachi, Hiroaki

    2016-06-01

    Neurodegenerative diseases (NDDs) are a group of intractable diseases that significantly affect human health. To date, the pathogenesis of NDDs is still poorly understood and effective disease-modifying therapies for NDDs have not been established. NDDs share the common morphological characteristic of the deposition of abnormal proteins in the nervous system, including neurons. Autophagy is one of the major processes by which damaged organelles and abnormal proteins are removed from cells. Impairment of autophagy has been found to be involved in the pathogenesis of NDDs, and the regulation of autophagy may become a therapeutic strategy for NDDs. In recent years, some active compounds from plants have been found to regulate autophagy and exert neuroprotection against NDDs, including Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, Huntington's disease, spinal and bulbar muscular atrophy, spinocerebellar ataxia 3, and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, via activating autophagy. In this paper, we review recent advances in the use of active ingredients from plants for the regulation of autophagy and treatment of NDDs. PMID:27302727

  7. p53 and mitochondrial dysfunction: novel insight of neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Dai, Chun-Qiu; Luo, Ting-Ting; Luo, Shi-Cheng; Wang, Jia-Qi; Wang, Sheng-Ming; Bai, Yun-Hu; Yang, Yan-Ling; Wang, Ya-Yun

    2016-08-01

    Mitochondria are organelles responsible for vital cell functions. p53 is a transcription factor that regulates the DNA stability and cell growth normality. Recent studies revealed that p53 can influence mitochondrial function changing from normal condition to abnormal condition under different stress levels. In normal state, p53 can maintain mitochondrial respiration through transactivation of SCO2. When stress stimuli presents, SCO2 overexpresses and leads to ROS generation. ROS promotes p53 inducing MALM (Mieap-induced accumulation of lysosome-like organelles within mitochondria) to repair dysfunctional mitochondria and MIV (Mieap-induced vacuole) to accomplish damaged mitochondria degradation. If stress or damage is irreversible, p53 will translocate to mitochondria, leading into apoptosis or necrosis. Neurodegenerative diseases including Parkinson's disease, Huntington's disease and Alzheimer's disease are still lack of clear explanations of mechanisms, but more studies have revealed the functional relationship between mitochondria and p53 towards the pathological development of these diseases. In this review, we discuss that p53 plays the vital role in the function of mitochondria in the aspect of pathological change metabolism. We also analyze these diseases with novel targeted treating molecules which are related to p53 and mitochondria, hoping to present novel therapies in future clinic.

  8. p53 and mitochondrial dysfunction: novel insight of neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Dai, Chun-Qiu; Luo, Ting-Ting; Luo, Shi-Cheng; Wang, Jia-Qi; Wang, Sheng-Ming; Bai, Yun-Hu; Yang, Yan-Ling; Wang, Ya-Yun

    2016-08-01

    Mitochondria are organelles responsible for vital cell functions. p53 is a transcription factor that regulates the DNA stability and cell growth normality. Recent studies revealed that p53 can influence mitochondrial function changing from normal condition to abnormal condition under different stress levels. In normal state, p53 can maintain mitochondrial respiration through transactivation of SCO2. When stress stimuli presents, SCO2 overexpresses and leads to ROS generation. ROS promotes p53 inducing MALM (Mieap-induced accumulation of lysosome-like organelles within mitochondria) to repair dysfunctional mitochondria and MIV (Mieap-induced vacuole) to accomplish damaged mitochondria degradation. If stress or damage is irreversible, p53 will translocate to mitochondria, leading into apoptosis or necrosis. Neurodegenerative diseases including Parkinson's disease, Huntington's disease and Alzheimer's disease are still lack of clear explanations of mechanisms, but more studies have revealed the functional relationship between mitochondria and p53 towards the pathological development of these diseases. In this review, we discuss that p53 plays the vital role in the function of mitochondria in the aspect of pathological change metabolism. We also analyze these diseases with novel targeted treating molecules which are related to p53 and mitochondria, hoping to present novel therapies in future clinic. PMID:27422544

  9. Endogenously nitrated proteins in mouse brain: links to neurodegenerative disease.

    PubMed

    Sacksteder, Colette A; Qian, Wei-Jun; Knyushko, Tatyana V; Wang, Haixing; Chin, Mark H; Lacan, Goran; Melega, William P; Camp, David G; Smith, Richard D; Smith, Desmond J; Squier, Thomas C; Bigelow, Diana J

    2006-07-01

    Increased abundance of nitrotyrosine modifications of proteins have been documented in multiple pathologies in a variety of tissue types and play a role in the redox regulation of normal metabolism. To identify proteins sensitive to nitrating conditions in vivo, a comprehensive proteomic data set identifying 7792 proteins from a whole mouse brain, generated by LC/LC-MS/MS analyses, was used to identify nitrated proteins. This analysis resulted in the identification of 31 unique nitrotyrosine sites within 29 different proteins. More than half of the nitrated proteins that have been identified are involved in Parkinson's disease, Alzheimer's disease, or other neurodegenerative disorders. Similarly, nitrotyrosine immunoblots of whole brain homogenates show that treatment of mice with 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP), an experimental model of Parkinson's disease, induces an increased level of nitration of the same protein bands observed to be nitrated in brains of untreated animals. Comparing sequences and available high-resolution structures around nitrated tyrosines with those of unmodified sites indicates a preference of nitration in vivo for surface accessible tyrosines in loops, a characteristic consistent with peroxynitrite-induced tyrosine modification. In addition, most sequences contain cysteines or methionines proximal to nitrotyrosines, contrary to suggestions that these amino acid side chains prevent tyrosine nitration. More striking is the presence of a positively charged moiety near the sites of nitration, which is not observed for non-nitrated tyrosines. Together, these observations suggest a predictive tool of functionally important sites of nitration and that cellular nitrating conditions play a role in neurodegenerative changes in the brain.

  10. Aging Is Not a Disease: Distinguishing Age-Related Macular Degeneration from Aging

    PubMed Central

    Ardeljan, Daniel; Chan, Chi-Chao

    2013-01-01

    Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is a disease of the outer retina, characterized most significantly by atrophy of photoreceptors and retinal pigment epithelium accompanied with or without choroidal neovascularization. Development of AMD has been recognized as contingent on environmental and genetic risk factors, the strongest being advanced age. In this review, we highlight pathogenic changes that destabilize ocular homeostasis and promote AMD development. With normal aging, photoreceptors are steadily lost, Bruch's membrane thickens, the choroid thins, and hard drusen may form in the periphery. In AMD, many of these changes are exacerbated in addition to the development of disease-specific factors such as soft macular drusen. Para-inflammation, which can be thought of as an intermediate between basal and robust levels of inflammation, develops within the retina in an attempt to maintain ocular homeostasis, reflected by increased expression of the anti-inflammatory cytokine IL-10 coupled with shifts in macrophage plasticity from the pro-inflammatory M1 to the anti-inflammatory M2 polarization. In AMD, imbalances in the M1 and M2 populations together with activation of retinal microglia are observed and potentially contribute to tissue degeneration. Nonetheless, the retina persists in a state of chronic inflammation and increased expression of certain cytokines and inflammasomes is observed. Since not everyone develops AMD, the vital question to ask is how the body establishes a balance between normal age-related changes and the pathological phenotypes in AMD. PMID:23933169

  11. Aging is not a disease: distinguishing age-related macular degeneration from aging.

    PubMed

    Ardeljan, Daniel; Chan, Chi-Chao

    2013-11-01

    Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is a disease of the outer retina, characterized most significantly by atrophy of photoreceptors and retinal pigment epithelium accompanied with or without choroidal neovascularization. Development of AMD has been recognized as contingent on environmental and genetic risk factors, the strongest being advanced age. In this review, we highlight pathogenic changes that destabilize ocular homeostasis and promote AMD development. With normal aging, photoreceptors are steadily lost, Bruch's membrane thickens, the choroid thins, and hard drusen may form in the periphery. In AMD, many of these changes are exacerbated in addition to the development of disease-specific factors such as soft macular drusen. Para-inflammation, which can be thought of as an intermediate between basal and robust levels of inflammation, develops within the retina in an attempt to maintain ocular homeostasis, reflected by increased expression of the anti-inflammatory cytokine IL-10 coupled with shifts in macrophage plasticity from the pro-inflammatory M1 to the anti-inflammatory M2 polarization. In AMD, imbalances in the M1 and M2 populations together with activation of retinal microglia are observed and potentially contribute to tissue degeneration. Nonetheless, the retina persists in a state of chronic inflammation and increased expression of certain cytokines and inflammasomes is observed. Since not everyone develops AMD, the vital question to ask is how the body establishes a balance between normal age-related changes and the pathological phenotypes in AMD.

  12. NADPH oxidases: key modulators in aging and age-related cardiovascular diseases?

    PubMed Central

    Sahoo, Sanghamitra; Meijles, Daniel N.; Pagano, Patrick J.

    2016-01-01

    Reactive oxygen species (ROS) and oxidative stress have long been linked to aging and diseases prominent in the elderly such as hypertension, atherosclerosis, diabetes and atrial fibrillation (AF). NADPH oxidases (Nox) are a major source of ROS in the vasculature and are key players in mediating redox signalling under physiological and pathophysiological conditions. In this review, we focus on the Nox-mediated ROS signalling pathways involved in the regulation of ‘longevity genes’ and recapitulate their role in age-associated vascular changes and in the development of age-related cardiovascular diseases (CVDs). This review is predicated on burgeoning knowledge that Nox-derived ROS propagate tightly regulated yet varied signalling pathways, which, at the cellular level, may lead to diminished repair, the aging process and predisposition to CVDs. In addition, we briefly describe emerging Nox therapies and their potential in improving the health of the elderly population. PMID:26814203

  13. Gender-related immune-inflammatory factors, age-related diseases, and longevity.

    PubMed

    Candore, Giuseppina; Balistreri, Carmela Rita; Colonna-Romano, Giuseppina; Lio, Domenico; Listì, Florinda; Vasto, Sonya; Caruso, Calogero

    2010-01-01

    This review discusses the role of estrogens as pro- or antiinflammatory players in immune-inflammatory responses. In particular, their role in Alzheimer's disease (AD), an example of immune-inflammatory disease, is discussed briefly. AD is a progressive neurodegenerative disease, which in Western societies accounts for the majority of cases of clinical senile dementia. However, sexual dimorphism of diseases may also depend on factors independent of sex hormones (i.e., a gender effect), as demonstrated by our data on differential longevity in females and males. In fact, differences in mortality between men and women are not only a question of sex that refers to biological differences, but rather a question of "socially constructed sex," a question of gender (i.e., the characteristics that a society or culture delineates as masculine or feminine). In gender medicine, we conclude that it is important to consider the role played both by hormones, customs, and educational levels regarding the different propensity of males and females to fall ill. So, in programming antiaging strategies, we have also to take these aspects into account.

  14. Epidemiology of neurodegenerative diseases in sub-Saharan Africa: a systematic review

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background Sub-Saharan African (SSA) countries are experiencing rapid transitions with increased life expectancy. As a result the burden of age-related conditions such as neurodegenerative diseases might be increasing. We conducted a systematic review of published studies on common neurodegenerative diseases, and HIV-related neurocognitive impairment in SSA, in order to identify research gaps and inform prevention and control solutions. Methods We searched MEDLINE via PubMed, ‘Banque de Données de Santé Publique’ and the database of the ‘Institut d’Epidemiologie Neurologique et de Neurologie Tropicale’ from inception to February 2013 for published original studies from SSA on neurodegenerative diseases and HIV-related neurocognitive impairment. Screening and data extraction were conducted by two investigators. Bibliographies and citations of eligible studies were investigated. Results In all 144 publications reporting on dementia (n = 49 publications, mainly Alzheimer disease), Parkinsonism (PD, n = 20), HIV-related neurocognitive impairment (n = 47), Huntington disease (HD, n = 19), amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS, n = 15), cerebellar degeneration (n = 4) and Lewy body dementia (n = 1). Of these studies, largely based on prevalent cases from retrospective data on urban populations, half originated from Nigeria and South Africa. The prevalence of dementia (Alzheimer disease) varied between <1% and 10.1% (0.7% and 5.6%) in population-based studies and from <1% to 47.8% in hospital-based studies. Incidence of dementia (Alzheimer disease) ranged from 8.7 to 21.8/1000/year (9.5 to 11.1), and major risk factors were advanced age and female sex. HIV-related neurocognitive impairment’s prevalence (all from hospital-based studies) ranged from <1% to 80%. Population-based prevalence of PD and ALS varied from 10 to 235/100,000, and from 5 to 15/100,000 respectively while that for Huntington disease was 3.5/100,000. Equivalent

  15. Differential diagnosis of neurodegenerative diseases using structural MRI data.

    PubMed

    Koikkalainen, Juha; Rhodius-Meester, Hanneke; Tolonen, Antti; Barkhof, Frederik; Tijms, Betty; Lemstra, Afina W; Tong, Tong; Guerrero, Ricardo; Schuh, Andreas; Ledig, Christian; Rueckert, Daniel; Soininen, Hilkka; Remes, Anne M; Waldemar, Gunhild; Hasselbalch, Steen; Mecocci, Patrizia; van der Flier, Wiesje; Lötjönen, Jyrki

    2016-01-01

    Different neurodegenerative diseases can cause memory disorders and other cognitive impairments. The early detection and the stratification of patients according to the underlying disease are essential for an efficient approach to this healthcare challenge. This emphasizes the importance of differential diagnostics. Most studies compare patients and controls, or Alzheimer's disease with one other type of dementia. Such a bilateral comparison does not resemble clinical practice, where a clinician is faced with a number of different possible types of dementia. Here we studied which features in structural magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans could best distinguish four types of dementia, Alzheimer's disease, frontotemporal dementia, vascular dementia, and dementia with Lewy bodies, and control subjects. We extracted an extensive set of features quantifying volumetric and morphometric characteristics from T1 images, and vascular characteristics from FLAIR images. Classification was performed using a multi-class classifier based on Disease State Index methodology. The classifier provided continuous probability indices for each disease to support clinical decision making. A dataset of 504 individuals was used for evaluation. The cross-validated classification accuracy was 70.6% and balanced accuracy was 69.1% for the five disease groups using only automatically determined MRI features. Vascular dementia patients could be detected with high sensitivity (96%) using features from FLAIR images. Controls (sensitivity 82%) and Alzheimer's disease patients (sensitivity 74%) could be accurately classified using T1-based features, whereas the most difficult group was the dementia with Lewy bodies (sensitivity 32%). These results were notable better than the classification accuracies obtained with visual MRI ratings (accuracy 44.6%, balanced accuracy 51.6%). Different quantification methods provided complementary information, and consequently, the best results were obtained by

  16. Insights into the evolutionary features of human neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Panda, Arup; Begum, Tina; Ghosh, Tapash Chandra

    2012-01-01

    Comparative analyses between human disease and non-disease genes are of great interest in understanding human disease gene evolution. However, the progression of neurodegenerative diseases (NDD) involving amyloid formation in specific brain regions is still unknown. Therefore, in this study, we mainly focused our analysis on the evolutionary features of human NDD genes with respect to non-disease genes. Here, we observed that human NDD genes are evolutionarily conserved relative to non-disease genes. To elucidate the conserved nature of NDD genes, we incorporated the evolutionary attributes like gene expression level, number of regulatory miRNAs, protein connectivity, intrinsic disorder content and relative aggregation propensity in our analysis. Our studies demonstrate that NDD genes have higher gene expression levels in favor of their lower evolutionary rates. Additionally, we observed that NDD genes have higher number of different regulatory miRNAs target sites and also have higher interaction partners than the non-disease genes. Moreover, miRNA targeted genes are known to have higher disorder content. In contrast, our analysis exclusively established that NDD genes have lower disorder content. In favor of our analysis, we found that NDD gene encoded proteins are enriched with multi interface hubs (party hubs) with lower disorder contents. Since, proteins with higher disorder content need to adapt special structure to reduce their aggregation propensity, NDD proteins found to have elevated relative aggregation propensity (RAP) in support of their lower disorder content. Finally, our categorical regression analysis confirmed the underlined relative dominance of protein connectivity, 3'UTR length, RAP, nature of hubs (singlish/multi interface) and disorder content for such evolutionary rates variation between human NDD genes and non-disease genes.

  17. Differential diagnosis of neurodegenerative diseases using structural MRI data

    PubMed Central

    Koikkalainen, Juha; Rhodius-Meester, Hanneke; Tolonen, Antti; Barkhof, Frederik; Tijms, Betty; Lemstra, Afina W.; Tong, Tong; Guerrero, Ricardo; Schuh, Andreas; Ledig, Christian; Rueckert, Daniel; Soininen, Hilkka; Remes, Anne M.; Waldemar, Gunhild; Hasselbalch, Steen; Mecocci, Patrizia; van der Flier, Wiesje; Lötjönen, Jyrki

    2016-01-01

    Different neurodegenerative diseases can cause memory disorders and other cognitive impairments. The early detection and the stratification of patients according to the underlying disease are essential for an efficient approach to this healthcare challenge. This emphasizes the importance of differential diagnostics. Most studies compare patients and controls, or Alzheimer's disease with one other type of dementia. Such a bilateral comparison does not resemble clinical practice, where a clinician is faced with a number of different possible types of dementia. Here we studied which features in structural magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans could best distinguish four types of dementia, Alzheimer's disease, frontotemporal dementia, vascular dementia, and dementia with Lewy bodies, and control subjects. We extracted an extensive set of features quantifying volumetric and morphometric characteristics from T1 images, and vascular characteristics from FLAIR images. Classification was performed using a multi-class classifier based on Disease State Index methodology. The classifier provided continuous probability indices for each disease to support clinical decision making. A dataset of 504 individuals was used for evaluation. The cross-validated classification accuracy was 70.6% and balanced accuracy was 69.1% for the five disease groups using only automatically determined MRI features. Vascular dementia patients could be detected with high sensitivity (96%) using features from FLAIR images. Controls (sensitivity 82%) and Alzheimer's disease patients (sensitivity 74%) could be accurately classified using T1-based features, whereas the most difficult group was the dementia with Lewy bodies (sensitivity 32%). These results were notable better than the classification accuracies obtained with visual MRI ratings (accuracy 44.6%, balanced accuracy 51.6%). Different quantification methods provided complementary information, and consequently, the best results were obtained by

  18. Understanding complexity in neurodegenerative diseases: in silico reconstruction of emergence

    PubMed Central

    Kolodkin, Alexey; Simeonidis, Evangelos; Balling, Rudi; Westerhoff, Hans V.

    2012-01-01

    Healthy functioning is an emergent property of the network of interacting biomolecules that comprise an organism. It follows that disease (a network shift that causes malfunction) is also an emergent property, emerging from a perturbation of the network. On the one hand, the biomolecular network of every individual is unique and this is evident when similar disease-producing agents cause different individual pathologies. Consequently, a personalized model and approach for every patient may be required for therapies to become effective across mankind. On the other hand, diverse combinations of internal and external perturbation factors may cause a similar shift in network functioning. We offer this as an explanation for the multi-factorial nature of most diseases: they are “systems biology diseases,” or “network diseases.” Here we use neurodegenerative diseases, like Parkinson's disease (PD), as an example to show that due to the inherent complexity of these networks, it is difficult to understand multi-factorial diseases with simply our “naked brain.” When describing interactions between biomolecules through mathematical equations and integrating those equations into a mathematical model, we try to reconstruct the emergent properties of the system in silico. The reconstruction of emergence from interactions between huge numbers of macromolecules is one of the aims of systems biology. Systems biology approaches enable us to break through the limitation of the human brain to perceive the extraordinarily large number of interactions, but this also means that we delegate the understanding of reality to the computer. We no longer recognize all those essences in the system's design crucial for important physiological behavior (the so-called “design principles” of the system). In this paper we review evidence that by using more abstract approaches and by experimenting in silico, one may still be able to discover and understand the design principles that

  19. Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells for Disease Modeling and Drug Discovery in Neurodegenerative Diseases.

    PubMed

    Cao, Lei; Tan, Lan; Jiang, Teng; Zhu, Xi-Chen; Yu, Jin-Tai

    2015-08-01

    Although most neurodegenerative diseases have been closely related to aberrant accumulation of aggregation-prone proteins in neurons, understanding their pathogenesis remains incomplete, and there is no treatment to delay the onset or slow the progression of many neurodegenerative diseases. The availability of induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) in recapitulating the phenotypes of several late-onset neurodegenerative diseases marks the new era in in vitro modeling. The iPSC collection represents a unique and well-characterized resource to elucidate disease mechanisms in these diseases and provides a novel human stem cell platform for screening new candidate therapeutics. Modeling human diseases using iPSCs has created novel opportunities for both mechanistic studies as well as for the discovery of new disease therapies. In this review, we introduce iPSC-based disease modeling in neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, Huntington's disease, and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. In addition, we discuss the implementation of iPSCs in drug discovery associated with some new techniques.

  20. Hypoxia-Inducible Histone Lysine Demethylases: Impact on the Aging Process and Age-Related Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Salminen, Antero; Kaarniranta, Kai; Kauppinen, Anu

    2016-01-01

    Hypoxia is an environmental stress at high altitude and underground conditions but it is also present in many chronic age-related diseases, where blood flow into tissues is impaired. The oxygen-sensing system stimulates gene expression protecting tissues against hypoxic insults. Hypoxia stabilizes the expression of hypoxia-inducible transcription factor-1α (HIF-1α), which controls the expression of hundreds of survival genes related to e.g. enhanced energy metabolism and autophagy. Moreover, many stress-related signaling mechanisms, such as oxidative stress and energy metabolic disturbances, as well as the signaling cascades via ceramide, mTOR, NF-κB, and TGF-β pathways, can also induce the expression of HIF-1α protein to facilitate cell survival in normoxia. Hypoxia is linked to prominent epigenetic changes in chromatin landscape. Screening studies have indicated that the stabilization of HIF-1α increases the expression of distinct histone lysine demethylases (KDM). HIF-1α stimulates the expression of KDM3A, KDM4B, KDM4C, and KDM6B, which enhance gene transcription by demethylating H3K9 and H3K27 sites (repressive epigenetic marks). In addition, HIF-1α induces the expression of KDM2B and KDM5B, which repress transcription by demethylating H3K4me2,3 sites (activating marks). Hypoxia-inducible KDMs support locally the gene transcription induced by HIF-1α, although they can also control genome-wide chromatin landscape, especially KDMs which demethylate H3K9 and H3K27 sites. These epigenetic marks have important role in the control of heterochromatin segments and 3D folding of chromosomes, as well as the genetic loci regulating cell type commitment, proliferation, and cellular senescence, e.g. the INK4 box. A chronic stimulation of HIF-1α can provoke tissue fibrosis and cellular senescence, which both are increasingly present with aging and age-related diseases. We will review the regulation of HIF-1α-dependent induction of KDMs and clarify their role in

  1. ROS, Cell Senescence, and Novel Molecular Mechanisms in Aging and Age-Related Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Davalli, Pierpaola; Mitic, Tijana; Caporali, Andrea; Lauriola, Angela; D'Arca, Domenico

    2016-01-01

    The aging process worsens the human body functions at multiple levels, thus causing its gradual decrease to resist stress, damage, and disease. Besides changes in gene expression and metabolic control, the aging rate has been associated with the production of high levels of Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS) and/or Reactive Nitrosative Species (RNS). Specific increases of ROS level have been demonstrated as potentially critical for induction and maintenance of cell senescence process. Causal connection between ROS, aging, age-related pathologies, and cell senescence is studied intensely. Senescent cells have been proposed as a target for interventions to delay the aging and its related diseases or to improve the diseases treatment. Therapeutic interventions towards senescent cells might allow restoring the health and curing the diseases that share basal processes, rather than curing each disease in separate and symptomatic way. Here, we review observations on ROS ability of inducing cell senescence through novel mechanisms that underpin aging processes. Particular emphasis is addressed to the novel mechanisms of ROS involvement in epigenetic regulation of cell senescence and aging, with the aim to individuate specific pathways, which might promote healthy lifespan and improve aging. PMID:27247702

  2. The involvement of microRNAs in neurodegenerative diseases

    PubMed Central

    Maciotta, Simona; Meregalli, Mirella; Torrente, Yvan

    2013-01-01

    Neurodegenerative diseases (NDDs) originate from a loss of neurons in the central nervous system and are severely debilitating. The incidence of NDDs increases with age, and they are expected to become more common due to extended life expectancy. Because no cure is available, these diseases have become a major challenge in neurobiology. The increasing relevance of microRNAs (miRNAs) in biology has prompted investigation into their possible involvement in neurodegeneration in order to identify new therapeutic targets. The idea of using miRNAs as therapeutic targets is not far from realization, but important issues need to be addressed before moving into the clinics. Here, we review what is known about the involvement of miRNAs in the pathogenesis of NDDs. We also report the miRNA expression levels in peripheral tissues of patients affected by NDDs in order to evaluate their application as biomarkers of disease. Finally, discrepancies, innovations, and the effectiveness of collected data will be elucidated and discussed. PMID:24391543

  3. TREM2 in CNS homeostasis and neurodegenerative disease.

    PubMed

    Painter, Meghan M; Atagi, Yuka; Liu, Chia-Chen; Rademakers, Rosa; Xu, Huaxi; Fryer, John D; Bu, Guojun

    2015-09-04

    Myeloid-lineage cells accomplish a myriad of homeostatic tasks including the recognition of pathogens, regulation of the inflammatory milieu, and mediation of tissue repair and regeneration. The innate immune receptor and its adaptor protein—triggering receptor expressed on myeloid cells 2 (TREM2) and DNAX-activating protein of 12 kDa (DAP12)—possess the ability to modulate critical cellular functions via crosstalk with diverse signaling pathways. As such, mutations in TREM2 and DAP12 have been found to be associated with a range of disease phenotypes. In particular, mutations in TREM2 increase the risk for Alzheimer's disease and other neurodegenerative disorders. The leading hypothesis is that microglia, the resident immune cells of the central nervous system, are the major myeloid cells affected by dysregulated TREM2-DAP12 function. Here, we review how impaired signaling by the TREM2-DAP12 pathway leads to altered immune responses in phagocytosis, cytokine production, and microglial proliferation and survival, thus contributing to disease pathogenesis.

  4. The involvement of microRNAs in neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Maciotta, Simona; Meregalli, Mirella; Torrente, Yvan

    2013-12-19

    Neurodegenerative diseases (NDDs) originate from a loss of neurons in the central nervous system and are severely debilitating. The incidence of NDDs increases with age, and they are expected to become more common due to extended life expectancy. Because no cure is available, these diseases have become a major challenge in neurobiology. The increasing relevance of microRNAs (miRNAs) in biology has prompted investigation into their possible involvement in neurodegeneration in order to identify new therapeutic targets. The idea of using miRNAs as therapeutic targets is not far from realization, but important issues need to be addressed before moving into the clinics. Here, we review what is known about the involvement of miRNAs in the pathogenesis of NDDs. We also report the miRNA expression levels in peripheral tissues of patients affected by NDDs in order to evaluate their application as biomarkers of disease. Finally, discrepancies, innovations, and the effectiveness of collected data will be elucidated and discussed.

  5. Principles and practice of hormetic treatment of aging and age-related diseases.

    PubMed

    Rattan, Suresh Is

    2008-02-01

    Aging is characterized by stochastic accumulation of molecular damage, progressive failure of maintenance and repair, and consequent onset of age-related diseases. Applying hormesis in aging research and therapy is based on the principle of stimulation of maintenance and repair pathways by repeated exposure to mild stress. Studies on the beneficial biological effects of repeated mild heat shock on human cells in culture, and other studies on the anti-aging and life-prolonging effects of proxidants, hypergravity, irradiation and ethanol on cells and organisms suggest that hormesis as an antiaging and gerontomodulatory approach has a promising future. Its clinical applications include prevention and treatment of diabetes, cataract, osteoporosis, dementia and some cancers.

  6. Association between environmental exposure to pesticides and neurodegenerative diseases

    SciTech Connect

    Parron, Tesifon; Requena, Mar; Hernandez, Antonio F.; Alarcon, Raquel

    2011-11-15

    Preliminary studies have shown associations between chronic pesticide exposure in occupational settings and neurological disorders. However, data on the effects of long-term non-occupational exposures are too sparse to allow any conclusions. This study examines the influence of environmental pesticide exposure on a number of neuropsychiatric conditions and discusses their underlying pathologic mechanisms. An ecological study was conducted using averaged prevalence rates of Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, multiple sclerosis, cerebral degeneration, polyneuropathies, affective psychosis and suicide attempts in selected Andalusian health districts categorized into areas of high and low environmental pesticide exposure based on the number of hectares devoted to intensive agriculture and pesticide sales per capita. A total of 17,429 cases were collected from computerized hospital records (minimum dataset) between 1998 and 2005. Prevalence rates and the risk of having Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, multiple sclerosis and suicide were significantly higher in districts with greater pesticide use as compared to those with lower pesticide use. The multivariate analyses showed that the population living in areas with high pesticide use had an increased risk for Alzheimer's disease and suicide attempts and that males living in these areas had increased risks for polyneuropathies, affective disorders and suicide attempts. In conclusion, this study supports and extends previous findings and provides an indication that environmental exposure to pesticides may affect the human health by increasing the incidence of certain neurological disorders at the level of the general population. -- Highlights: Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Environmental exposure to pesticides and neurodegenerative-psychiatric disorders. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Increased risk for Alzheimer's disease and suicide attempts in high exposure areas. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Males from

  7. Concise review: toward stem cell-based therapies for retinal neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Bull, Natalie D; Martin, Keith R

    2011-08-01

    Loss of sight due to irreversible retinal neurodegeneration imposes a significant disease burden on both patients and society. Glaucoma and age-related macular degeneration are the commonest neurodegenerative blinding diseases in the developed world, and both are becoming increasingly prevalent as populations age. Our heavy reliance on our sense of sight means that visual loss often severely restricts day-to-day life, making it difficult to function without additional support. Visual impairment also limits employment possibilities, adding to the economic burden. Current therapies for many degenerative retinopathies are limited in their efficacy, often treating the effects of disease rather than the underlying causes. Consequently, the development of novel adjunctive neuroprotective and neuroregenerative treatments are important goals. Evidence from animal models suggests that stem cells could be useful as part of novel new treatment strategies for eye disease. The accessibility of the eye and extensive repertoire of available surgical techniques may facilitate the translation of stem cell-based therapies, for example, via transplantation, to the retina more rapidly than to other parts of the central nervous system. This concise review will examine how cell therapies are being applied experimentally for neuroregenerative and neuroprotective treatment of currently incurable degenerative retinal diseases. Furthermore, recent progress toward clinical translation of such therapies will be highlighted.

  8. Cytoskeletal Pathologies of Age-Related Diseases between Elderly Sri Lankan (Colombo) and Indian (Bangalore) Brain Samples.

    PubMed

    Wijesinghe, Printha; Shankar, S K; Chickabasaviah, Yasha T; Gorrie, Catherine; Amaratunga, Dhammika; Hulathduwa, Sanjayah; Kumara, K Sunil; Samarasinghe, Kamani; Suh, Yoo Hun; Steinbusch, H W; De Silva, K Ranil D

    2016-01-01

    Within South Asia, Sri Lanka represents fastest aging with 13% of the population was aged over 60's in 2011, whereas in India it was 8%. Majority of the Sri Lankan population based genetic studies have confirmed their origin on Indian mainland. As there were inadequate data on aging cytoskeletal pathologies of these two nations with their close genetic affiliations, we performed a comparison on their elderly. Autopsy brain samples of 50 individuals from Colombo, Sri Lanka (mean age 72.1 yrs ± 7.8, mean ± S.D.) and 42 individuals from Bangalore, India (mean age 65.9 yrs ± 9.3) were screened for neurodegenerative pathologies using immunohistochemical techniques. A total of 79 cases with incomplete clinical history (Colombo- 47 and Bangalore- 32) were subjected to statistical analysis and 13 cases, clinically diagnosed with dementia and/or Parkinsonism disorders were excluded. As per National Institute on Aging- Alzheimer's Association guidelines, between Colombo and Bangalore samples, Alzheimer's disease neuropathologic change for intermediate/ high level was 4.25% vs. 3.12% and low level was 19.15% vs. 15.62% respectively. Pathologies associated with Parkinsonism including brainstem predominant Lewy bodies- 6.4% and probable progressive supra nuclear palsy- 2.13% were found solely in Colombo samples. Alzheimer related pathologies were not different among elders, however, in Colombo males, neurofibrillary tangle grade was significantly higher in the region of hippocampus (odds ratio = 1.46, 95% confidence interval = 0.07-0.7) and at risk in midbrain substantia nigra (p = 0.075). Other age-related pathologies including spongiform changes (p < 0.05) and hippocampus cell loss in dentate gyrus region (p < 0.05) were also identified prominently in Colombo samples. Taken together, aging cytoskeletal pathologies are comparatively higher in elderly Sri Lankans and this might be due to their genetic, dietary and/ or environmental variations.

  9. Cytoskeletal Pathologies of Age-Related Diseases between Elderly Sri Lankan (Colombo) and Indian (Bangalore) Brain Samples.

    PubMed

    Wijesinghe, Printha; Shankar, S K; Chickabasaviah, Yasha T; Gorrie, Catherine; Amaratunga, Dhammika; Hulathduwa, Sanjayah; Kumara, K Sunil; Samarasinghe, Kamani; Suh, Yoo Hun; Steinbusch, H W; De Silva, K Ranil D

    2016-01-01

    Within South Asia, Sri Lanka represents fastest aging with 13% of the population was aged over 60's in 2011, whereas in India it was 8%. Majority of the Sri Lankan population based genetic studies have confirmed their origin on Indian mainland. As there were inadequate data on aging cytoskeletal pathologies of these two nations with their close genetic affiliations, we performed a comparison on their elderly. Autopsy brain samples of 50 individuals from Colombo, Sri Lanka (mean age 72.1 yrs ± 7.8, mean ± S.D.) and 42 individuals from Bangalore, India (mean age 65.9 yrs ± 9.3) were screened for neurodegenerative pathologies using immunohistochemical techniques. A total of 79 cases with incomplete clinical history (Colombo- 47 and Bangalore- 32) were subjected to statistical analysis and 13 cases, clinically diagnosed with dementia and/or Parkinsonism disorders were excluded. As per National Institute on Aging- Alzheimer's Association guidelines, between Colombo and Bangalore samples, Alzheimer's disease neuropathologic change for intermediate/ high level was 4.25% vs. 3.12% and low level was 19.15% vs. 15.62% respectively. Pathologies associated with Parkinsonism including brainstem predominant Lewy bodies- 6.4% and probable progressive supra nuclear palsy- 2.13% were found solely in Colombo samples. Alzheimer related pathologies were not different among elders, however, in Colombo males, neurofibrillary tangle grade was significantly higher in the region of hippocampus (odds ratio = 1.46, 95% confidence interval = 0.07-0.7) and at risk in midbrain substantia nigra (p = 0.075). Other age-related pathologies including spongiform changes (p < 0.05) and hippocampus cell loss in dentate gyrus region (p < 0.05) were also identified prominently in Colombo samples. Taken together, aging cytoskeletal pathologies are comparatively higher in elderly Sri Lankans and this might be due to their genetic, dietary and/ or environmental variations. PMID:26906356

  10. [Effects of resveratrol-induced cellular autophagy in control of neurodegenerative diseases].

    PubMed

    Dong, Wen; Wang, Rong

    2016-01-01

    Cellular autophagy is a major degradative pathway for clearance of aggregate-prone proteins and damaged organelles. It plays an important role in regulating cellular homeostasis, cell growth and development, and disease development. Dysfunctional autophagy contributes to the pathology of various neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease and Huntington's disease, in which specific pathological protein accumulation occurs. A growing body of evidence suggests that resveratrol plays a significantly role in the regulation of autophagy and clearance of pathological proteins. Resveratrol is a potential drug for neurodegenerative diseases therapy. This review focuses on the effects of resveratrol on cellular autophagy and clinical application in the control of neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:27405156

  11. Molecular Pathological Classification of Neurodegenerative Diseases: Turning towards Precision Medicine

    PubMed Central

    Kovacs, Gabor G.

    2016-01-01

    Neurodegenerative diseases (NDDs) are characterized by selective dysfunction and loss of neurons associated with pathologically altered proteins that deposit in the human brain but also in peripheral organs. These proteins and their biochemical modifications can be potentially targeted for therapy or used as biomarkers. Despite a plethora of modifications demonstrated for different neurodegeneration-related proteins, such as amyloid-β, prion protein, tau, α-synuclein, TAR DNA-binding protein 43 (TDP-43), or fused in sarcoma protein (FUS), molecular classification of NDDs relies on detailed morphological evaluation of protein deposits, their distribution in the brain, and their correlation to clinical symptoms together with specific genetic alterations. A further facet of the neuropathology-based classification is the fact that many protein deposits show a hierarchical involvement of brain regions. This has been shown for Alzheimer and Parkinson disease and some forms of tauopathies and TDP-43 proteinopathies. The present paper aims to summarize current molecular classification of NDDs, focusing on the most relevant biochemical and morphological aspects. Since the combination of proteinopathies is frequent, definition of novel clusters of patients with NDDs needs to be considered in the era of precision medicine. Optimally, neuropathological categorizing of NDDs should be translated into in vivo detectable biomarkers to support better prediction of prognosis and stratification of patients for therapy trials. PMID:26848654

  12. Elusive roles for reactive astrocytes in neurodegenerative diseases

    PubMed Central

    Ben Haim, Lucile; Carrillo-de Sauvage, Maria-Angeles; Ceyzériat, Kelly; Escartin, Carole

    2015-01-01

    Astrocytes play crucial roles in the brain and are involved in the neuroinflammatory response. They become reactive in response to virtually all pathological situations in the brain such as axotomy, ischemia, infection, and neurodegenerative diseases (ND). Astrocyte reactivity was originally characterized by morphological changes (hypertrophy, remodeling of processes) and the overexpression of the intermediate filament glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP). However, it is unclear how the normal supportive functions of astrocytes are altered by their reactive state. In ND, in which neuronal dysfunction and astrocyte reactivity take place over several years or decades, the issue is even more complex and highly debated, with several conflicting reports published recently. In this review, we discuss studies addressing the contribution of reactive astrocytes to ND. We describe the molecular triggers leading to astrocyte reactivity during ND, examine how some key astrocyte functions may be enhanced or altered during the disease process, and discuss how astrocyte reactivity may globally affect ND progression. Finally we will consider the anticipated developments in this important field. With this review, we aim to show that the detailed study of reactive astrocytes may open new perspectives for ND. PMID:26283915

  13. [Early experience, stressful dysregulation of the hormonal axis and age-related vulnerability to neurodegenerative processus: a longitudinal study in the rat].

    PubMed

    Mayo, W; Vallée, V; Le Moal, M

    2001-04-01

    The deleterious effects of particular environmental situations have been suspected to augment the repercussions of cerebral injuries leading to increased vulnerability during ageing. The relationship between the hormones of the hypothalamo-pituitary-adrenal axis, mainly glucocorticosteroids, and cerebral structures like the hippocampus has been the subject of intense investigation in the recent years. Data suggest that long-term elevated blood levels of these hormones can induce neuronal alterations leading to cognitive dysfunction. This hypothesis has been tested with relevant animal models of normal/abnormal ageing. The models are based on the existence of considerable inter-individual differences in the degree of age-related cognitive impairments observed in rodents. Results show that long-term glucocorticosteroid exposure induces cerebral changes related to the action of these hormones on their central receptors. Experimental data are in accordance with clinical investigations suggesting that hormonal changes, and chronic life events, could be considered as a predictive factor of future cognitive dysfunction. PMID:11398011

  14. Age-related macular degeneration and coronary heart disease: evaluation of genetic and environmental associations.

    PubMed

    Keilhauer, Claudia N; Fritsche, Lars G; Guthoff, Rainer; Haubitz, Imme; Weber, Bernhard H

    2013-02-01

    An association between coronary heart disease (CHD) and age-related macular degeneration (AMD) has long been postulated but results from epidemiological case-control studies, and genetic analyses have been ambiguous. In this study we illuminate the association between AMD and CHD with respect to genetic and environmental risk factors, age of disease onset and AMD subgroups. AMD patients (n = 1036) and age-matched control subjects (n = 412) between 68 and 95 years of age were included in the case-control study. A medical history of CHD, cerebral stroke and arterial hypertension was determined for each individual. The assessment of interacting factors included the current use of systemic medications and smoking habits. Analysis of AMD associated genetic variants included frequent polymorphisms at the complement factor H (CFH, MIM 134370) gene (rs1061170 [p.Y402H], rs800292 [p.I62V]), the complement factor H-related 3 (CFHR3, MIM 605336)/complement factor H-related 1 (CFHR1, MIM 134371) locus (rs6677604; proxy for ΔCFHR3/CFHR1; r(2) = 0.97) as well as the age-related maculopathy susceptibility 2 (ARMS2, MIM 611313) gene (rs10490924 [p.A69S]). Logistic regression identified a significant positive association of AMD with AMD-risk variants in CFH, ARMS2, and smoking ≥ 20 packs/year. A history of CHD and the current use of antihyperuricemic agents were inversely associated with the disease. Significantly fewer patients with rs6677604 nonrisk genotype A/A regularly used statins. ARMS2:p.A69S risk variant was significantly associated with exsudative AMD. AMD patients with risk variants at rs1061170 (CFH:p.Y402H) and ARMS2 and smokers (≥20 packs/year) were significantly earlier affected by AMD than those carrying the non-risk variants at each locus. Our data support three major conclusions. First, the age of AMD onset is significantly influenced by genetic and environmental risk factors. Second, in support of previous reports we also show that the ARMS2 rs10490924:T

  15. Autobiographical memory and autonoetic consciousness: triple dissociation in neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Piolino, Pascale; Desgranges, Béatrice; Belliard, Serge; Matuszewski, Vanessa; Lalevée, Catherine; De la Sayette, Vincent; Eustache, Francis

    2003-10-01

    Few studies have investigated autobiographical amnesia in neurodegenerative diseases and yet these pathologies are particularly relevant when addressing the issue of theories of long-term memory consolidation. According to the standard model, the medial temporal lobe (MTL) is involved in the storage and retrieval of episodic and semantic memories during a limited period of years. An alternative model, the multiple trace theory (MTT), suggests that the capacity of the MTL to recollect episodic memories is of a more permanent nature. In order to test these models, we studied three groups of patients with a neurodegenerative disease predominantly affecting different cerebral structures namely the MTL (13 patients in the early stages of Alzheimer's disease) and the neocortex involving either the anterior temporal lobe (10 patients with semantic dementia) or the frontal lobe (15 patients with the frontal variant of frontotemporal dementia, fv-FTD). We compared these groups of patients with control subjects using an original and reliable autobiographical memory task designed specially to assess strictly episodic memory over the entire lifespan. This task, developed on the basis of the most up-to-date definition of episodic memory, takes into account the ability to mentally travel back in time and re-experience the source of acquisition (remembering, i.e. autonoetic consciousness) via the remember/know paradigm. All three groups of patients produced strongly contrasting profiles of autobiographical amnesia (regardless of the nature of the memories), which also differed markedly from that of the control group: temporally graded memory loss in Alzheimer's disease, showing that remote memories are better preserved than recent ones; memory loss with a reversed gradient in semantic dementia; and memory loss without any clear gradient in fv-FTD. Most strictly episodic memories (i.e. unique, specific in time and space, and detailed) were impaired, whatever the time interval

  16. Oxidative Stress in Neurodegenerative Diseases: Mechanisms and Therapeutic Perspectives

    PubMed Central

    Melo, Ailton; Monteiro, Larissa; Lima, Rute M. F.; de Oliveira, Diêgo M.; de Cerqueira, Martins D.; El-Bachá, Ramon S.

    2011-01-01

    The incidence and prevalence of neurodegenerative diseases (ND) increase with life expectancy. This paper reviews the role of oxidative stress (OS) in ND and pharmacological attempts to fight against reactive oxygen species (ROS)-induced neurodegeneration. Several mechanisms involved in ROS generation in neurodegeneration have been proposed. Recent articles about molecular pathways involved in ROS generation were reviewed. The progress in the development of neuroprotective therapies has been hampered because it is difficult to define targets for treatment and determine what should be considered as neuroprotective. Therefore, the attention was focused on researches about pharmacological targets that could protect neurons against OS. Since it is necessary to look for genes as the ultimate controllers of all biological processes, this paper also tried to identify gerontogenes involved in OS and neurodegeneration. Since neurons depend on glial cells to survive, recent articles about the functioning of these cells in aging and ND were also reviewed. Finally, clinical trials testing potential neuroprotective agents were critically reviewed. Although several potential drugs have been screened in in vitro and in vivo models of ND, these results were not translated in benefit of patients, and disappointing results were obtained in the majority of clinical trials. PMID:22191013

  17. Cognitive Reserve Modifies Age-Related Alterations in CSF Biomarkers of Alzheimer's Disease

    PubMed Central

    Almeida, Rodrigo P.; Schultz, Stephanie A.; Austin, Benjamin P.; Boots, Elizabeth A.; Dowling, N. Maritza; Gleason, Carey E.; Bendlin, Barbara B.; Sager, Mark; Hermann, Bruce P.; Zetterberg, Henrik; Carlsson, Cindy; Johnson, Sterling; Asthana, Sanjay; Okonkwo, Ozioma C.

    2015-01-01

    Importance Although advancing age is the strongest risk factor for the development of symptomatic Alzheimer's disease (AD), recent studies have shown that there are individual differences in susceptibility to age-related alterations in the biomarkers of AD pathophysiology. Objective In this study, we investigated whether cognitive reserve modifies the adverse influence of age on key cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) biomarkers of AD. Design, Setting, and Participants Cross-sectional cohort of 268 individuals (211 cognitively normal and 57 cognitively impaired) from the Wisconsin Registry for Alzheimer's Prevention and the Wisconsin Alzheimer's Disease Research Center participated in this study. They underwent lumbar puncture for collection of CSF samples, from which amyloid-β 42 (Aβ42), total tau (t-tau), and phosphorylated tau (p-tau) were immunoassayed. Additionally, we computed t-tau/Aβ42 and p-tau/Aβ42 ratios. Cognitive reserve was indexed by years of education, with ≥16 years taken to confer high reserve. Covariate-adjusted regression analyses were used to test whether the effect of age on CSF biomarkers was modified by cognitive reserve. Main outcome measures CSF levels of Aβ42, t-tau, p-tau, t-tau/Aβ42, and p-tau/Aβ42. Results There were significant age*cognitive reserve interactions for CSF t-tau (p=.019), p-tau (p=.009), t-tau/Aβ42 (p=.021), and p-tau/Aβ42 (p=.004). Specifically, with advancing age, individuals with high cognitive reserve exhibited attenuated adverse alterations in these CSF biomarkers compared with individuals with low cognitive reserve. This attenuation of age effects by cognitive reserve tended to be more pronounced in the cognitively-impaired group compared with the cognitively-normal group. Lastly, there was modest evidence of a dose response relationship such that the effect of age on the biomarkers was progressively attenuated given additional years of schooling. Conclusions and Relevance In a sample comprised of both cognitively

  18. Delivery strategies for treatment of age-related ocular diseases: From a biological understanding to biomaterial solutions.

    PubMed

    Delplace, Vianney; Payne, Samantha; Shoichet, Molly

    2015-12-10

    Age-related ocular diseases, such as age-related macular degeneration (AMD), diabetic retinopathy, and glaucoma, result in life-long functional deficits and enormous global health care costs. As the worldwide population ages, vision loss has become a major concern for both economic and human health reasons. Due to recent research into biomaterials and nanotechnology major advances have been gained in the field of ocular delivery. This review provides a summary and discussion of the most recent strategies employed for the delivery of both drugs and cells to the eye to treat a variety of age-related diseases. It emphasizes the current challenges and limitations to ocular delivery and how the use of innovative materials can overcome these issues and ultimately provide treatment for age-related degeneration and regeneration of lost tissues. This review also provides critical considerations and an outlook for future studies in the field of ophthalmic delivery.

  19. Biological metals and metal-targeting compounds in major neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Barnham, Kevin J; Bush, Ashley I

    2014-10-01

    Multiple abnormalities occur in the homeostasis of essential endogenous brain biometals in age-related neurodegenerative disorders, Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, Huntington's disease and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. As a result, metals both accumulate in microscopic proteinopathies, and can be deficient in cells or cellular compartments. Therefore, bulk measurement of metal content in brain tissue samples reveal only the "tip of the iceberg", with most of the important changes occurring on a microscopic and biochemical level. Each of the major proteins implicated in these disorders interacts with biological transition metals. Tau and the amyloid protein precursor have important roles in normal neuronal iron homeostasis. Changes in metal distribution, cellular deficiencies, or sequestration in proteinopathies all present abnormalities that can be corrected in animal models by small molecules. These biochemical targets are more complex than the simple excess of metals that are targeted by chelators. In this review we illustrate some of the richness in the science that has developed in the study of metals in neurodegeneration, and explore its novel pharmacology.

  20. Elucidation of endemic neurodegenerative diseases--a commentary.

    PubMed

    Nishida, Yuzo

    2003-01-01

    Recent investigations of scrapie, Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD), and chronic wasting disease (CWD) clusters in Iceland, Slovakia and Colorado, respectively, have indicated that the soil in these regions is low in copper and higher in manganese, and it has been well-known that patients of ALS or Parkinson's disease were collectively found in the New Guinea and Papua islands, where the subterranean water (drinking water) contains much Al3+ and Mn2+ ions. Above facts suggest that these neurodegenerative diseases are closely related with the function of a metal ion. We have investigated the chemical functions of the metal ions in detail and established the unique mechanism of the oxygen activation by the transition metal ions such as iron and copper, and pointed out the notable difference in the mechanism among iron, aluminum and manganese ions. Based on these results, it has become apparent that the incorporation of Al(III) or Mn(II) in the cells induces the "iron-overload syndrome", which is mainly due to the difference in an oxygen activation mechanism between the iron ion and Al(III) or the Mn(II) ion. This syndrome highly promotes formation of hydrogen peroxide, and hydrogen peroxide thus produced can be a main factor to cause serious damages to DNA and proteins (oxidative stress), yielding a copper(II)- or manganese(II)-peptide complex and its peroxide adduct, which are the serious agents to induce the structural changes from the normal prion protein (PrP(c)) to abnormal disease-causing isoforms, PrP(Sc), or the formation of PrP 27-30 (abnormal cleavage at site 90 of the prion protein). It seems reasonable to consider that the essential origin for the transmissible spongiform encephalopathies (TSEs) should be the incorporation and accumulation of Al(III) and Mn(II) ions in the cells, and the sudden and explosive increase of scrapie and bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) in the last decade may be partially due to "acid rain", because the acid rain makes Al

  1. Nutraceutical properties of extra-virgin olive oil: a natural remedy for age-related disease?

    PubMed

    Virruso, Claudia; Accardi, Giulia; Colonna-Romano, Giuseppina; Candore, Giuseppina; Vasto, Sonya; Caruso, Calogero

    2014-04-01

    The health benefits of the Mediterranean diet can be largely ascribed to the nutraceutical properties of extra-virgin olive oil (EVOO). Mono-unsaturated fatty acids and various phenolic compounds, such as oleocanthal, oleuropein, hydroxytyrosol, and tyrosol, are the main nutraceutical substances of EVOO. These substances have been suggested to have the ability to modulate aging-associated processes. In experimental models, it has been shown that EVOO with high concentrations of polyphenols has anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant properties. Indeed, it was observed that hydroxytyrosol and oleocanthal inhibit the cyclooxygenases (COX-1 and -2) responsible for prostaglandin production; oleuropein is a radical scavenger that blocks the oxidation of low-density lipoproteins. Due to the relevance of olive oil in the economy of Sicily, our group has been funded to assess the nutraceutical properties of different kinds of olive oil. Indeed, the aim of the study is to evaluate effects of EVOOs, with low and high polyphenols content, on immuno-inflammatory and oxidative stress responses in young and old people. A further objective of our group is to evaluate effects of EVOO, with low and high polyphenol content, on the expression of genes encoding proteins that take part in the insulin/insulin-like growth factor-1 signaling pathway involved in longevity. The results of the study will be useful for producing olive oil enriched in nutraceutical properties that may be likely helpful in the prevention of age-related diseases. PMID:24219356

  2. Molecular links between cellular senescence, longevity and age-related diseases - a systems biology perspective.

    PubMed

    Tacutu, Robi; Budovsky, Arie; Yanai, Hagai; Fraifeld, Vadim E

    2011-12-01

    The role of cellular senescence (CS) in age-related diseases (ARDs) is a quickly emerging topic in aging research. Our comprehensive data mining revealed over 250 genes tightly associated with CS. Using systems biology tools, we found that CS is closely interconnected with aging, longevity and ARDs, either by sharing common genes and regulators or by protein-protein interactions and eventually by common signaling pathways. The most enriched pathways across CS, ARDs and aging-associated conditions (oxidative stress and chronic inflammation) are growth-promoting pathways and the pathways responsible for cell-extracellular matrix interactions and stress response. Of note, the patterns of evolutionary conservation of CS and cancer genes showed a high degree of similarity, suggesting the co-evolution of these two phenomena. Moreover, cancer genes and microRNAs seem to stand at the crossroad between CS and ARDs. Our analysis also provides the basis for new predictions: the genes common to both cancer and other ARD(s) are highly likely candidates to be involved in CS and vice versa. Altogether, this study shows that there are multiple links between CS, aging, longevity and ARDs, suggesting a common molecular basis for all these conditions. Modulating CS may represent a potential pro-longevity and anti-ARDs therapeutic strategy. PMID:22184282

  3. NAD+ metabolism, a therapeutic target for age-related metabolic disease

    PubMed Central

    Auwerx, Johan

    2013-01-01

    Nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD) is a central metabolic cofactor by virtue of its redox capacity, and as such regulates a wealth of metabolic transformations. However, the identification of the longevity protein Sir2, the founding member of the sirtuin protein family, as being NAD+-dependent reignited interest in this metabolite. The sirtuins (SIRT1-7 in mammals) utilize NAD+ to deacetylate proteins in different subcellular compartments with a variety of functions, but with a strong convergence on optimizing mitochondrial function. Since cellular NAD+ levels are limiting for sirtuin activity, boosting its levels is a powerful means to activate sirtuins as a potential therapy for mitochondrial, often age-related, diseases. Indeed, supplying excess precursors, or blocking its utilization by PARP enzymes or CD38/CD157, boosts NAD+ levels, activates sirtuins and promotes healthy aging. Here, we discuss the current state of knowledge of NAD+ metabolism, primarily in relation to sirtuin function. We highlight how NAD+ levels change in diverse physiological conditions, and how this can be employed as a pharmacological strategy. PMID:23742622

  4. Leukocyte telomere length and prevalence of age-related diseases in semisupercentenarians, centenarians and centenarians' offspring.

    PubMed

    Tedone, Enzo; Arosio, Beatrice; Gussago, Cristina; Casati, Martina; Ferri, Evelyn; Ogliari, Giulia; Ronchetti, Francesco; Porta, Alessandra; Massariello, Francesca; Nicolini, Paola; Mari, Daniela

    2014-10-01

    Centenarians and their offspring are increasingly considered a useful model to study and characterize the mechanisms underlying healthy aging and longevity. The aim of this project is to compare the prevalence of age-related diseases and telomere length (TL), a marker of biological age and mortality, across five groups of subjects: semisupercentenarians (SSCENT) (105-109years old), centenarians (CENT) (100-104years old), centenarians' offspring (CO), age- and gender-matched offspring of parents who both died at an age in line with life expectancy (CT) and age- and gender-matched offspring of both non-long-lived parents (NLO). Information was collected on lifestyle, past and current diseases, medical history and medication use. SSCENT displayed a lower prevalence of acute myocardial infarction (p=0.027), angina (p=0.016) and depression (p=0.021) relative to CENT. CO appeared to be healthier compared to CT who, in turn, displayed a lower prevalence of both arrhythmia (p=0.034) and hypertension (p=0.046) than NLO, characterized by the lowest parental longevity. Interestingly, CO and SSCENT exhibited the longest (p<0.001) and the shortest (p<0.001) telomeres respectively while CENT showed no difference in TL compared to the younger CT and NLO. Our results strengthen the hypothesis that the longevity of parents may influence the health status of their offspring. Moreover, our data also suggest that both CENT and their offspring may be characterized by a better TL maintenance which, in turn, may contribute to their longevity and healthy aging. The observation that SSCENT showed considerable shorter telomeres compared to CENT may suggest a progressive impairment of TL maintenance mechanisms over the transition from centenarian to semisupercentenarian age.

  5. Stem cell-based models and therapies for neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Iyer, Shilpa; Alsayegh, Khaled; Abraham, Sheena; Rao, Raj R

    2009-01-01

    Multiple neurodegenerative disorders typically result from irrevocable damage and improper functioning of specialized neuronal cells or populations of neuronal cells. These disorders have the potential to contribute to an already overburdened health care system unless the progression of neurodegeneration can be altered. Progress in understanding neurodegenerative cell biology has been hampered by a lack of predictive and, some would claim, relevant cellular models. Additionally, the research needed to develop new drugs and determine methods for repair or replacement of damaged neurons is severely hampered by the lack of an adequate in vitro human neuron cell-based model. In this context, pluripotent stem cells and neural progenitors and their properties including unlimited proliferation, plasticity to generate other cell types, and a readily available source of cells--pose an excellent alternative to ex vivo primary cultures or established immortalized cell lines in contributing to our understanding of neurodegenerative cell biology and our ability to analyze the therapeutic or cytotoxic effects of chemicals, drugs, and xenobiotics. Many questions that define the underlying "genesis" of the neuronal death in these disorders also remain unanswered, with evidence suggesting a key role for mitochondrial dysfunction. The assessment of stem cells, neural progenitors, and engineered adult cells can provide useful insights into neuronal development and neurodegenerative processes. Finally, the potential for a combination of cell- and gene-based therapeutics for neurodegenerative disorders is also discussed.

  6. P7C3 and an unbiased approach to drug discovery for neurodegenerative diseases

    PubMed Central

    McKnight, Steven L.; Ready, Joseph M.

    2014-01-01

    A novel neuroprotective small molecule was discovered using a target-agnostic in vivo screen in living mice. This aminopropyl carbazole, named P7C3, is orally bioavailable, crosses the blood–brain barrier, and is non-toxic at doses several fold higher than the efficacious dose. The potency and drug-like properties of P7C3 were optimized through a medicinal chemistry campaign, providing analogues for detailed examination. Improved versions, such as (−)-P7C3-S243 and P7C3-A20, displayed neuro-protective properties in rodent models of Parkinson’s disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, traumatic brain injury and age-related cognitive decline. Derivatives appended with immobilizing moieties may reveal the protein targets of the P7C3 class of neuroprotective compounds. Our results indicate that unbiased, in vivo screens might provide starting points for the development of treatments for neurodegenerative diseases as well as tools to study the biology underlying these disorders. PMID:24514864

  7. Neighborhood Deprivation and Risk of Age-Related Eye Diseases: A Follow-up Study in Sweden

    PubMed Central

    Hamano, Tsuyoshi; Li, Xinjun; Tanito, Masaki; Nabika, Toru; Shiwaku, Kuninori; Sundquist, Jan; Sundquist, Kristina

    2016-01-01

    Purpose To examine whether there is an association between neighborhood deprivation and age-related eye diseases, particularly macular degeneration, cataract, diabetes-related eye complications, and glaucoma. Methods The study population comprised a nationwide sample of 2,060,887 men and 2,250,851 women aged 40 years or older living in Sweden who were followed from 1 January 2000 until the first hospitalization/outpatient registration for age-related eye disease during the study period, death, emigration, or the end of the study period on 31 December 2010. Multilevel logistic regression was used to estimate the association between neighborhood deprivation and age-related eye diseases. Results In men, the odds ratio (OR) for age-related eye diseases for those living in high-deprivation neighborhoods compared to those living in low-deprivation neighborhoods remained significant after adjustment for potential confounding factors (macular degeneration, OR 1.08, 95% confidence interval, CI, 1.03–1.12; cataract, OR 1.31, 95% CI 1.26–1.35; diabetes-related eye complications, OR 1.36, 95% CI 1.30–1.43; glaucoma, OR 1.11, 95% CI 1.06–1.15). In women, similar patterns were observed (macular degeneration, OR 1.11, 95% CI 1.07–1.15; cataract, OR 1.36, 95% CI 1.31–1.40; diabetes-related eye complications, OR 1.50, 95% CI 1.42–1.59; glaucoma, OR 1.12, 95% CI 1.08–1.17). Conclusion Our results suggest that neighborhood deprivation is associated with age-related eye diseases in both men and women. These results implicate that individual- as well as neighborhood-level factors are important for preventing age-related eye diseases. PMID:26395658

  8. Brain lipoprotein metabolism and its relation to neurodegenerative disease.

    PubMed

    Danik, M; Champagne, D; Petit-Turcotte, C; Beffert, U; Poirier, J

    1999-01-01

    notion and suggests that the isolated brain possesses its own system to maintain local lipid homeostasis. This is further exemplified by the salvage and recycling of lipids shown to occur following a lesion in order to allow surviving neurons to sprout and reestablish lost synapses. Not much is currently known about lipoprotein metabolism in neurodegenerative diseases, but lipid alterations have been repeatedly reported in Alzheimer brains in which neuronal loss and deafferentation are major features. Although the mechanism underlying the link between the epsilon4 allele of the apolipoprotein E gene and Alzheimer's disease is presently unclear, it may well be postulated that it is related to disturbances in brain lipoprotein metabolism. PMID:11028681

  9. Alzheimer’s disease as homeostatic responses to age-related myelin breakdown

    PubMed Central

    Bartzokis, George

    2011-01-01

    The amyloid hypothesis (AH) of Alzheimer’s disease (AD) posits that the fundamental cause of AD is the accumulation of the peptide amyloid beta (Aβ) in the brain. This hypothesis has been supported by observations that genetic defects in amyloid precursor protein (APP) and presenilin increase Aβ production and cause familial AD (FAD). The AH is widely accepted but does not account for important phenomena including recent failures of clinical trials to impact dementia in humans even after successfully reducing Aβ deposits. Herein, the AH is viewed from the broader overarching perspective of the myelin model of the human brain that focuses on functioning brain circuits and encompasses white matter and myelin in addition to neurons and synapses. The model proposes that the recently evolved and extensive myelination of the human brain underlies both our unique abilities and susceptibility to highly prevalent age-related neuropsychiatric disorders such as late onset AD (LOAD). It regards oligodendrocytes and the myelin they produce as being both critical for circuit function and uniquely vulnerable to damage. This perspective reframes key observations such as axonal transport disruptions, formation of axonal swellings/sphenoids and neuritic plaques, and proteinaceous deposits such as Aβ and tau as by-products of homeostatic myelin repair processes. It delineates empirically testable mechanisms of action for genes underlying FAD and LOAD and provides “upstream” treatment targets. Such interventions could potentially treat multiple degenerative brain disorders by mitigating the effects of aging and associated changes in iron, cholesterol, and free radicals on oligodendrocytes and their myelin. PMID:19775776

  10. Role of Astroglial Hemichannels and Pannexons in Memory and Neurodegenerative Diseases.

    PubMed

    Orellana, Juan A; Retamal, Mauricio A; Moraga-Amaro, Rodrigo; Stehberg, Jimmy

    2016-01-01

    Under physiological conditions, astroglial hemichannels and pannexons allow the release of gliotransmitters from astrocytes. These gliotransmitters are critical in modulating synaptic transmission, plasticity and memory. However, recent evidence suggests that under pathological conditions, they may be central in the development of various neurodegenerative diseases. Here we review current literature on the role of astroglial hemichannels and pannexons in memory, stress and the development of neurodegenerative diseases, and propose that they are not only crucial for normal brain function, including memory, but also a potential target for the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases.

  11. Role of Astroglial Hemichannels and Pannexons in Memory and Neurodegenerative Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Orellana, Juan A.; Retamal, Mauricio A.; Moraga-Amaro, Rodrigo; Stehberg, Jimmy

    2016-01-01

    Under physiological conditions, astroglial hemichannels and pannexons allow the release of gliotransmitters from astrocytes. These gliotransmitters are critical in modulating synaptic transmission, plasticity and memory. However, recent evidence suggests that under pathological conditions, they may be central in the development of various neurodegenerative diseases. Here we review current literature on the role of astroglial hemichannels and pannexons in memory, stress and the development of neurodegenerative diseases, and propose that they are not only crucial for normal brain function, including memory, but also a potential target for the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:27489539

  12. A Systematic Investigation into Aging Related Genes in Brain and Their Relationship with Alzheimer’s Disease

    PubMed Central

    Meng, Guofeng; Zhong, Xiaoyan; Mei, Hongkang

    2016-01-01

    Aging, as a complex biological process, is accompanied by the accumulation of functional loses at different levels, which makes age to be the biggest risk factor to many neurological diseases. Even following decades of investigation, the process of aging is still far from being fully understood, especially at a systematic level. In this study, we identified aging related genes in brain by collecting the ones with sustained and consistent gene expression or DNA methylation changes in the aging process. Functional analysis with Gene Ontology to these genes suggested transcriptional regulators to be the most affected genes in the aging process. Transcription regulation analysis found some transcription factors, especially Specificity Protein 1 (SP1), to play important roles in regulating aging related gene expression. Module-based functional analysis indicated these genes to be associated with many well-known aging related pathways, supporting the validity of our approach to select aging related genes. Finally, we investigated the roles of aging related genes on Alzheimer’s Disease (AD). We found that aging and AD related genes both involved some common pathways, which provided a possible explanation why aging made the brain more vulnerable to Alzheimer’s Disease. PMID:26937969

  13. Is age-related failure of metabolic reprogramming a principal mediator in idiopathic Parkinson's disease? Implications for treatment and inverse cancer risk.

    PubMed

    Engel, Peter A

    2016-08-01

    Idiopathic Parkinson's disease (IPD) is a neurodegenerative disorder characterized by selective degeneration of the substantia nigra pars compacta (SNc), dorsal motor nucleus of the vagus and other vulnerable nervous system regions characterized by extensive axonal arborization and intense energy requirements. Systemic age-related depression of mitochondrial function, oxidative phosphorylation (OXPHOS) and depressed expression of genes supporting energy homeostasis is more severe in IPD than normal aging such that energy supply may exceed regional demand. In IPD, the overall risk of malignancy is reduced. Cancer is a collection of proliferative diseases marked by malignant transformation, dysregulated mitosis, invasion and metastasis. Many cancers demonstrate normal mitochondrial function, preserved OXPHOS, competent mechanisms of energy homeostasis, and metabolic reprogramming capacities that are lacking in IPD. Metabolic reprogramming adjusts OXPHOS and glycolytic pathways in response to changing metabolic needs. These opposite metabolic features form the basis of a two component hypothesis. First, that depressed mitochondrial function, OXPHOS deficiency and impaired metabolic reprogramming contribute to focal energy failure, neurodegeneration and disease expression in IPD. Second, that the same systemic metabolic deficits inhibit development and proliferation of malignancies in IPD. Studies of mitochondrial aging, familial PD (FPD), the lysosomal storage disorder, Gaucher's disease, Parkinson's disease cybrids, the mitochondrial cytopathies, and disease-related metabolic reprogramming both in IPD and cancer provide support for this model. PMID:27372878

  14. MicroRNAs in Human Diseases: From Autoimmune Diseases to Skin, Psychiatric and Neurodegenerative Diseases.

    PubMed

    Ha, Tai-You

    2011-10-01

    MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are small noncoding RNA molecules that negatively regulate gene expression via degradation or translational repression of their target messenger RNAs (mRNAs). Recent studies have clearly demonstrated that miRNAs play critical roles in several biologic processes, including cell cycle, differentiation, cell development, cell growth, and apoptosis and that miRNAs are highly expressed in regulatory T (Treg) cells and a wide range of miRNAs are involved in the regulation of immunity and in the prevention of autoimmunity. It has been increasingly reported that miRNAs are associated with various human diseases like autoimmune disease, skin disease, neurological disease and psychiatric disease. Recently, the identification of mi- RNAs in skin has added a new dimension in the regulatory network and attracted significant interest in this novel layer of gene regulation. Although miRNA research in the field of dermatology is still relatively new, miRNAs have been the subject of much dermatological interest in skin morphogenesis and in regulating angiogenesis. In addition, miRNAs are moving rapidly onto center stage as key regulators of neuronal development and function in addition to important contributions to neurodegenerative disorder. Moreover, there is now compelling evidence that dysregulation of miRNA networks is implicated in the development and onset of human neruodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, Huntington's disease, Tourette's syndrome, Down syndrome, depression and schizophrenia. In this review, I briefly summarize the current studies about the roles of miRNAs in various autoimmune diseases, skin diseases, psychoneurological disorders and mental stress.

  15. Gene therapy for Parkinson's disease: state-of-the-art treatments for neurodegenerative disease.

    PubMed

    Douglas, Michael R

    2013-06-01

    Pharmacological and surgical treatments offer symptomatic benefits to patients with Parkinson's disease; however, as the condition progresses, patients experience gradual worsening in symptom control, with the development of a range of disabling complications. In addition, none of the currently available therapies have convincingly shown disease-modifying effects - either in slowing or reversing the disease. These problems have led to extensive research into the possible use of gene therapy as a treatment for Parkinson's disease. Several treatments have reached human clinical trial stages, providing important information on the risks and benefits of this novel therapeutic approach, and the tantalizing promise of improved control of this currently incurable neurodegenerative disorder.

  16. Cell-to-cell transmission of pathogenic proteins in neurodegenerative diseases

    PubMed Central

    Guo, Jing L; Lee, Virginia M Y

    2014-01-01

    A common feature of many neurodegenerative diseases is the deposition of β-sheet-rich amyloid aggregates formed by proteins specific to these diseases. These protein aggregates are thought to cause neuronal dysfunction, directly or indirectly. Recent studies have strongly implicated cell-to-cell transmission of misfolded proteins as a common mechanism for the onset and progression of various neurodegenerative disorders. Emerging evidence also suggests the presence of conformationally diverse ‘strains’ of each type of disease protein, which may be another shared feature of amyloid aggregates, accounting for the tremendous heterogeneity within each type of neurodegenerative disease. Although there are many more questions to be answered, these studies have opened up new avenues for therapeutic interventions in neurodegenerative disorders. PMID:24504409

  17. [The age-related macular degeneration as a vascular disease/part of systemic vasculopathy: contributions to its pathogenesis].

    PubMed

    Fischer, Tamás

    2015-03-01

    The wall of blood vessels including those in choroids may be harmed by several repeated and/or prolonged mechanical, physical, chemical, microbiological, immunologic, and genetic impacts (risk factors), which may trigger a protracted response, the so-called host defense response. As a consequence, pathological changes resulting in vascular injury (e. g. atherosclerosis, age-related macular degeneration) may be evolved. Risk factors can also act directly on the endothelium through an increased production of reactive oxygen species promoting an endothelial activation, which leads to endothelial dysfunction, the onset of vascular disease. Thus, endothelial dysfunction is a link between the harmful stimulus and vascular injury; any kind of harmful stimuli may trigger the defensive chain that results in inflammation that may lead to vascular injury. It has been shown that even early age-related macular degeneration is associated with the presence of diffuse arterial disease and patients with early age-related macular degeneration demonstrate signs of systemic and retinal vascular alterations. Chronic inflammation, a feature of AMD, is tightly linked to diseases associated with ED: AMD is accompanied by a general inflammatory response, in the form of complement system activation, similar to that observed in degenerative vascular diseases such as atherosclerosis. All these facts indicate that age-related macular degeneration may be a vascular disease (or part of a systemic vasculopathy). This recognition could have therapeutic implications because restoration of endothelial dysfunction may prevent the development or improve vascular disease resulting in prevention or improvement of age-related macular degeneration as well.

  18. [Non-pharmacologic therapy of age-related macular degeneration, based on the etiopathogenesis of the disease].

    PubMed

    Fischer, Tamás

    2015-07-12

    It has a great therapeutic significance that the disorder of the vascular endothelium, which supplies the affected ocular structures, plays a major role in the development of age-related macular degeneration. Chronic inflammation is closely linked to diseases associated with endothelial dysfuncition and age-related macular degeneration is accompanied by a general inflammatory response. The vascular wall including those in chorioids may be activated by several repeated and/or prolonged mechanical, physical, chemical, microbiological, immunologic and genetic factors causing a protracted host defence response with a consequent vascular damage, which leads to age-related macular degeneration. Based on this concept, age-related macular degeneration is a local manifestation of the systemic vascular disease. This recognition should have therapeutic implications because restoration of endothelial dysfunction can stabilize the condition of chronic vascular disease including age-related macular degeneration, as well. Restoration of endothelial dysfunction by non-pharmacological or pharmacological interventions may prevent the development or improve endothelial dysfunction resulting in prevention or improvement of age-related macular degeneration. Non-pharmacological interventions which may have beneficial effect in endothelial dysfunction include (1) smoking cessation; (2) reduction of increased body weight; (3) adequate physical activity; (4) appropriate diet (a) proper dose of flavonoids, polyphenols and kurcumin; (b) omega-3 long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids: docosahexaenoic acid and eicosapentaenoic acid; (c) carotenoids, lutein and zeaxanthins), (d) management of dietary glycemic index, (e) caloric restriction, and (5) elimination of stressful lifestyle. Non-pharmacological interventions should be preferable even if medicaments are also used for the treatment of endothelial dysfunction.

  19. Transcriptomics study of neurodegenerative disease: emphasis on synaptic dysfunction mechanism in Alzheimer's disease.

    PubMed

    Karim, Sajjad; Mirza, Zeenat; Ansari, Shakeel A; Rasool, Mahmood; Iqbal, Zafar; Sohrab, Sayed S; Kamal, Mohammad A; Abuzenadah, Adel M; Al-Qahtani, Mohammed H

    2014-01-01

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is a common neurodegenerative disorder primarily affecting memory and thinking ability; caused by progressive degeneration and death of nerve cells. In this study, we integrated multiple dataset retrieved from the National Center for Biotechnology Information's Gene Expression Omnibus database, and took a systems-biology approach to compare and distinguish the molecular network based synaptic dysregulation associated with AD in particular and neurodegenerative diseases in general. We first identified 832 differentially expressed genes using cut off P value <0.5 and fold change > 2, followed by gene ontology study to identify genes associated with synapse (n=95) [membrane associated guanylate kinase, 2, amyloid beta precursor protein, neurotrophic tyrosine kinase, receptor, type 2], synapse part [γ-aminobutyric acid A receptor, γ1], synaptic vesicle [glutamate receptor, ionotropic, α-amino-3-hydroxy-5- methyl-4-isoxazole propionic acid receptor 2, synaptoporin], pre- and post-synaptic density [neuronal calcium sensor 1, glutamate receptor, metabotropic 3]. We integrated these data with known pathways using Ingenuity Pathway Analysis tool and found following synapse associated pathways to be most affected; γ-aminobutyric acid receptor signaling, synaptic long term potentiation/depression, nuclear factor-erythroid 2-related factor 2-mediated oxidative stress response, huntington's disease signaling and Reelin signaling in neurons. In conclusion, synaptic dysfunction is tightly associated with the development and progression of neurodegenerative diseases like AD. PMID:25230228

  20. Causes and Consequences of MicroRNA Dysregulation in Neurodegenerative Diseases.

    PubMed

    Tan, Lin; Yu, Jin-Tai; Tan, Lan

    2015-01-01

    Neurodegenerative diseases, including Alzheimer's disease (AD), Parkinson's disease (PD), Huntington's disease (HD) and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), originate from a loss of neurons in the central nervous system (CNS) and are severely debilitating. The incidence of neurodegenerative diseases increases with age, and they are expected to become more common due to extended life expectancy. Because of no clear mechanisms, these diseases have become a major challenge in neurobiology. It is well recognized that these disorders become the culmination of many different genetic and environmental influences. Prior studies have shown that microRNAs (miRNAs) are pathologically altered during the inexorable course of some neurodegenerative diseases, suggesting that miRNAs may be the contributing factor in neurodegeneration. Here, we review what is known about the involvement of miRNAs in the pathogenesis of neurodegenerative diseases. The biogenesis of miRNAs and various functions of miRNAs that act as the chief regulators will be discussed. We focus in particular on dysregulation of miRNAs which leads to several neurodegenerative diseases from three aspects: miRNA-generating disorders, miRNA-targeting genes and epigenetic alterations. Furthermore, recent evidences have shown that circulating miRNA expression levels are changed in patients with neurodegenerative diseases. Circulating miRNA expression levels are reported in patients in order to evaluate their application as biomarkers of these diseases. A discussion is included with a potential diagnostic biomarker and the possible future direction in exploring the nexus between miRNAs and various neurodegenerative diseases.

  1. Pathology of the Aging Brain in Domestic and Laboratory Animals, and Animal Models of Human Neurodegenerative Diseases.

    PubMed

    Youssef, S A; Capucchio, M T; Rofina, J E; Chambers, J K; Uchida, K; Nakayama, H; Head, E

    2016-03-01

    According to the WHO, the proportion of people over 60 years is increasing and expected to reach 22% of total world's population in 2050. In parallel, recent animal demographic studies have shown that the life expectancy of pet dogs and cats is increasing. Brain aging is associated not only with molecular and morphological changes but also leads to different degrees of behavioral and cognitive dysfunction. Common age-related brain lesions in humans include brain atrophy, neuronal loss, amyloid plaques, cerebrovascular amyloid angiopathy, vascular mineralization, neurofibrillary tangles, meningeal osseous metaplasia, and accumulation of lipofuscin. In aging humans, the most common neurodegenerative disorder is Alzheimer's disease (AD), which progressively impairs cognition, behavior, and quality of life. Pathologic changes comparable to the lesions of AD are described in several other animal species, although their clinical significance and effect on cognitive function are poorly documented. This review describes the commonly reported age-associated neurologic lesions in domestic and laboratory animals and the relationship of these lesions to cognitive dysfunction. Also described are the comparative interspecies similarities and differences to AD and other human neurodegenerative diseases including Parkinson's disease and progressive supranuclear palsy, and the spontaneous and transgenic animal models of these diseases. PMID:26869150

  2. Mouse models rarely mimic the transcriptome of human neurodegenerative diseases: A systematic bioinformatics-based critique of preclinical models.

    PubMed

    Burns, Terry C; Li, Matthew D; Mehta, Swapnil; Awad, Ahmed J; Morgan, Alexander A

    2015-07-15

    Translational research for neurodegenerative disease depends intimately upon animal models. Unfortunately, promising therapies developed using mouse models mostly fail in clinical trials, highlighting uncertainty about how well mouse models mimic human neurodegenerative disease at the molecular level. We compared the transcriptional signature of neurodegeneration in mouse models of Alzheimer׳s disease (AD), Parkinson׳s disease (PD), Huntington׳s disease (HD) and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) to human disease. In contrast to aging, which demonstrated a conserved transcriptome between humans and mice, only 3 of 19 animal models showed significant enrichment for gene sets comprising the most dysregulated up- and down-regulated human genes. Spearman׳s correlation analysis revealed even healthy human aging to be more closely related to human neurodegeneration than any mouse model of AD, PD, ALS or HD. Remarkably, mouse models frequently upregulated stress response genes that were consistently downregulated in human diseases. Among potential alternate models of neurodegeneration, mouse prion disease outperformed all other disease-specific models. Even among the best available animal models, conserved differences between mouse and human transcriptomes were found across multiple animal model versus human disease comparisons, surprisingly, even including aging. Relative to mouse models, mouse disease signatures demonstrated consistent trends toward preserved mitochondrial function protein catabolism, DNA repair responses, and chromatin maintenance. These findings suggest a more complex and multifactorial pathophysiology in human neurodegeneration than is captured through standard animal models, and suggest that even among conserved physiological processes such as aging, mice are less prone to exhibit neurodegeneration-like changes. This work may help explain the poor track record of mouse-based translational therapies for neurodegeneration and provides a path

  3. Neurodegenerative diseases: occupational occurrence and potential risk factors, 1982 through 1991.

    PubMed Central

    Schulte, P A; Burnett, C A; Boeniger, M F; Johnson, J

    1996-01-01

    OBJECTIVES: To identify potential occupational risk factors, this study examined the occupational occurrence of various neurodegenerative diseases. METHODS: Death certificates from 27 states in the National Occupational Mortality Surveillance System were evaluated for 1982 to 1991. Proportionate mortality ratios were calculated by occupation for presenile dementia, Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, and motor neuron disease. RESULTS: Excess mortality was observed for all four categories in the following occupational categories: teachers; medical personnel; machinists and machine operators; scientists; writers/designers/entertainers; and support and clerical workers. Clusters of three neurodegenerative diseases were also found in occupations involving pesticides, solvents, and electromagnetic fields and in legal, library, social, and religious work. Early death from motor neuron disease was found for firefighters, janitors, military personnel, teachers, excavation machine operators, and veterinarians, among others. CONCLUSIONS: Neurodegenerative disease occurs more frequently in some occupations than in others, and this distribution, which may indicate occupational risk factors, should be further investigated. PMID:8806381

  4. A Review of Quality of Life after Predictive Testing for and Earlier Identification of Neurodegenerative Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Paulsen, Jane S.; Nance, Martha; Kim, Ji-In; Carlozzi, Noelle E.; Panegyres, Peter K.; Erwin, Cheryl; Goh, Anita; McCusker, Elizabeth; Williams, Janet K.

    2013-01-01

    The past decade has witnessed an explosion of evidence suggesting that many neurodegenerative diseases can be detected years, if not decades, earlier than previously thought. To date, these scientific advances have not provoked any parallel translational or clinical improvements. There is an urgency to capitalize on this momentum so earlier detection of disease can be more readily translated into improved health-related quality of life for families at risk for, or suffering with, neurodegenerative diseases. In this review, we discuss health-related quality of life (HRQOL) measurement in neurodegenerative diseases and the importance of these “patient reported outcomes” for all clinical research. Next, we address HRQOL following early identification or predictive genetic testing in some neurodegenerative diseases: Huntington disease, Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, Dementia with Lewy bodies, frontotemporal dementia, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, prion diseases, hereditary ataxias, Dentatorubral-pallidoluysian atrophy and Wilson's disease. After a brief report of available direct-to-consumer genetic tests, we address the juxtaposition of earlier disease identification with assumed reluctance towards predictive genetic testing. Forty-one studies examining health related outcomes following predictive genetic testing for neurodegenerative disease suggested that (a) extreme or catastrophic outcomes are rare; (b) consequences commonly include transiently increased anxiety and/or depression; (c) most participants report no regret; (d) many persons report extensive benefits to receiving genetic information; and (e) stigmatization and discrimination for genetic diseases are poorly understood and policy and laws are needed. Caution is appropriate for earlier identification of neurodegenerative diseases but findings suggest further progress is safe, feasible and likely to advance clinical care. PMID:24036231

  5. A review of quality of life after predictive testing for and earlier identification of neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Paulsen, Jane S; Nance, Martha; Kim, Ji-In; Carlozzi, Noelle E; Panegyres, Peter K; Erwin, Cheryl; Goh, Anita; McCusker, Elizabeth; Williams, Janet K

    2013-11-01

    The past decade has witnessed an explosion of evidence suggesting that many neurodegenerative diseases can be detected years, if not decades, earlier than previously thought. To date, these scientific advances have not provoked any parallel translational or clinical improvements. There is an urgency to capitalize on this momentum so earlier detection of disease can be more readily translated into improved health-related quality of life for families at risk for, or suffering with, neurodegenerative diseases. In this review, we discuss health-related quality of life (HRQOL) measurement in neurodegenerative diseases and the importance of these "patient reported outcomes" for all clinical research. Next, we address HRQOL following early identification or predictive genetic testing in some neurodegenerative diseases: Huntington disease, Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, Dementia with Lewy bodies, frontotemporal dementia, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, prion diseases, hereditary ataxias, Dentatorubral-pallidoluysian atrophy and Wilson's disease. After a brief report of available direct-to-consumer genetic tests, we address the juxtaposition of earlier disease identification with assumed reluctance toward predictive genetic testing. Forty-one studies examining health-related outcomes following predictive genetic testing for neurodegenerative disease suggested that (a) extreme or catastrophic outcomes are rare; (b) consequences commonly include transiently increased anxiety and/or depression; (c) most participants report no regret; (d) many persons report extensive benefits to receiving genetic information; and (e) stigmatization and discrimination for genetic diseases are poorly understood and policy and laws are needed. Caution is appropriate for earlier identification of neurodegenerative diseases but findings suggest further progress is safe, feasible and likely to advance clinical care. PMID:24036231

  6. Cdk5 at crossroads of protein oligomerization in neurodegenerative diseases: facts and hypotheses.

    PubMed

    Wilkaniec, Anna; Czapski, Grzegorz A; Adamczyk, Agata

    2016-01-01

    Cyclin-dependent kinase 5 (Cdk5) is involved in proper neurodevelopment and brain function and serves as a switch between neuronal survival and death. Overactivation of Cdk5 is associated with many neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer's or Parkinson's diseases. It is believed that in those diseases Cdk5 may be an important link between disease-initiating factors and cell death effectors. A common hallmark of neurodegenerative disorders is incorrect folding of specific proteins, thus leading to their intra- and extracellular accumulation in the nervous system. Abnormal Cdk5 signaling contributes to dysfunction of individual proteins and has a substantial role in either direct or indirect interactions of proteins common to, and critical in, different neurodegenerative diseases. While the roles of Cdk5 in α-synuclein (ASN) - tau or β-amyloid peptide (Aβ) - tau interactions are well documented, its contribution to many other pertinent interactions, such as that of ASN with Aβ, or interactions of the Aβ - ASN - tau triad with prion proteins, did not get beyond plausible hypotheses and remains to be proven. Understanding of the exact position of Cdk5 in the deleterious feed-forward loop critical for development and progression of neurodegenerative diseases may help designing successful therapeutic strategies of several fatal neurodegenerative diseases. Cyclin-dependent kinase 5 (Cdk5) is associated with many neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer's or Parkinson's diseases. It is believed that in those diseases Cdk5 may be an important factor involved in protein misfolding, toxicity and interaction. We suggest that Cdk5 may contribute to the vicious circle of neurotoxic events involved in the pathogenesis of different neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:26376455

  7. Cdk5 at crossroads of protein oligomerization in neurodegenerative diseases: facts and hypotheses.

    PubMed

    Wilkaniec, Anna; Czapski, Grzegorz A; Adamczyk, Agata

    2016-01-01

    Cyclin-dependent kinase 5 (Cdk5) is involved in proper neurodevelopment and brain function and serves as a switch between neuronal survival and death. Overactivation of Cdk5 is associated with many neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer's or Parkinson's diseases. It is believed that in those diseases Cdk5 may be an important link between disease-initiating factors and cell death effectors. A common hallmark of neurodegenerative disorders is incorrect folding of specific proteins, thus leading to their intra- and extracellular accumulation in the nervous system. Abnormal Cdk5 signaling contributes to dysfunction of individual proteins and has a substantial role in either direct or indirect interactions of proteins common to, and critical in, different neurodegenerative diseases. While the roles of Cdk5 in α-synuclein (ASN) - tau or β-amyloid peptide (Aβ) - tau interactions are well documented, its contribution to many other pertinent interactions, such as that of ASN with Aβ, or interactions of the Aβ - ASN - tau triad with prion proteins, did not get beyond plausible hypotheses and remains to be proven. Understanding of the exact position of Cdk5 in the deleterious feed-forward loop critical for development and progression of neurodegenerative diseases may help designing successful therapeutic strategies of several fatal neurodegenerative diseases. Cyclin-dependent kinase 5 (Cdk5) is associated with many neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer's or Parkinson's diseases. It is believed that in those diseases Cdk5 may be an important factor involved in protein misfolding, toxicity and interaction. We suggest that Cdk5 may contribute to the vicious circle of neurotoxic events involved in the pathogenesis of different neurodegenerative diseases.

  8. Beta-Amyloid Precursor Protein (βAPP) Processing in Alzheimer's Disease (AD) and Age-Related Macular Degeneration (AMD).

    PubMed

    Zhao, Yuhai; Bhattacharjee, Surjyadipta; Jones, Brandon M; Hill, James M; Clement, Christian; Sambamurti, Kumar; Dua, Prerna; Lukiw, Walter J

    2015-08-01

    Amyloid is a generic term for insoluble, often intensely hydrophobic, fibrous protein aggregates that arise from inappropriately folded versions of naturally-occurring polypeptides. The abnormal generation and accumulation of amyloid, often referred to as amyloidogenesis, has been associated with the immune and pro-inflammatory pathology of several progressive age-related diseases of the human central nervous system (CNS) including Alzheimer's disease (AD) and age-related macular degeneration (AMD). This 'research perspective' paper reviews some of the research history, biophysics, molecular-genetics and environmental factors concerning the contribution of amyloid beta (Aβ) peptides, derived from beta-amyloid precursor protein (βAPP), to AD and AMD that suggests an extensive similarity in immune and inflammatory degenerative mechanisms between these two CNS diseases.

  9. There's Something Wrong with my MAM; the ER–Mitochondria Axis and Neurodegenerative Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Paillusson, Sebastien; Stoica, Radu; Gomez-Suaga, Patricia; Lau, Dawn H.W.; Mueller, Sarah; Miller, Tanya; Miller, Christopher C.J.

    2016-01-01

    Alzheimer's disease (AD), Parkinson's disease (PD), and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis with associated frontotemporal dementia (ALS/FTD) are major neurodegenerative diseases for which there are no cures. All are characterised by damage to several seemingly disparate cellular processes. The broad nature of this damage makes understanding pathogenic mechanisms and devising new treatments difficult. Can the different damaged functions be linked together in a common disease pathway and which damaged function should be targeted for therapy? Many functions damaged in neurodegenerative diseases are regulated by communications that mitochondria make with a specialised region of the endoplasmic reticulum (ER; mitochondria-associated ER membranes or ‘MAM’). Moreover, several recent studies have shown that disturbances to ER–mitochondria contacts occur in neurodegenerative diseases. Here, we review these findings. PMID:26899735

  10. The potential of microRNAs as biofluid markers of neurodegenerative diseases--a systematic review.

    PubMed

    Danborg, Pia B; Simonsen, Anja H; Waldemar, Gunhild; Heegaard, Niels H H

    2014-06-01

    MicroRNAs (miRNA) are biological molecules transcribed from non-protein coding regions of the genome, participating in regulating cellular processes. MiRNAs in biofluids may possess neurodegenerative disease biomarker potential for screening tests, differential diagnosis and disease progression monitoring. This systematic review clarifies biomarker potential of miRNAs detected in biofluids of neurodegenerative disease patients. Thirty-three and ten miRNAs displayed significant expression between patients with multiple sclerosis and Alzheimer's disease, respectively, compared to healthy controls in minimum two studies. Thirty-eight miRNAs showed biomarker potential by distinguishing significantly between minimum two diseases. Summarized data directs future research towards discovering new biomarkers for neurodegenerative diseases.

  11. Human whole genome genotype and transcriptome data for Alzheimer’s and other neurodegenerative diseases

    PubMed Central

    Allen, Mariet; Carrasquillo, Minerva M.; Funk, Cory; Heavner, Benjamin D.; Zou, Fanggeng; Younkin, Curtis S.; Burgess, Jeremy D.; Chai, High-Seng; Crook, Julia; Eddy, James A.; Li, Hongdong; Logsdon, Ben; Peters, Mette A.; Dang, Kristen K.; Wang, Xue; Serie, Daniel; Wang, Chen; Nguyen, Thuy; Lincoln, Sarah; Malphrus, Kimberly; Bisceglio, Gina; Li, Ma; Golde, Todd E.; Mangravite, Lara M.; Asmann, Yan; Price, Nathan D.; Petersen, Ronald C.; Graff-Radford, Neill R.; Dickson, Dennis W.; Younkin, Steven G.; Ertekin-Taner, Nilüfer

    2016-01-01

    Previous genome-wide association studies (GWAS), conducted by our group and others, have identified loci that harbor risk variants for neurodegenerative diseases, including Alzheimer's disease (AD). Human disease variants are enriched for polymorphisms that affect gene expression, including some that are known to associate with expression changes in the brain. Postulating that many variants confer risk to neurodegenerative disease via transcriptional regulatory mechanisms, we have analyzed gene expression levels in the brain tissue of subjects with AD and related diseases. Herein, we describe our collective datasets comprised of GWAS data from 2,099 subjects; microarray gene expression data from 773 brain samples, 186 of which also have RNAseq; and an independent cohort of 556 brain samples with RNAseq. We expect that these datasets, which are available to all qualified researchers, will enable investigators to explore and identify transcriptional mechanisms contributing to neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:27727239

  12. Interest of active posturography to detect age-related and early Parkinson's disease-related impairments in mediolateral postural control.

    PubMed

    Bonnet, Cédrick T; Delval, Arnaud; Defebvre, Luc

    2014-11-15

    Patients with Parkinson's disease display impairments of postural control most particularly in active, challenging conditions. The objective of the present study was to analyze early signs of disease-related and also age-related impairments in mediolateral body extension and postural control. Fifty-five participants (18 Hoehn and Yahr stage 2 patients in the off-drug condition, 18 healthy elderly control subjects, and 19 young adults) were included in the study. The participants performed a quiet stance task and two active tasks that analyzed the performance in mediolateral body motion: a limit of stability and a rhythmic weight shift task. As expected, the patients displayed significantly lower and slower body displacement (head, neck, lower back, center of pressure) than elderly control subjects when performing the two body excursion tasks. However, the behavioral variability in both tasks was similar between the groups. Under these active conditions, the patients showed significantly lower contribution of the hip postural control mechanisms compared with the elderly control subjects. Overall, the patients seemed to lower their performance in order to prevent a mediolateral postural instability. However, these patients, at an early stage of their disease, were not unstable in quiet stance. Complementarily, elderly control subjects displayed slower body performance than young adults, which therefore showed an additional age-related impairment in mediolateral postural control. Overall, the study illustrated markers of age-related and Parkinson's disease impairments in mediolateral postural control that may constrain everyday activities in elderly adults and even more in patients with Parkinson's disease.

  13. Aging, Neurodegenerative Disease, and Traumatic Brain Injury: The Role of Neuroimaging

    PubMed Central

    Levine, Brian

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is a highly prevalent condition with significant effects on cognition and behavior. While the acute and sub-acute effects of TBI recover over time, relatively little is known about the long-term effects of TBI in relation to neurodegenerative disease. This issue has recently garnered a great deal of attention due to publicity surrounding chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) in professional athletes, although CTE is but one of several neurodegenerative disorders associated with a history of TBI. Here, we review the literative on neurodegenerative disorders linked to remote TBI. We also review the evidence for neuroimaging changes associated with unhealthy brain aging in the context of remote TBI. We conclude that neuroimaging biomarkers have significant potential to increase understanding of the mechanisms of unhealthy brain aging and neurodegeneration following TBI, with potential for identifying those at risk for unhealthy brain aging prior to the clinical manifestation of neurodegenerative disease. PMID:25192426

  14. Neuroprotection: the emerging concept of restorative neural stem cell biology for the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Carletti, Barbara; Piemonte, Fiorella; Rossi, Ferdinando

    2011-06-01

    During the past decades Neural Stem Cells have been considered as an alternative source of cells to replace lost neurons and NSC transplantation has been indicated as a promising treatment for neurodegenerative disorders. Nevertheless, the current understanding of NSC biology suggests that, far from being mere spare parts for cell replacement therapies, NSCs could play a key role in the pharmacology of neuroprotection and become protagonists of innovative treatments for neurodegenerative diseases. Here, we review this new emerging concept of NSC biology.

  15. The Influence of Na+, K+-ATPase on Glutamate Signaling in Neurodegenerative Diseases and Senescence

    PubMed Central

    Kinoshita, Paula F.; Leite, Jacqueline A.; Orellana, Ana Maria M.; Vasconcelos, Andrea R.; Quintas, Luis E. M.; Kawamoto, Elisa M.; Scavone, Cristoforo

    2016-01-01

    Decreased Na+, K+-ATPase (NKA) activity causes energy deficiency, which is commonly observed in neurodegenerative diseases. The NKA is constituted of three subunits: α, β, and γ, with four distinct isoforms of the catalytic α subunit (α1−4). Genetic mutations in the ATP1A2 gene and ATP1A3 gene, encoding the α2 and α3 subunit isoforms, respectively can cause distinct neurological disorders, concurrent to impaired NKA activity. Within the central nervous system (CNS), the α2 isoform is expressed mostly in glial cells and the α3 isoform is neuron-specific. Mutations in ATP1A2 gene can result in familial hemiplegic migraine (FHM2), while mutations in the ATP1A3 gene can cause Rapid-onset dystonia-Parkinsonism (RDP) and alternating hemiplegia of childhood (AHC), as well as the cerebellar ataxia, areflexia, pescavus, optic atrophy and sensorineural hearing loss (CAPOS) syndrome. Data indicates that the central glutamatergic system is affected by mutations in the α2 isoform, however further investigations are required to establish a connection to mutations in the α3 isoform, especially given the diagnostic confusion and overlap with glutamate transporter disease. The age-related decline in brain α2∕3 activity may arise from changes in the cyclic guanosine monophosphate (cGMP) and cGMP-dependent protein kinase (PKG) pathway. Glutamate, through nitric oxide synthase (NOS), cGMP and PKG, stimulates brain α2∕3 activity, with the glutamatergic N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptor cascade able to drive an adaptive, neuroprotective response to inflammatory and challenging stimuli, including amyloid-β. Here we review the NKA, both as an ion pump as well as a receptor that interacts with NMDA, including the role of NKA subunits mutations. Failure of the NKA-associated adaptive response mechanisms may render neurons more susceptible to degeneration over the course of aging. PMID:27313535

  16. Age-Related Declines and Disease-Associated Variation in Immune Cell Telomere Length in a Wild Mammal

    PubMed Central

    Beirne, Christopher; Delahay, Richard; Hares, Michelle; Young, Andrew

    2014-01-01

    Immunosenescence, the deterioration of immune system capability with age, may play a key role in mediating age-related declines in whole-organism performance, but the mechanisms that underpin immunosenescence are poorly understood. Biomedical research on humans and laboratory models has documented age and disease related declines in the telomere lengths of leukocytes (‘immune cells’), stimulating interest their having a potentially general role in the emergence of immunosenescent phenotypes. However, it is unknown whether such observations generalise to the immune cell populations of wild vertebrates living under ecologically realistic conditions. Here we examine longitudinal changes in the mean telomere lengths of immune cells in wild European badgers (Meles meles). Our findings provide the first evidence of within-individual age-related declines in immune cell telomere lengths in a wild vertebrate. That the rate of age-related decline in telomere length appears to be steeper within individuals than at the overall population level raises the possibility that individuals with short immune cell telomeres and/or higher rates of immune cell telomere attrition may be selectively lost from this population. We also report evidence suggestive of associations between immune cell telomere length and bovine tuberculosis infection status, with individuals detected at the most advanced stage of infection tending to have shorter immune cell telomeres than disease positive individuals. While male European badgers are larger and show higher rates of annual mortality than females, we found no evidence of a sex difference in either mean telomere length or the average rate of within-individual telomere attrition with age. Our findings lend support to the view that age-related declines in the telomere lengths of immune cells may provide one potentially general mechanism underpinning age-related declines in immunocompetence in natural populations. PMID:25268841

  17. Age-related declines and disease-associated variation in immune cell telomere length in a wild mammal.

    PubMed

    Beirne, Christopher; Delahay, Richard; Hares, Michelle; Young, Andrew

    2014-01-01

    Immunosenescence, the deterioration of immune system capability with age, may play a key role in mediating age-related declines in whole-organism performance, but the mechanisms that underpin immunosenescence are poorly understood. Biomedical research on humans and laboratory models has documented age and disease related declines in the telomere lengths of leukocytes ('immune cells'), stimulating interest their having a potentially general role in the emergence of immunosenescent phenotypes. However, it is unknown whether such observations generalise to the immune cell populations of wild vertebrates living under ecologically realistic conditions. Here we examine longitudinal changes in the mean telomere lengths of immune cells in wild European badgers (Meles meles). Our findings provide the first evidence of within-individual age-related declines in immune cell telomere lengths in a wild vertebrate. That the rate of age-related decline in telomere length appears to be steeper within individuals than at the overall population level raises the possibility that individuals with short immune cell telomeres and/or higher rates of immune cell telomere attrition may be selectively lost from this population. We also report evidence suggestive of associations between immune cell telomere length and bovine tuberculosis infection status, with individuals detected at the most advanced stage of infection tending to have shorter immune cell telomeres than disease positive individuals. While male European badgers are larger and show higher rates of annual mortality than females, we found no evidence of a sex difference in either mean telomere length or the average rate of within-individual telomere attrition with age. Our findings lend support to the view that age-related declines in the telomere lengths of immune cells may provide one potentially general mechanism underpinning age-related declines in immunocompetence in natural populations. PMID:25268841

  18. Nanoparticles and Colloids as Contributing Factors in Neurodegenerative Disease

    PubMed Central

    Bondy, Stephen C.

    2011-01-01

    This review explores the processes underlying the deleterious effects of the presence of insoluble or colloidal depositions within the central nervous system. These materials are chemically unreactive and can have a prolonged residence in the brain. They can be composed of mineral or proteinaceous materials of intrinsic or exogenous origin. Such nanoparticulates and colloids are associated with a range of slow-progressing neurodegenerative states. The potential common basis of toxicity of these materials is discussed. A shared feature of these disorders involves the appearance of deleterious inflammatory changes in the CNS. This may be due to extended and ineffective immune responses. Another aspect is the presence of excess levels of reactive oxygen species within the brain. In addition with their induction by inflammatory events, these may be further heightened by the presence of redox active transition metals to the large surface area afforded by nanoparticles and amphipathic micelles. PMID:21776226

  19. Nanoparticles and colloids as contributing factors in neurodegenerative disease.

    PubMed

    Bondy, Stephen C

    2011-06-01

    This review explores the processes underlying the deleterious effects of the presence of insoluble or colloidal depositions within the central nervous system. These materials are chemically unreactive and can have a prolonged residence in the brain. They can be composed of mineral or proteinaceous materials of intrinsic or exogenous origin. Such nanoparticulates and colloids are associated with a range of slow-progressing neurodegenerative states. The potential common basis of toxicity of these materials is discussed. A shared feature of these disorders involves the appearance of deleterious inflammatory changes in the CNS. This may be due to extended and ineffective immune responses. Another aspect is the presence of excess levels of reactive oxygen species within the brain. In addition with their induction by inflammatory events, these may be further heightened by the presence of redox active transition metals to the large surface area afforded by nanoparticles and amphipathic micelles.

  20. Omega-3 Fatty Acids in Early Prevention of Inflammatory Neurodegenerative Disease: A Focus on Alzheimer's Disease.

    PubMed

    Thomas, J; Thomas, C J; Radcliffe, J; Itsiopoulos, C

    2015-01-01

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is the leading cause of dementia and the most common neurodegenerative disease in the elderly. Furthermore, AD has provided the most positive indication to support the fact that inflammation contributes to neurodegenerative disease. The exact etiology of AD is unknown, but environmental and genetic factors are thought to contribute, such as advancing age, family history, presence of chronic diseases such as cardiovascular disease (CVD) and diabetes, and poor diet and lifestyle. It is hypothesised that early prevention or management of inflammation could delay the onset or reduce the symptoms of AD. Normal physiological changes to the brain with ageing include depletion of long chain omega-3 fatty acids and brains of AD patients have lower docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) levels. DHA supplementation can reduce markers of inflammation. This review specifically focusses on the evidence in humans from epidemiological, dietary intervention, and supplementation studies, which supports the role of long chain omega-3 fatty acids in the prevention or delay of cognitive decline in AD in its early stages. Longer term trials with long chain omega-3 supplementation in early stage AD are warranted. We also highlight the importance of overall quality and composition of the diet to protect against AD and dementia.

  1. Omega-3 Fatty Acids in Early Prevention of Inflammatory Neurodegenerative Disease: A Focus on Alzheimer's Disease.

    PubMed

    Thomas, J; Thomas, C J; Radcliffe, J; Itsiopoulos, C

    2015-01-01

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is the leading cause of dementia and the most common neurodegenerative disease in the elderly. Furthermore, AD has provided the most positive indication to support the fact that inflammation contributes to neurodegenerative disease. The exact etiology of AD is unknown, but environmental and genetic factors are thought to contribute, such as advancing age, family history, presence of chronic diseases such as cardiovascular disease (CVD) and diabetes, and poor diet and lifestyle. It is hypothesised that early prevention or management of inflammation could delay the onset or reduce the symptoms of AD. Normal physiological changes to the brain with ageing include depletion of long chain omega-3 fatty acids and brains of AD patients have lower docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) levels. DHA supplementation can reduce markers of inflammation. This review specifically focusses on the evidence in humans from epidemiological, dietary intervention, and supplementation studies, which supports the role of long chain omega-3 fatty acids in the prevention or delay of cognitive decline in AD in its early stages. Longer term trials with long chain omega-3 supplementation in early stage AD are warranted. We also highlight the importance of overall quality and composition of the diet to protect against AD and dementia. PMID:26301243

  2. Omega-3 Fatty Acids in Early Prevention of Inflammatory Neurodegenerative Disease: A Focus on Alzheimer's Disease

    PubMed Central

    Thomas, J.; Thomas, C. J.; Radcliffe, J.; Itsiopoulos, C.

    2015-01-01

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) is the leading cause of dementia and the most common neurodegenerative disease in the elderly. Furthermore, AD has provided the most positive indication to support the fact that inflammation contributes to neurodegenerative disease. The exact etiology of AD is unknown, but environmental and genetic factors are thought to contribute, such as advancing age, family history, presence of chronic diseases such as cardiovascular disease (CVD) and diabetes, and poor diet and lifestyle. It is hypothesised that early prevention or management of inflammation could delay the onset or reduce the symptoms of AD. Normal physiological changes to the brain with ageing include depletion of long chain omega-3 fatty acids and brains of AD patients have lower docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) levels. DHA supplementation can reduce markers of inflammation. This review specifically focusses on the evidence in humans from epidemiological, dietary intervention, and supplementation studies, which supports the role of long chain omega-3 fatty acids in the prevention or delay of cognitive decline in AD in its early stages. Longer term trials with long chain omega-3 supplementation in early stage AD are warranted. We also highlight the importance of overall quality and composition of the diet to protect against AD and dementia. PMID:26301243

  3. Rejuvenation of senescent cells-the road to postponing human aging and age-related disease?

    PubMed

    Sikora, Ewa

    2013-07-01

    Cellular senescence is the state of permanent inhibition of cell proliferation. Replicative senescence occurs due to the end replication problem and shortening telomeres with each cell division leading to DNA damage response (DDR). The number of short telomeres increases with age and age-related pathologies. Stress induced senescence, although not accompanied by attrition of telomeres, is also attributed to the DDR induced by irreparable DNA lesions in telomeric DNA. Senescent cells characterized by the presence of γH2AX, the common marker of double DNA strand breaks, and other senescence markers including activity of SA-β-gal, accumulate in tissues of aged animals and humans as well as at sites of pathology. It is believed that cellular senescence evolved as a cancer barrier since non-proliferating senescent cells cannot be transformed to neoplastic cells. On the other hand senescent cells favor cancer development, just like other age-related pathologies, by creating a low grade inflammatory state due to senescence associated secretory phenotype (SASP). Reversal/inhibition of cellular senescence could prolong healthy life span, thus many attempts have been undertaken to influence cellular senescence. The two main approaches are genetic and pharmacological/nutritional modifications of cell fate. The first one concerns cell reprogramming by induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs), which in vitro is effective even in cells undergoing senescence, or derived from very old or progeroid patients. The second approach concerns modification of senescence signaling pathways just like TOR-induced by pharmacological or with natural agents. However, knowing that aging is unavoidable we cannot expect its elimination, but prolonging healthy life span is a goal worth serious consideration. PMID:23064316

  4. The emerging role of Notch pathway in ageing: Focus on the related mechanisms in age-related diseases.

    PubMed

    Balistreri, Carmela Rita; Madonna, Rosalinda; Melino, Gerry; Caruso, Calogero

    2016-08-01

    Notch signaling is an evolutionarily conserved pathway, which is fundamental for the development of all tissues, organs and systems of human body. Recently, a considerable and still growing number of studies have highlighted the contribution of Notch signaling in various pathological processes of the adult life, such as age-related diseases. In particular, the Notch pathway has emerged as major player in the maintenance of tissue specific homeostasis, through the control of proliferation, migration, phenotypes and functions of tissue cells, as well as in the cross-talk between inflammatory cells and the innate immune system, and in onset of inflammatory age-related diseases. However, until now there is a confounding evidence about the related mechanisms. Here, we discuss mechanisms through which Notch signaling acts in a very complex network of pathways, where it seems to have the crucial role of hub. Thus, we stress the possibility to use Notch pathway, the related molecules and pathways constituting this network, both as innovative (predictive, diagnostic and prognostic) biomarkers and targets for personalised treatments for age-related diseases. PMID:27328278

  5. The role of induced pluripotent stem cells in regenerative medicine: neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Peng, Jun; Zeng, Xianmin

    2011-07-28

    Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, Huntington's disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, and Friedreich's ataxia are the most common human neurodegenerative diseases pathologically characterized by a progressive and specific loss of certain neuronal populations. The exact mechanisms of neuronal cell death in these diseases are unclear, although some forms of the diseases are inherited and genes causing these diseases have been identified. Currently there are no effective clinical therapies for many of these diseases. The recently acquired ability to reprogram human adult somatic cells to induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) in culture may provide a powerful tool for in vitro neurodegenerative disease modeling and an unlimited source for cell replacement therapy. In the present review, we summarize recent progress on iPSC generation and differentiation into neuronal cell types and discuss the potential application for in vitro disease mechanism study and in vivo cell replacement therapy.

  6. The Nrf2-ARE pathway: a valuable therapeutic target for the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases

    PubMed Central

    Joshi, Gururaj; Johnson, Jeffrey A.

    2013-01-01

    Modulation of NF-E2 related factor 2 (Nrf2) has been shown in several neurodegenerative disorders. The overexpression of Nrf2 has become a potential therapeutic avenue for various neurodegenerative disorders such as Parkinson, Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, and Alzheimer’s disease. The expression of phase II detoxification enzymes is governed by the cis-acting regulatory element known as antioxidant response element (ARE). The transcription factor Nrf2 binds to ARE thereby transcribing multitude of antioxidant genes. Keap1, a culin 3-based E3 ligase that targets Nrf2 for degradation, sequesters Nrf2 in cytoplasm. Disruption of Keap1-Nrf2 interaction or genetic overexpression of Nrf2 can increase the endogenous antioxidant capacity of the brain thereby rendering protection against oxidative stress in neurodegenerative disorders. This review primarily focuses on targeted Nrf2 overexpression as a promising therapeutic strategy for the treatment of neurodegenerative disorders. PMID:22742419

  7. Is neurodegenerative disease a long-latency response to early-life genotoxin exposure?

    PubMed

    Kisby, Glen E; Spencer, Peter S

    2011-10-01

    Western Pacific amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and parkinsonism-dementia complex, a disappearing neurodegenerative disease linked to use of the neurotoxic cycad plant for food and/or medicine, is intensively studied because the neuropathology (tauopathy) is similar to that of Alzheimer's disease. Cycads contain neurotoxic and genotoxic principles, notably cycasin and methylazoxymethanol, the latter sharing chemical relations with nitrosamines, which are derived from nitrates and nitrites in preserved meats and fertilizers, and also used in the rubber and leather industries. This review includes new data that influence understanding of the neurobiological actions of cycad and related genotoxins and the putative mechanisms by which they might trigger neurodegenerative disease.

  8. Is neurodegenerative disease a long-latency response to early-life genotoxin exposure?

    PubMed

    Kisby, Glen E; Spencer, Peter S

    2011-10-01

    Western Pacific amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and parkinsonism-dementia complex, a disappearing neurodegenerative disease linked to use of the neurotoxic cycad plant for food and/or medicine, is intensively studied because the neuropathology (tauopathy) is similar to that of Alzheimer's disease. Cycads contain neurotoxic and genotoxic principles, notably cycasin and methylazoxymethanol, the latter sharing chemical relations with nitrosamines, which are derived from nitrates and nitrites in preserved meats and fertilizers, and also used in the rubber and leather industries. This review includes new data that influence understanding of the neurobiological actions of cycad and related genotoxins and the putative mechanisms by which they might trigger neurodegenerative disease. PMID:22073019

  9. Neurodegenerative Models in Drosophila: Polyglutamine Disorders, Parkinson Disease, and Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis

    PubMed Central

    Ambegaokar, Surendra S.; Roy, Bidisha; Jackson, George R.

    2010-01-01

    Neurodegenerative diseases encompass a large group of neurological disorders. Clinical symptoms can include memory loss, cognitive impairment, loss of movement or loss of control of movement, and loss of sensation. Symptoms are typically adult onset (although severe cases can occur in adolescents) and are reflective of neuronal and glial cell loss in the central nervous system. Neurodegenerative diseases also are considered progressive, with increased severity of symptoms over time, also reflective of increased neuronal cell death. However, various neurodegenerative diseases differentially affect certain brain regions or neuronal or glial cell types. As an example, Alzheimer disease (AD) primarily affects the temporal lobe, whereas neuronal loss in Parkinson disease (PD) is largely (although not exclusively) confined to the nigrostriatal system. Neuronal loss is almost invariably accompanied by abnormal insoluble aggregates, either intra- or extracellular. Thus, neurodegenerative diseases are categorized by (a) the composite of clinical symptoms, (b) the brain regions or types of brain cells primarily affected, and (c) the types of protein aggregates found in the brain. Here we review the methods by which Drosophila melanogaster has been used to model aspects of polyglutamine diseases, Parkinson disease, and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and key insights into that have been gained from these models; Alzheimer disease and the tauopathies are covered elsewhere in this special issue. PMID:20561920

  10. Role and Treatment of Mitochondrial DNA-Related Mitochondrial Dysfunction in Sporadic Neurodegenerative Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Swerdlow, Russell H.

    2012-01-01

    Several sporadic neurodegenerative diseases display phenomena that directly or indirectly relate to mitochondrial function. Data suggesting altered mitochondrial function in these diseases could arise from mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) are reviewed. Approaches for manipulating mitochondrial function and minimizing the downstream consequences of mitochondrial dysfunction are discussed. PMID:21902672

  11. Interferon Gamma: Influence on Neural Stem Cell Function in Neurodegenerative and Neuroinflammatory Disease

    PubMed Central

    Kulkarni, Apurva; Ganesan, Priya; O’Donnell, Lauren A.

    2016-01-01

    Interferon-gamma (IFNγ), a pleiotropic cytokine, is expressed in diverse neurodegenerative and neuroinflammatory conditions. Its protective mechanisms are well documented during viral infections in the brain, where IFNγ mediates non-cytolytic viral control in infected neurons. However, IFNγ also plays both protective and pathological roles in other central nervous system (CNS) diseases. Of the many neural cells that respond to IFNγ, neural stem/progenitor cells (NSPCs), the only pluripotent cells in the developing and adult brain, are often altered during CNS insults. Recent studies highlight the complex effects of IFNγ on NSPC activity in neurodegenerative diseases. However, the mechanisms that mediate these effects, and the eventual outcomes for the host, are still being explored. Here, we review the effects of IFNγ on NSPC activity during different pathological insults. An improved understanding of the role of IFNγ would provide insight into the impact of immune responses on the progression and resolution of neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:27774000

  12. Age-related iron deposition in the basal ganglia of controls and Alzheimer disease patients quantified using susceptibility weighted imaging.

    PubMed

    Wang, Dan; Li, Yan-Ying; Luo, Jian-Hua; Li, Yue-Hua

    2014-01-01

    This study aimed to investigate age-related iron deposition changes in healthy subjects and Alzheimer disease patients using susceptibility weighted imaging. The study recruited 182 people, including 143 healthy volunteers and 39 Alzheimer disease patients. All underwent conventional magnetic resonance imaging and susceptibility weighted imaging sequences. The groups were divided according to age. Phase images were used to investigate iron deposition in the bilateral head of the caudate nucleus, globus pallidus and putamen, and the angle radian value was calculated. We hypothesized that age-related iron deposition changes may be different between Alzheimer disease patients and controls of the same age, and that susceptibility weighted imaging would be a more sensitive method of iron deposition quantification. The results revealed that iron deposition in the globus pallidus increased with age, up to 40 years. In the head of the caudate nucleus, iron deposition peaked at 60 years. There was a general increasing trend with age in the putamen, up to 50-70 years old. There was significant difference between the control and Alzheimer disease groups in the bilateral globus pallidus in both the 60-70 and 70-80 year old group comparisons. In conclusion, iron deposition increased with age in the globus pallidus, the head of the caudate nucleus and putamen, reaching a plateau at different ages. Furthermore, comparisons between the control and Alzheimer disease group revealed that iron deposition changes were more easily detected in the globus pallidus.

  13. Friends or Foes: Matrix Metalloproteinases and Their Multifaceted Roles in Neurodegenerative Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Brkic, Marjana; Balusu, Sriram; Libert, Claude; Vandenbroucke, Roosmarijn E.

    2015-01-01

    Neurodegeneration is a chronic progressive loss of neuronal cells leading to deterioration of central nervous system (CNS) functionality. It has been shown that neuroinflammation precedes neurodegeneration in various neurodegenerative diseases. Matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs), a protein family of zinc-containing endopeptidases, are essential in (neuro)inflammation and might be involved in neurodegeneration. Although MMPs are indispensable for physiological development and functioning of the organism, they are often referred to as double-edged swords due to their ability to also inflict substantial damage in various pathological conditions. MMP activity is strictly controlled, and its dysregulation leads to a variety of pathologies. Investigation of their potential use as therapeutic targets requires a better understanding of their contributions to the development of neurodegenerative diseases. Here, we review MMPs and their roles in neurodegenerative diseases: Alzheimer's disease (AD), Parkinson's disease (PD), amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), Huntington's disease (HD), and multiple sclerosis (MS). We also discuss MMP inhibition as a possible therapeutic strategy to treat neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:26538832

  14. Supplemental substances derived from foods as adjunctive therapeutic agents for treatment of neurodegenerative diseases and disorders.

    PubMed

    Bigford, Gregory E; Del Rossi, Gianluca

    2014-07-01

    Neurodegenerative disorders and diseases (NDDs) that are either chronically acquired or triggered by a singular detrimental event are a rapidly growing cause of disability and/or death. In recent times, there have been major advancements in our understanding of various neurodegenerative disease states that have revealed common pathologic features or mechanisms. The many mechanistic parallels discovered between various neurodegenerative diseases suggest that a single therapeutic approach may be used to treat multiple disease conditions. Of late, natural compounds and supplemental substances have become an increasingly attractive option to treat NDDs because there is growing evidence that these nutritional constituents have potential adjunctive therapeutic effects (be it protective or restorative) on various neurodegenerative diseases. Here we review relevant experimental and clinical data on supplemental substances (i.e., curcuminoids, rosmarinic acid, resveratrol, acetyl-L-carnitine, and ω-3 (n-3) polyunsaturated fatty acids) that have demonstrated encouraging therapeutic effects on chronic diseases, such as Alzheimer's disease and neurodegeneration resulting from acute adverse events, such as traumatic brain injury. PMID:25022989

  15. Functional Genomics Approach for Identification of Molecular Processes Underlying Neurodegenerative Disorders in Prion Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Basu, Urmila; Guan, Le Luo; Moore, Stephen S

    2012-01-01

    Prion diseases or transmissible spongiform encephalopathies (TSEs) are infectious neurodegenerative disorders leading to death. These include Cresutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD), familial, sporadic and variant CJD and kuru in humans; and animal TSEs include scrapie in sheep, bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) in cattle, chronic wasting disease (CWD) of mule deer and elk, and transmissible mink encephalopathy. All these TSEs share common pathological features such as accumulation of mis-folded prion proteins in the central nervous system leading to cellular dysfunction and cell death. It is important to characterize the molecular pathways and events leading to prion induced neurodegeneration. Here we discuss the impact of the functional genomics approaches including microarrays, subtractive hybridization and microRNA profiling in elucidating transcriptional cascades at different stages of disease. Many of these transcriptional changes have been observed in multiple neurodegenerative diseases which may aid in identification of biomarkers for disease. A comprehensive characterization of expression profiles implicated in neurodegenerative disorders will undoubtedly advance our understanding on neuropathology and dysfunction during prion disease and other neurodegenerative disorders. We also present an outlook on the future work which may focus on analysis of structural genetic variation, genome and transcriptome sequencing using next generation sequencing with an integrated approach on animal and human TSE related studies. PMID:23372423

  16. Isoprostanes and neuroprostanes as biomarkers of oxidative stress in neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Miller, Elżbieta; Morel, Agnieszka; Saso, Luciano; Saluk, Joanna

    2014-01-01

    Accumulating data shows that oxidative stress plays a crucial role in neurodegenerative disorders. The literature data indicate that in vivo or postmortem cerebrospinal fluid and brain tissue levels of F2-isoprostanes (F2-IsoPs) especially F4-neuroprotanes (F4-NPs) are significantly increased in some neurodegenerative diseases: multiple sclerosis, Alzheimer's disease, Huntington's disease, and Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease. Central nervous system is the most metabolically active organ of the body characterized by high requirement for oxygen and relatively low antioxidative activity, what makes neurons and glia highly susceptible to destruction by reactive oxygen/nitrogen species and neurodegeneration. The discovery of F2-IsoPs and F4-NPs as markers of lipid peroxidation caused by the free radicals has opened up new areas of investigation regarding the role of oxidative stress in the pathogenesis of human neurodegenerative diseases. This review focuses on the relationship between F2-IsoPs and F4-NPs as biomarkers of oxidative stress and neurodegenerative diseases. We summarize the knowledge of these novel biomarkers of oxidative stress and the advantages of monitoring their formation to better define the involvement of oxidative stress in neurological diseases.

  17. A mutation in APP protects against Alzheimer's disease and age-related cognitive decline.

    PubMed

    Jonsson, Thorlakur; Atwal, Jasvinder K; Steinberg, Stacy; Snaedal, Jon; Jonsson, Palmi V; Bjornsson, Sigurbjorn; Stefansson, Hreinn; Sulem, Patrick; Gudbjartsson, Daniel; Maloney, Janice; Hoyte, Kwame; Gustafson, Amy; Liu, Yichin; Lu, Yanmei; Bhangale, Tushar; Graham, Robert R; Huttenlocher, Johanna; Bjornsdottir, Gyda; Andreassen, Ole A; Jönsson, Erik G; Palotie, Aarno; Behrens, Timothy W; Magnusson, Olafur T; Kong, Augustine; Thorsteinsdottir, Unnur; Watts, Ryan J; Stefansson, Kari

    2012-08-01

    The prevalence of dementia in the Western world in people over the age of 60 has been estimated to be greater than 5%, about two-thirds of which are due to Alzheimer's disease. The age-specific prevalence of Alzheimer's disease nearly doubles every 5 years after age 65, leading to a prevalence of greater than 25% in those over the age of 90 (ref. 3). Here, to search for low-frequency variants in the amyloid-β precursor protein (APP) gene with a significant effect on the risk of Alzheimer's disease, we studied coding variants in APP in a set of whole-genome sequence data from 1,795 Icelanders. We found a coding mutation (A673T) in the APP gene that protects against Alzheimer's disease and cognitive decline in the elderly without Alzheimer's disease. This substitution is adjacent to the aspartyl protease β-site in APP, and results in an approximately 40% reduction in the formation of amyloidogenic peptides in vitro. The strong protective effect of the A673T substitution against Alzheimer's disease provides proof of principle for the hypothesis that reducing the β-cleavage of APP may protect against the disease. Furthermore, as the A673T allele also protects against cognitive decline in the elderly without Alzheimer's disease, the two may be mediated through the same or similar mechanisms.

  18. Lack of miRNA Misregulation at Early Pathological Stages in Drosophila Neurodegenerative Disease Models

    PubMed Central

    Reinhardt, Anita; Feuillette, Sébastien; Cassar, Marlène; Callens, Céline; Thomassin, Hélène; Birman, Serge; Lecourtois, Magalie; Antoniewski, Christophe; Tricoire, Hervé

    2012-01-01

    Late onset neurodegenerative diseases represent a major public health concern as the population in many countries ages. Both frequent diseases such as Alzheimer disease (AD, 14% incidence for 80–84 year-old Europeans) or Parkinson disease (PD, 1.4% prevalence for >55 years old) share, with other low-incidence neurodegenerative pathologies such as spinocerebellar ataxias (SCAs, 0.01% prevalence) and frontotemporal lobar degeneration (FTLD, 0.02% prevalence), a lack of efficient treatment in spite of important research efforts. Besides significant progress, studies with animal models have revealed unexpected complexities in the degenerative process, emphasizing a need to better understand the underlying pathological mechanisms. Recently, microRNAs (miRNAs), a class of small regulatory non-coding RNAs, have been implicated in some neurodegenerative diseases. The current data supporting a role of miRNAs in PD, tauopathies, dominant ataxias, and FTLD will first be discussed to emphasize the different levels of the pathological processes which may be affected by miRNAs. To investigate a potential involvement of miRNA dysregulation in the early stages of these neurodegenerative diseases we have used Drosophila models for seven diseases (PD, 3 FTLD, 3 dominant ataxias) that recapitulate many features of the human diseases. We performed deep sequencing of head small RNAs after 3 days of pathological protein expression in the fly head neurons. We found no evidence for a statistically significant difference in miRNA expression in this early stage of the pathological process. In addition, we could not identify small non-coding CAG repeat RNAs (sCAG) in polyQ disease models. Thus our data suggest that transcriptional deregulation of miRNAs or sCAG is unlikely to play a significant role in the initial stages of neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:23115562

  19. HDAC6 as a target for neurodegenerative diseases: what makes it different from the other HDACs?

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitors have been demonstrated to be beneficial in animal models of neurodegenerative diseases. Such results were mainly associated with the epigenetic modulation caused by HDACs, especially those from class I, via chromatin deacetylation. However, other mechanisms may contribute to the neuroprotective effect of HDAC inhibitors, since each HDAC may present distinct specific functions within the neurodegenerative cascades. Such an example is HDAC6 for which the role in neurodegeneration has been partially elucidated so far. The strategy to be adopted in promising therapeutics targeting HDAC6 is still controversial. Specific inhibitors exert neuroprotection by increasing the acetylation levels of α-tubulin with subsequent improvement of the axonal transport, which is usually impaired in neurodegenerative disorders. On the other hand, an induction of HDAC6 would theoretically contribute to the degradation of protein aggregates which characterize various neurodegenerative disorders, including Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and Hutington’s diseases. This review describes the specific role of HDAC6 compared to the other HDACs in the context of neurodegeneration, by collecting in silico, in vitro and in vivo results regarding the inhibition and/or knockdown of HDAC6 and other HDACs. Moreover, structure, function, subcellular localization, as well as the level of HDAC6 expression within brain regions are reviewed and compared to the other HDAC isoforms. In various neurodegenerative diseases, the mechanisms underlying HDAC6 interaction with other proteins seem to be a promising approach in understanding the modulation of HDAC6 activity. PMID:23356410

  20. Calorie restriction: A new therapeutic intervention for age-related dry eye disease in rats

    SciTech Connect

    Kawashima, Motoko; Kawakita, Tetsuya; Okada, Naoko; Ogawa, Yoko; Murat, Dogru; Nakamura, Shigeru; Nakashima, Hideo; Shimmura, Shigeto; Shinmura, Ken; Tsubota, Kazuo

    2010-07-09

    A decrease in lacrimal gland secretory function is closely related to aging and leads to an increased prevalence of dry eye syndrome. Since calorie restriction (CR) is considered to prevent functional decline of various organs due to aging, we hypothesized that CR could prevent age-related lacrimal dysfunction. Six-month-old male Fischer 344 rats were randomly divided into ad libitum (AL) and CR (-35%) groups. After 6 months of CR, tear function was examined under conscious state. After euthanasia, lacrimal glands were subjected to histological examination, tear protein secretion stimulation test with Carbachol, and assessment of oxidative stress with 8-hydroxy-2 deoxyguanosine (8-OHdG) and 4-hydroxynonenal (HNE) antibodies. CR significantly improved tear volume and tended to increase tear protein secretion volume after stimulation with Carbachol compared to AL. The acinar unit density was significantly higher in the CR rats compared to AL rats. Lacrimal glands in the CR rats showed a lesser degree of interstitial fibrosis. CR reduced the concentration of 8-OHdG and the extent of staining with HNE in the lacrimal gland, compared to AL. Furthermore, our electron microscopic observations showed that mitochondrial structure of the lacrimal gland obtained from the middle-aged CR rats was preserved in comparison to the AL rats. Collectively, these results demonstrate for the first time that CR may attenuate oxidative stress related damage in the lacrimal gland with preservation of lacrimal gland functions. Although molecular mechanism(s) by which CR maintains lacrimal gland function remains to be resolved, CR might provide a novel therapeutic strategy for treating dry eye syndrome.

  1. Avocado as a Major Dietary Source of Antioxidants and Its Preventive Role in Neurodegenerative Diseases.

    PubMed

    Ameer, Kalandar

    2016-01-01

    Avocados have a high content of phytochemicals especially antioxidants with potential neuroprotective effect. Aging is the major risk factor for neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases. A large body of evidence indicates that oxidative stress is involved in the pathophysiology of these diseases. Oxidative stress can induce neuronal damages and modulate intracellular signaling, ultimately leading to neuronal death by apoptosis or necrosis. There is evidence for increased oxidative damage to macromolecules in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, Huntington's disease, Parkinson's disease, and Alzheimer's disease. Thus, antioxidants have been used for their effectiveness in reducing these deleterious effects and neuronal death in many in vitro and in vivo studies. The critical review results indicate that compounds in avocado are unique antioxidants, preferentially suppressing radical generation, and thus may be promising as effective neuropreventive agents. The diverse array of bioactive nutrients present in avocado plays a pivotal role in the prevention and cure of various neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:27651262

  2. Monograph series on aging-related diseases: VIII. Non-insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus (NIDDM)

    PubMed

    Barceló, A

    1996-01-01

    Diabetes mellitus is a chronic metabolic disease characterized by hyperglycemia and by disturbances of carbohydrate, fat and protein metabolism. Diabetes mellitus is associated with absolute or relative deficiency in the secretion and/or action of the hormone insulin.

  3. Can neurodegenerative disease be defined by four 'primary determinants': anatomy, cells, molecules, and morphology?

    PubMed

    Armstrong, R A

    2016-01-01

    Traditional methods of describing and classifying neurodegenerative disease are based on the clinico-pathological concept supported by molecular pathological studies and defined by 'consensus criteria'. Disease heterogeneity, overlap between disorders, and the presence of multiple co-pathologies, however, have questioned the validity and status of many traditional disorders. If cases of neurodegenerative disease are not easily classifiable into distinct entities, but more continuously distributed, then a new descriptive framework may be required. This review proposes that there are four key neuropathological features of neurodegenerative disease (the 'primary determinants') that could be used to provide such a framework, viz., the anatomical pathways affected by the disease ('anatomy'), the cell populations affected ('cells'), the molecular pathology of 'signature' pathological lesions ('molecules'), and the morphological types of neurodegeneration ('morphology'). This review first discusses the limitations of existing classificatory systems and second provides evidence that the four primary determinants could be used as axes to define all cases of neurodegenerative disease. To illustrate the methodology, the primary determinants were applied to the study of a group of closely related tauopathy cases and to heterogeneity within frontotemporal lobar degeneration with TDP-43 proteinopathy (FTLD-TDP). PMID:27543767

  4. Drug discovery of neurodegenerative disease through network pharmacology approach in herbs.

    PubMed

    Ke, Zhipeng; Zhang, Xinzhuang; Cao, Zeyu; Ding, Yue; Li, Na; Cao, Liang; Wang, Tuanjie; Zhang, Chenfeng; Ding, Gang; Wang, Zhenzhong; Xu, Xiaojie; Xiao, Wei

    2016-03-01

    Neurodegenerative diseases, referring to as the progressive loss of structure and function of neurons, constitute one of the major challenges of modern medicine. Traditional Chinese herbs have been used as a major preventive and therapeutic strategy against disease for thousands years. The numerous species of medicinal herbs and Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) compound formulas in nervous system disease therapy make it a large chemical resource library for drug discovery. In this work, we collected 7362 kinds of herbs and 58,147 Traditional Chinese medicinal compounds (Tcmcs). The predicted active compounds in herbs have good oral bioavailability and central nervous system (CNS) permeability. The molecular docking and network analysis were employed to analyze the effects of herbs on neurodegenerative diseases. In order to evaluate the predicted efficacy of herbs, automated text mining was utilized to exhaustively search in PubMed by some related keywords. After that, receiver operator characteristic (ROC) curves was used to estimate the accuracy of predictions. Our study suggested that most herbs were distributed in family of Asteraceae, Fabaceae, Lamiaceae and Apocynaceae. The predictive model yielded good sensitivity and specificity with the AUC values above 0.800. At last, 504 kinds of herbs were obtained by using the optimal cutoff values in ROC curves. These 504 herbs would be the most potential herb resources for neurodegenerative diseases treatment. This study would give us an opportunity to use these herbs as a chemical resource library for drug discovery of anti-neurodegenerative disease.

  5. Age-related differences in celiac disease: Specific characteristics of adult presentation

    PubMed Central

    Vivas, Santiago; Vaquero, Luis; Rodríguez-Martín, Laura; Caminero, Alberto

    2015-01-01

    Celiac disease may appear both in early childhood and in elderly subjects. Current knowledge of the disease has revealed some differences associated to the age of presentation. Furthermore, monitoring and prognosis of celiac subjects can vary depending on the pediatric or adult stage. The main objective of this review is to provide guidance for the adult diagnostic and follow-up processes, which must be tailored specifically for adults and be different from pediatric patients. PMID:26558154

  6. Age-related Defects in Ocular and Nasal Mucosal Immune System and the Immunopathology of Dry Eye Disease

    PubMed Central

    Farid, Marjan; Agrawal, Anshu; Fremgen, Daniel; Tao, Jeremiah; Chuyi, He; Nesburn, Anthony B.; BenMohamed, Lbachir

    2014-01-01

    Dry eye disease (DED) is a prevalent public health concern that affects up to 30% of adults and is particularly chronic and severe in the elderly. Two interconnected mechanisms cause DED: (1) an age-related dysfunction of lacrimal and meibomian glands, which leads to decreased tear production and/or an increase in tear evaporation; and (2) an age-related uncontrolled inflammation of the surface of the eye triggered by yet-to-be-determined internal immunopathological mechanisms, independent of tear deficiency and evaporation. In this review we summarize current knowledge on animal models that mimic both the severity and chronicity of inflammatory DED and that have been reliably used to provide insights into the immunopathological mechanisms of DED, and we provide an overview of the opportunities and limitations of the rabbit model in investigating the role of both ocular and nasal mucosal immune systems in the immunopathology of inflammatory DED and in testing novel immunotherapies aimed at delaying or reversing the uncontrolled age-related inflammatory DED. PMID:25535823

  7. Age-related Defects in Ocular and Nasal Mucosal Immune System and the Immunopathology of Dry Eye Disease.

    PubMed

    Farid, Marjan; Agrawal, Anshu; Fremgen, Daniel; Tao, Jeremiah; Chuyi, He; Nesburn, Anthony B; BenMohamed, Lbachir

    2016-06-01

    Dry eye disease (DED) is a prevalent public health concern that affects up to 30% of adults and is particularly chronic and severe in the elderly. Two interconnected mechanisms cause DED: (1) an age-related dysfunction of lacrimal and meibomian glands, which leads to decreased tear production and/or an increase in tear evaporation; and (2) an age-related uncontrolled inflammation of the surface of the eye triggered by yet-to-be-determined internal immunopathological mechanisms, independent of tear deficiency and evaporation. In this review we summarize current knowledge on animal models that mimic both the severity and chronicity of inflammatory DED and that have been reliably used to provide insights into the immunopathological mechanisms of DED, and we provide an overview of the opportunities and limitations of the rabbit model in investigating the role of both ocular and nasal mucosal immune systems in the immunopathology of inflammatory DED and in testing novel immunotherapies aimed at delaying or reversing the uncontrolled age-related inflammatory DED.

  8. Target- and Mechanism-Based Therapeutics for Neurodegenerative Diseases: Strength in Numbers

    PubMed Central

    Trippier, Paul C.; Labby, Kristin Jansen; Hawker, Dustin D.; Mataka, Jan J.; Silverman, Richard B.

    2013-01-01

    The development of new therapeutics for the treatment of neurodegenerative pathophysiologies currently stands at a crossroads. This presents an opportunity to transition future drug discovery efforts to target disease modification, an area in which much still remains unknown. In this Perspective we examine recent progress in the areas of neurodegenerative drug discovery, focusing on some of the most common targets and mechanisms; N-methyl-d-aspartic acid (NMDA) receptors, voltage gated calcium channels (VGCCs), neuronal nitric oxide synthase (nNOS), oxidative stress from reactive oxygen species, and protein aggregation. These represent the key players identified in neurodegeneration and are part of a complex, intertwined signaling cascade. The synergistic delivery of two or more compounds directed against these targets, along with the design of small molecules with multiple modes of action should be explored in pursuit of more effective clinical treatments for neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:23458846

  9. Parkinson's disease accelerates age-related decline in haptic perception by altering somatosensory integration.

    PubMed

    Konczak, Jürgen; Sciutti, Alessandra; Avanzino, Laura; Squeri, Valentina; Gori, Monica; Masia, Lorenzo; Abbruzzese, Giovanni; Sandini, Giulio

    2012-11-01

    This study investigated how Parkinson's disease alters haptic perception and the underlying mechanisms of somatosensory and sensorimotor integration. Changes in haptic sensitivity and acuity (the abilities to detect and to discriminate between haptic stimuli) due to Parkinson's disease were systematically quantified and contrasted to the performance of healthy older and young adults. Using a robotic force environment, virtual contours of various curvatures were presented. Participants explored these contours with their hands and indicated verbally whether they could detect or discriminate between two contours. To understand what aspects of sensory or sensorimotor integration are altered by ageing and disease, we manipulated the sensorimotor aspect of the task: the robot either guided the hand along the contour or the participant actively moved the hand. Active exploration relies on multimodal sensory and sensorimotor integration, while passive guidance only requires sensory integration of proprioceptive and tactile information. The main findings of the study are as follows: first, a decline in haptic precision can already be observed in adults before the age of 70 years. Parkinson's disease may lead to an additional decrease in haptic sensitivity well beyond the levels typically seen in middle-aged and older adults. Second, the haptic deficit in Parkinson's disease is general in nature. It becomes manifest as a decrease in sensitivity and acuity (i.e. a smaller perceivable range and a diminished ability to discriminate between two perceivable haptic stimuli). Third, thresholds during both active and passive exploration are elevated, but not significantly different from each other. That is, active exploration did not enhance the haptic deficit when compared to passive hand motion. This implies that Parkinson's disease affects early stages of somatosensory integration that ultimately have an impact on processes of sensorimotor integration. Our results suggest that

  10. Pathophysiological Role of Neuroinflammation in Neurodegenerative Diseases and Psychiatric Disorders

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Brain diseases and disorders such as Alzheimer disease, Parkinson disease, depression, schizophrenia, autism, and addiction lead to reduced quality of daily life through abnormal thoughts, perceptions, emotional states, and behavior. While the underlying mechanisms remain poorly understood, human and animal studies have supported a role of neuroinflammation in the etiology of these diseases. In the central nervous system, an increased inflammatory response is capable of activating microglial cells, leading to the release of pro-inflammatory cytokines including interleukin (IL)-1β, IL-6, and tumor necrosis factor-α. In turn, the pro-inflammatory cytokines aggravate and propagate neuroinflammation, degenerating healthy neurons and impairing brain functions. Therefore, activated microglia may play a key role in neuroinflammatory processes contributing to the pathogenesis of psychiatric disorders and neurodegeneration. PMID:27230456

  11. Operationalizing diagnostic criteria for Alzheimer’s disease and other age-related cognitive impairment—Part 1*

    PubMed Central

    Mayeux, Richard; Reitz, Christiane; Brickman, Adam M.; Haan, Mary N.; Manly, Jennifer J.; Glymour, M. Maria; Weiss, Christopher C.; Yaffe, Kristine; Middleton, Laura; Hendrie, Hugh C.; Warren, Lauren H.; Hayden, Kathleen M.; Welsh-Bohmer, Kathleen A.; Breitner, John C. S.; Morris, John C.

    2011-01-01

    Population studies strive to determine the prevalence of Alzheimer dementia but prevalence estimates vary widely. The challenges faced by several noted population studies for Alzheimer dementia in operationalizing current clinical diagnostic criteria for Alzheimer’s disease (AD) are reviewed. Differences in case ascertainment, methodological biases, cultural and educational influences on test performance, inclusion of special populations such as underrepresented minorities and the oldest old, and detection of the earliest symptomatic stages of underlying AD are considered. Classification of Alzheimer dementia may be improved by the incorporation of biomarkers for AD if the sensitivity, specificity, and predictive value of the biomarkers are established and if they are appropriate for epidemiological studies as may occur should a plasma biomarker be developed. Biomarkers for AD also could facilitate studies of the interactions of various forms of neurodegenerative disorders with cerebrovascular disease, resulting in “mixed dementia”. PMID:21255741

  12. Content analysis of neurodegenerative and mental diseases social groups.

    PubMed

    Martínez-Pérez, Borja; de la Torre-Díez, Isabel; Bargiela-Flórez, Beatriz; López-Coronado, Miguel; Rodrigues, Joel J P C

    2015-12-01

    This article aims to characterize the different types of Facebook and Twitter groups for different mental diseases, their purposes, and their functions. We focused the search on depressive disorders, dementia, and Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases and examined the Facebook (www.facebook.com) and Twitter (www.twitter.com) groups. We used four assessment criteria: (1) purpose, (2) type of creator, (3) telehealth content, and (4) free-text responses in surveys and interviews. We observed a total of 357 Parkinson groups, 325 dementia groups, 853 Alzheimer groups, and 1127 depression groups on Facebook and Twitter. Moreover, we analyze the responses provided by different users. The survey and interview responses showed that many people were interested in using social networks to support and help in the fight against these diseases. The results indicate that social networks are acceptable by users in terms of simplicity and utility. People use them for finding support, information, self-help, advocacy and awareness, and for collecting funds.

  13. Modulatory Effects of Dietary Amino Acids on Neurodegenerative Diseases.

    PubMed

    Rajagopal, Senthilkumar; Sangam, Supraj Raja; Singh, Shubham; Joginapally, Venkateswara Rao

    2016-01-01

    Proteins are playing a vital role in maintaining the cellular integrity and function, as well as for brain cells. Protein intake and supplementation of individual amino acids can affect the brain functioning and mental health, and many of the neurotransmitters in the brain are made from amino acids. The amino acid supplementation has been found to reduce symptoms, as they are converted into neurotransmitters which in turn extenuate the mental disorders. The biosynthesis of amino acids in the brain is regulated by the concentration of amino acids in plasma. The brain diseases such as depression, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), and Alzheimer's (AD), Parkinson's (PD), and Huntington's diseases (HD) are the most common mental disorders that are currently widespread in numerous countries. The intricate biochemical and molecular machinery contributing to the neurological disorders is still unknown, and in this chapter, we revealed the involvement of dietary amino acids on neurological diseases.

  14. Modulatory Effects of Dietary Amino Acids on Neurodegenerative Diseases.

    PubMed

    Rajagopal, Senthilkumar; Sangam, Supraj Raja; Singh, Shubham; Joginapally, Venkateswara Rao

    2016-01-01

    Proteins are playing a vital role in maintaining the cellular integrity and function, as well as for brain cells. Protein intake and supplementation of individual amino acids can affect the brain functioning and mental health, and many of the neurotransmitters in the brain are made from amino acids. The amino acid supplementation has been found to reduce symptoms, as they are converted into neurotransmitters which in turn extenuate the mental disorders. The biosynthesis of amino acids in the brain is regulated by the concentration of amino acids in plasma. The brain diseases such as depression, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), and Alzheimer's (AD), Parkinson's (PD), and Huntington's diseases (HD) are the most common mental disorders that are currently widespread in numerous countries. The intricate biochemical and molecular machinery contributing to the neurological disorders is still unknown, and in this chapter, we revealed the involvement of dietary amino acids on neurological diseases. PMID:27651266

  15. Stem cells and neurodegenerative diseases: where is it all going?

    PubMed

    Barker, Roger A

    2012-11-01

    Over the last few years there have been a number of major breakthroughs in the development of stem cells for diseases of the CNS. One of these has been in the ability to reprogram adult somatic cells to a more pluripotent state as well as directly to neurons and, by so doing, use patient-derived cells to study disease. In addition, the capacity to engineer embryonic stem cells to defined neuronal fates in the absence of proliferative contaminant cells is now feasible, which opens up the possibility of using these cells for cell transplantation. In this review, we will discuss how these developments have come about, particularly in the context of Parkinson's disease, and what this means for the future of this whole field over the next few years.

  16. Redox chemistry of green tea polyphenols: therapeutic benefits in neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Hügel, H M; Jackson, N

    2012-05-01

    Evidence for the medicinal and health benefits of polyphenols in green tea for the prevention of chronic diseases such as heart disease, various types of cancer and neurodegenerative diseases is advancing. Their in vivo effectiveness and molecular mechanisms are difficult to elucidate and remain a challenging task. We review the redox responsiveness and amyloid protein perturbation biophysical properties of the major green tea polyphenol constituent (-)- epigallocatechin-3-gallate [EGCG].

  17. The microbiota and microbiome in aging: potential implications in health and age-related diseases.

    PubMed

    Zapata, Heidi J; Quagliarello, Vincent J

    2015-04-01

    Advances in bacterial deoxyribonucleic acid sequencing allow for characterization of the human commensal bacterial community (microbiota) and its corresponding genome (microbiome). Surveys of healthy adults reveal that a signature composite of bacteria characterizes each unique body habitat (e.g., gut, skin, oral cavity, vagina). A myriad of clinical changes, including a basal proinflammatory state (inflamm-aging), that directly interface with the microbiota of older adults and enhance susceptibility to disease accompany aging. Studies in older adults demonstrate that the gut microbiota correlates with diet, location of residence (e.g., community dwelling, long-term care settings), and basal level of inflammation. Links exist between the microbiota and a variety of clinical problems plaguing older adults, including physical frailty, Clostridium difficile colitis, vulvovaginal atrophy, colorectal carcinoma, and atherosclerotic disease. Manipulation of the microbiota and microbiome of older adults holds promise as an innovative strategy to influence the development of comorbidities associated with aging.

  18. Preface: The aging eye: normal changes, age-related diseases, and sight-saving approaches.

    PubMed

    Chader, Gerald J; Taylor, Allen

    2013-12-13

    This volume presents articles based on a workshop held June 14 to 16, 2013 in Rancho Palos Verde, CA sponsored by the Ocular Research Symposia Foundation (ORSF). The mission of the ORSF is to focus attention on unmet needs and current research opportunities in eye research with the objective of accelerating translation of research findings to effective clinical care. In this workshop, the subject of the "The Aging Eye" was addressed, including the prevalence of eye diseases in aging and the economic burden imposed by these diseases. New research work was highlighted on the genetics, biology, biochemistry, neurochemistry, and the impact of nutrition and the environment on function in the older eye. By identifying "low-hanging fruit" (i.e., the best opportunities for successful transition of laboratory research for the prevention of and new treatments and cures for ocular diseases), we seek to spur funding at both the basic research and clinical levels, resulting in sight-saving and sight-restoration measures in the near future.

  19. Drugs, nutrients, and phytoactive principles improving the health span of rodent models of human age-related diseases.

    PubMed

    Lebel, Michel; Picard, Frédéric; Ferland, Guylaine; Gaudreau, Pierrette

    2012-02-01

    Rodents are often the species of choice to examine the effect of drugs on survival and on the progression of specific diseased tissues. This statement is also true for research laboratories working in the field of nutrition and aging. In addition to diets that can reduce the life expectancy of rodents, such as diabetogenic or high-fat diets, genetically modified rodents exhibiting different accelerated age-associated diseases also provide important biologic tools to decipher the impact of drugs, nutrients, or phytoactive compounds on their health and life span. This review covers some of the chemicals believed to decelerate the appearance of age-related diseases in different rodent models. Such chemicals include antioxidants, anti-inflammatory molecules, modulators of metabolic sensors, calorie restriction mimetics, and vegetal polyphenolic compounds that affect mitochondrial functions, cellular proliferation or differentiation as well as cell functionality.

  20. Central nervous system endothelium in neuroinflammatory, neuroinfectious, and neurodegenerative disease.

    PubMed

    Andjelkovic, A V; Pachter, J S

    1998-02-15

    Accumulating evidence points toward a significant role for the microvascular endothelium in the pathogenesis of several neurologic conditions. This review highlights those biochemical, anatomical, and physiological features of the endothelium thought to be dysfunctional in these disease states, and elaborates on novel treatment modalities that target the endothelium. PMID:9514196

  1. Menkes Kinky Hair Syndrome: A Rare Neurodegenerative Disease

    PubMed Central

    Gandhi, Rozil; Kakkar, Ritu; Rajan, Sajeev; Bhangale, Rashmi; Desai, Shrinivas

    2012-01-01

    Menkes kinky hair disease is a rare X-linked recessive disease nearly exclusively affecting males who present at 2-3 months of age due to abnormal functioning of copper-dependent enzymes due to deficiency of copper. Here, we describe a completely worked-up case of a 4-month-old male infant with very typical history and radiological features confirmed by biochemical and trichoanalysis. The initially seen asymmetric cortical and subcortical T2 hyperintensities in cerebral and cerebellar hemispheres converted into symmetrical diffuse cerebral and predominantly cerebellar atrophy with uniform loss of both white and grey matter on follow-up MRI. Also, subdural hemorrhages of various sizes and different stages and tortuosity of larger proximal intracranial vessels with distal narrowing were identified. Ours is a completely worked-up proven case of Menkes kinky hair disease (MKHD) with history, electroencephalography, biochemical, trichoanalysis, and MRI findings. This is a good teaching case and shows importance of clinical examination and biochemistry as complimentary to MRI. Tortuous intracranial arteries with blocked major vessels are found only in this disease, thus stressing the value of MR Angiography in these patients. PMID:22919529

  2. Exogenous melatonin for sleep disorders in neurodegenerative diseases: a meta-analysis of randomized clinical trials.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Wei; Chen, Xue-yan; Su, Su-wen; Jia, Qing-zhong; Ding, Tao; Zhu, Zhong-ning; Zhang, Tong

    2016-01-01

    The purpose of this work is to investigate the efficacy of exogenous melatonin in the treatment of sleep disorders in patients with neurodegenerative disease. We searched Pubmed, the Cochrane Library, and ClinicalTrials.gov, from inception to July 2015. We included randomized clinical trials (RCTs) that compared melatonin with placebo and that had the primary aim of improving sleep in people with neurodegenerative diseases, particularly Alzheimer's disease (AD) and Parkinson's disease (PD). We pooled data with the weighted mean difference in sleep outcomes. To assess heterogeneity in results of individual studies, we used Cochran's Q statistic and the I (2) statistic. 9 RCTs were included in this research. We found that the treatment with exogenous melatonin has positive effects on sleep quality as assessed by the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index (PSQI) in PD patients (MD: 4.20, 95 % CI: 0.92-7.48; P = 0.01), and by changes in PSQI component 4 in AD patients (MD: 0.67, 95 % CI: 0.04-1.30; P = 0.04), but not on objective sleep outcomes in both AD and PD patients. Treatment with melatonin effectively improved the clinical and neurophysiological aspects of rapid eye movement (REM) sleep behavior disorder (RBD), especially elderly individuals with underlying neurodegenerative disorders. This meta-analysis provided some evidence that melatonin improves sleep quality in patients with AD and PD, and melatonin can be considered as a possible sole or add-on therapy in neurodegenerative disorders patients with RBD.

  3. Proactive Strategies for Managing the Behavior of Children with Neurodegenerative Diseases and Visual Impairment.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Loftin, M. M.; Koehler, W. S.

    1998-01-01

    Presents proactive strategies to help educators deal with challenging behaviors of children with visual impairments and neurodegenerative diseases. Strategies are provided for general noncompliance, difficulty with changed or novel routines, difficulty maintaining physical movement, significant variations in affect, and intense tantrums and other…

  4. Contribution of analytical microscopies to human neurodegenerative diseases research (PSP and AD).

    PubMed

    Quintana, Carmen

    2007-09-01

    Using analytical microscopies we have observed an increase of Fe(2+) iron-induced oxidative stress inside pathological ferritin (Ft). This finding, together with the presence of Ft in myelinated axons associated with oligodendrocyte processes and myelin sheet fraying, suggests that a dysfunction of ferritin (a ferritinopathy) may be the non-specific aging-dependent pathogenic event responsible for neurodegenerative disease.

  5. Cell-based therapies of liver diseases: age-related challenges

    PubMed Central

    Yarygin, Konstantin N; Lupatov, Alexei Y; Kholodenko, Irina V

    2015-01-01

    The scope of this review is to revise recent advances of the cell-based therapies of liver diseases with an emphasis on cell donor’s and patient’s age. Regenerative medicine with cell-based technologies as its integral part is focused on the structural and functional restoration of tissues impaired by sickness or aging. Unlike drug-based medicine directed primarily at alleviation of symptoms, regenerative medicine offers a more holistic approach to disease and senescence management aimed to achieve restoration of homeostasis. Hepatocyte transplantation and organ engineering are very probable forthcoming options of liver disease treatment in people of different ages and vigorous research and technological innovations in this area are in progress. Accordingly, availability of sufficient amounts of functional human hepatocytes is crucial. Direct isolation of autologous hepatocytes from liver biopsy is problematic due to related discomfort and difficulties with further expansion of cells, particularly those derived from aging people. Allogeneic primary human hepatocytes meeting quality standards are also in short supply. Alternatively, autologous hepatocytes can be produced by reprogramming of differentiated cells through the stage of induced pluripotent stem cells. In addition, fibroblasts and mesenchymal stromal cells can be directly induced to undergo advanced stage hepatogenic differentiation. Reprogramming of cells derived from elderly people is accompanied by the reversal of age-associated changes at the cellular level manifesting itself by telomere elongation and the U-turn of DNA methylation. Cell reprogramming can provide high quality rejuvenated hepatocytes for cell therapy and liver tissue engineering. Further technological advancements and establishment of national and global registries of induced pluripotent stem cell lines homozygous for HLA haplotypes can allow industry-style production of livers for immunosuppression-free transplantation. PMID

  6. Tau and neurodegenerative disease: the story so far.

    PubMed

    Iqbal, Khalid; Liu, Fei; Gong, Cheng-Xin

    2016-01-01

    In 1975, tau protein was isolated as a microtubule-associated factor from the porcine brain. In the previous year, a paired helical filament (PHF) protein had been identified in neurofibrillary tangles in the brains of individuals with Alzheimer disease (AD), but it was not until 1986 that the PHF protein and tau were discovered to be one and the same. In the AD brain, tau was found to be abnormally hyperphosphorylated, and it inhibited rather than promoted in vitro microtubule assembly. Almost 80 disease-causing exonic missense and intronic silent mutations in the tau gene have been found in familial cases of frontotemporal dementia but, to date, no such mutation has been found in AD. The first phase I clinical trial of an active tau immunization vaccine in patients with AD was recently completed. Assays for tau levels in cerebrospinal fluid and plasma are now available, and tau radiotracers for PET are under development. In this article, we provide an overview of the pivotal discoveries in the tau research field over the past 40 years. We also review the current status of the field, including disease mechanisms and therapeutic approaches. PMID:26635213

  7. Ca2+ dysfunction in neurodegenerative disorders: Alzheimer's disease.

    PubMed

    Fedrizzi, Laura; Carafoli, Ernesto

    2011-01-01

    More than one century ago "a peculiar disorder of the cerebral cortex" was noticed in a middle-aged patient who had been affected by dementia in the last years of his life. The postmortem hallmarks of his brain were protein plaques, neurofibrillary tangles, and atherosclerotic changes: the neuropathologist who found these alterations and gave his name to the disease that underlied them was Alois Alzheimer (Alzheimer et al., Clin Anat 1995;8:429-431). Following its discovery, the disease has been studied with a vigor that went parallel to the increase of its social importance. The amount of information amassed in the literature is impressive, but knowledge on the mechanism underlying its onset and its progression is still very limited. Numerous hypotheses on the molecular pathogenesis of the Alzheimer's disease (AD) have been proposed and two have gradually gained wide consensus: (i) the amyloid cascade hypothesis, first proposed on the basis of the toxicity evoked by the deposition of amyloid β (Aβ) aggregates; (ii) the Ca(2+) hypothesis, which focuses on the correlation between the dysfunction of Ca(2+) homeostasis and the neurodegeneration process. This succinct review will discuss the essential aspects of the role of Ca(2+) homeostasis dysregulation in the onset and development of AD.

  8. Oxidative Stress and Epigenetic Regulation in Ageing and Age-Related Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Cencioni, Chiara; Spallotta, Francesco; Martelli, Fabio; Valente, Sergio; Mai, Antonello; Zeiher, Andreas M.; Gaetano, Carlo

    2013-01-01

    Recent statistics indicate that the human population is ageing rapidly. Healthy, but also diseased, elderly people are increasing. This trend is particularly evident in Western countries, where healthier living conditions and better cures are available. To understand the process leading to age-associated alterations is, therefore, of the highest relevance for the development of new treatments for age-associated diseases, such as cancer, diabetes, Alzheimer and cardiovascular accidents. Mechanistically, it is well accepted that the accumulation of intracellular damage determined by reactive oxygen species (ROS) might orchestrate the progressive loss of control over biological homeostasis and the functional impairment typical of aged tissues. Here, we review how epigenetics takes part in the control of stress stimuli and the mechanisms of ageing physiology and physiopathology. Alteration of epigenetic enzyme activity, histone modifications and DNA-methylation is, in fact, typically associated with the ageing process. Specifically, ageing presents peculiar epigenetic markers that, taken altogether, form the still ill-defined “ageing epigenome”. The comprehension of mechanisms and pathways leading to epigenetic modifications associated with ageing may help the development of anti-ageing therapies. PMID:23989608

  9. Positive oxidative stress in aging and aging-related disease tolerance.

    PubMed

    Yan, Liang-Jun

    2014-01-01

    It is now well established that reactive oxygen species (ROS), reactive nitrogen species (RNS), and a basal level of oxidative stress are essential for cell survival. It is also well known that while severe oxidative stress often leads to widespread oxidative damage and cell death, a moderate level of oxidative stress, induced by a variety of stressors, can yield great beneficial effects on adaptive cellular responses to pathological challenges in aging and aging-associated disease tolerance such as ischemia tolerance. Here in this review, I term this moderate level of oxidative stress as positive oxidative stress, which usually involves imprinting molecular signatures on lipids and proteins via formation of lipid peroxidation by-products and protein oxidation adducts. As ROS/RNS are short-lived molecules, these molecular signatures can thus execute the ultimate function of ROS/RNS. Representative examples of lipid peroxidation products and protein oxidation adducts are presented to illustrate the role of positive oxidative stress in a variety of pathological settings, demonstrating that positive oxidative stress could be a valuable prophylactic and/or therapeutic approach targeting aging and aging-associated diseases.

  10. Applications of Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells in Studying the Neurodegenerative Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Wan, Wenbin; Cao, Lan; Kalionis, Bill; Xia, Shijin; Tai, Xiantao

    2015-01-01

    Neurodegeneration is the umbrella term for the progressive loss of structure or function of neurons. Incurable neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer's disease (AD) and Parkinson's disease (PD) show dramatic rising trends particularly in the advanced age groups. However, the underlying mechanisms are not yet fully elucidated, and to date there are no biomarkers for early detection or effective treatments for the underlying causes of these diseases. Furthermore, due to species variation and differences between animal models (e.g., mouse transgenic and knockout models) of neurodegenerative diseases, substantial debate focuses on whether animal and cell culture disease models can correctly model the condition in human patients. In 2006, Yamanaka of Kyoto University first demonstrated a novel approach for the preparation of induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs), which displayed similar pluripotency potential to embryonic stem cells (ESCs). Currently, iPSCs studies are permeating many sectors of disease research. Patient sample-derived iPSCs can be used to construct patient-specific disease models to elucidate the pathogenic mechanisms of disease development and to test new therapeutic strategies. Accordingly, the present review will focus on recent progress in iPSC research in the modeling of neurodegenerative disorders and in the development of novel therapeutic options. PMID:26240571

  11. Positive Lysosomal Modulation As a Unique Strategy to Treat Age-Related Protein Accumulation Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Wisniewski, Meagan L.; Butler, David

    2012-01-01

    Abstract Lysosomes are involved in degrading and recycling cellular ingredients, and their disruption with age may contribute to amyloidogenesis, paired helical filaments (PHFs), and α-synuclein and mutant huntingtin aggregation. Lysosomal cathepsins are upregulated by accumulating proteins and more so by the modulator Z-Phe-Ala-diazomethylketone (PADK). Such positive modulators of the lysosomal system have been studied in the well-characterized hippocampal slice model of protein accumulation that exhibits the pathogenic cascade of tau aggregation, tubulin breakdown, microtubule destabilization, transport failure, and synaptic decline. Active cathepsins were upregulated by PADK; Rab proteins were modified as well, indicating enhanced trafficking, whereas lysosome-associated membrane protein and proteasome markers were unchanged. Lysosomal modulation reduced the pre-existing PHF deposits, restored tubulin structure and transport, and recovered synaptic components. Further proof-of-principle studies used Alzheimer disease mouse models. It was recently reported that systemic PADK administration caused dramatic increases in cathepsin B protein and activity levels, whereas neprilysin, insulin-degrading enzyme, α-secretase, and β-secretase were unaffected by PADK. In the transgenic models, PADK treatment resulted in clearance of intracellular amyloid beta (Aβ) peptide and concomitant reduction of extracellular deposits. Production of the less pathogenic Aβ1–38 peptide corresponded with decreased levels of Aβ1–42, supporting the lysosome's antiamyloidogenic role through intracellular truncation. Amelioration of synaptic and behavioral deficits also indicates a neuroprotective function of the lysosomal system, identifying lysosomal modulation as an avenue for disease-modifying therapies. From the in vitro and in vivo findings, unique lysosomal modulators represent a minimally invasive, pharmacologically controlled strategy against protein accumulation disorders

  12. Subspace Regularized Sparse Multitask Learning for Multiclass Neurodegenerative Disease Identification.

    PubMed

    Zhu, Xiaofeng; Suk, Heung-Il; Lee, Seong-Whan; Shen, Dinggang

    2016-03-01

    The high feature-dimension and low sample-size problem is one of the major challenges in the study of computer-aided Alzheimer's disease (AD) diagnosis. To circumvent this problem, feature selection and subspace learning have been playing core roles in the literature. Generally, feature selection methods are preferable in clinical applications due to their ease for interpretation, but subspace learning methods can usually achieve more promising results. In this paper, we combine two different methodological approaches to discriminative feature selection in a unified framework. Specifically, we utilize two subspace learning methods, namely, linear discriminant analysis and locality preserving projection, which have proven their effectiveness in a variety of fields, to select class-discriminative and noise-resistant features. Unlike previous methods in neuroimaging studies that mostly focused on a binary classification, the proposed feature selection method is further applicable for multiclass classification in AD diagnosis. Extensive experiments on the Alzheimer's disease neuroimaging initiative dataset showed the effectiveness of the proposed method over other state-of-the-art methods. PMID:26276982

  13. Bioinformatics Mining and Modeling Methods for the Identification of Disease Mechanisms in Neurodegenerative Disorders

    PubMed Central

    Hofmann-Apitius, Martin; Ball, Gordon; Gebel, Stephan; Bagewadi, Shweta; de Bono, Bernard; Schneider, Reinhard; Page, Matt; Kodamullil, Alpha Tom; Younesi, Erfan; Ebeling, Christian; Tegnér, Jesper; Canard, Luc

    2015-01-01

    Since the decoding of the Human Genome, techniques from bioinformatics, statistics, and machine learning have been instrumental in uncovering patterns in increasing amounts and types of different data produced by technical profiling technologies applied to clinical samples, animal models, and cellular systems. Yet, progress on unravelling biological mechanisms, causally driving diseases, has been limited, in part due to the inherent complexity of biological systems. Whereas we have witnessed progress in the areas of cancer, cardiovascular and metabolic diseases, the area of neurodegenerative diseases has proved to be very challenging. This is in part because the aetiology of neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer´s disease or Parkinson´s disease is unknown, rendering it very difficult to discern early causal events. Here we describe a panel of bioinformatics and modeling approaches that have recently been developed to identify candidate mechanisms of neurodegenerative diseases based on publicly available data and knowledge. We identify two complementary strategies—data mining techniques using genetic data as a starting point to be further enriched using other data-types, or alternatively to encode prior knowledge about disease mechanisms in a model based framework supporting reasoning and enrichment analysis. Our review illustrates the challenges entailed in integrating heterogeneous, multiscale and multimodal information in the area of neurology in general and neurodegeneration in particular. We conclude, that progress would be accelerated by increasing efforts on performing systematic collection of multiple data-types over time from each individual suffering from neurodegenerative disease. The work presented here has been driven by project AETIONOMY; a project funded in the course of the Innovative Medicines Initiative (IMI); which is a public-private partnership of the European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industry Associations (EFPIA) and the European

  14. Bioinformatics Mining and Modeling Methods for the Identification of Disease Mechanisms in Neurodegenerative Disorders.

    PubMed

    Hofmann-Apitius, Martin; Ball, Gordon; Gebel, Stephan; Bagewadi, Shweta; de Bono, Bernard; Schneider, Reinhard; Page, Matt; Kodamullil, Alpha Tom; Younesi, Erfan; Ebeling, Christian; Tegnér, Jesper; Canard, Luc

    2015-01-01

    Since the decoding of the Human Genome, techniques from bioinformatics, statistics, and machine learning have been instrumental in uncovering patterns in increasing amounts and types of different data produced by technical profiling technologies applied to clinical samples, animal models, and cellular systems. Yet, progress on unravelling biological mechanisms, causally driving diseases, has been limited, in part due to the inherent complexity of biological systems. Whereas we have witnessed progress in the areas of cancer, cardiovascular and metabolic diseases, the area of neurodegenerative diseases has proved to be very challenging. This is in part because the aetiology of neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer´s disease or Parkinson´s disease is unknown, rendering it very difficult to discern early causal events. Here we describe a panel of bioinformatics and modeling approaches that have recently been developed to identify candidate mechanisms of neurodegenerative diseases based on publicly available data and knowledge. We identify two complementary strategies-data mining techniques using genetic data as a starting point to be further enriched using other data-types, or alternatively to encode prior knowledge about disease mechanisms in a model based framework supporting reasoning and enrichment analysis. Our review illustrates the challenges entailed in integrating heterogeneous, multiscale and multimodal information in the area of neurology in general and neurodegeneration in particular. We conclude, that progress would be accelerated by increasing efforts on performing systematic collection of multiple data-types over time from each individual suffering from neurodegenerative disease. The work presented here has been driven by project AETIONOMY; a project funded in the course of the Innovative Medicines Initiative (IMI); which is a public-private partnership of the European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industry Associations (EFPIA) and the European

  15. Preimplantation genetic diagnosis for Pelizaeus-Merzbacher disease with testing for age-related aneuploidies.

    PubMed

    Verlinsky, Y; Rechitsky, S; Laziuk, K; Librach, C; Genovese, R; Kuliev, A

    2006-01-01

    Pelizaeus-Merzbacher disease (PMD) is an X-linked recessive demyelinating disorder of the central nervous system, caused by mutations of the proteolipid protein 1 gene (PLP1 gene). As no specific therapy is available for PMD, preimplantation genetic diagnosis (PGD) may be a useful option for couples carrying this mutation. PGD was performed for a couple who had had one child with the L86P mutation in exon 3 of the PLP1 gene. Because of advanced maternal age, PGD for this single-gene disorder was performed together with testing for chromosomal abnormalities. Polar bodies and blastomeres were tested for the presence of maternal mutation and closely linked markers DXS8020 and PLP5' (CA)n. The same blastomeres were also tested for the copy number of chromosomes 13, 16, 18, 21, 22, X and Y, and five chromosomally abnormal embryos were identified. A total of three embryos predicted to be unaffected and free of chromosomal disorder were transferred back to the patient, resulting in a twin pregnancy and the birth of two healthy female infants confirmed to be free of PMD, representing the first PGD for PMD combined with aneuploidy testing.

  16. Age-related cognitive decline and electroencephalogram slowing in Down's syndrome as a model of Alzheimer's disease.

    PubMed

    Soininen, H; Partanen, J; Jousmäki, V; Helkala, E L; Vanhanen, M; Majuri, S; Kaski, M; Hartikainen, P; Riekkinen, P

    1993-03-01

    We studied quantitative electroencephalogram and neuropsychological performance in an aging series of 31 patients with Down's syndrome and compared the findings with those of 36 patients with probable Alzheimer's disease and age-matched controls. We found an age-related decline of cortical functions and slowing of the electroencephalogram in Down's syndrome patients aged from 20 to 60 years. Slowing of the electroencephalogram, i.e. the decrease of the peak frequency, was significantly related to Mini-Mental status scores, and visual, praxic and speech functions, as well as memory in the Down patients, similar to the Alzheimer patients. Similar correlations were not demonstrated for young or elderly controls. This study provides neuropsychological and electrophysiological data to suggest that studying Down's syndrome patients of different ages can serve as a model for progression of Alzheimer's disease. PMID:8469312

  17. A Friend in Need may not be a Friend Indeed: Role of Microglia in Neurodegenerative Diseases.

    PubMed

    Kaushik, D K; Basu, A

    2013-09-19

    Inflammation plays a critical role in the progression of neurodegenerative diseases. Microglia are the resident macrophages of the central nervous system (CNS) which actively take part in the neuronal development of CNS and are involved in clearance of pathogens as well as cellular debris from the system upon insult to this organization. Chronic activation of microglia in neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer's disease (AD), Parkinson's disease (PD), Huntington's disease (HD), amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) as well as inflammatory conditions of CNS such as multiple sclerosis (MS) results in overall upregulation of pro-inflammatory cytokines and chemokines in the brain parenchyma. This compromises the neuronal health which further activates microglia by releasing death associated molecules such as neuromelanin, Aβ peptides and cellular debris at the lesion site thereby forming a vicious cycle of disease advancement. Targeting microglial activation has proven to be a viable option in the treatment of inflammation related neurodegenerative diseases. This review will discuss the central position of inflammation and therapeutic strategies aiming to alleviate disease progression in some of the important inflammatory conditions of CNS.

  18. A friend in need may not be a friend indeed: role of microglia in neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Kaushik, Deepak Kumar; Basu, Anirban

    2013-09-01

    Inflammation plays a critical role in the progression of neurodegenerative diseases. Microglia are the resident macrophages of the central nervous system (CNS) which actively take part in the neuronal development of CNS and are involved in clearance of pathogens as well as cellular debris from the system upon insult to this organization. Chronic activation of microglia in neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer's disease (AD), Parkinson's disease (PD), Huntington's disease (HD), amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) as well as inflammatory conditions of CNS such as multiple sclerosis (MS) results in overall upregulation of pro-inflammatory cytokines and chemokines in the brain parenchyma. This compromises the neuronal health which further activates microglia by releasing death associated molecules such as neuromelanin, Aβ peptides and cellular debris at the lesion site thereby forming a vicious cycle of disease advancement. Targeting microglial activation has proven to be a viable option in the treatment of inflammation related neurodegenerative diseases. This review will discuss the central position of inflammation and therapeutic strategies aiming to alleviate disease progression in some of the important inflammatory conditions of CNS.

  19. Movement and Other Neurodegenerative Syndromes in Patients with Systemic Rheumatic Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Menezes, Rikitha; Pantelyat, Alexander; Izbudak, Izlem; Birnbaum, Julius

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Patients with rheumatic diseases can present with movement and other neurodegenerative disorders. It may be underappreciated that movement and other neurodegenerative disorders can encompass a wide variety of disease entities. Such disorders are strikingly heterogeneous and lead to a wider spectrum of clinical injury than seen in Parkinson's disease. Therefore, we sought to stringently phenotype movement and other neurodegenerative disorders presenting in a case series of rheumatic disease patients. We integrated our findings with a review of the literature to understand mechanisms which may account for such a ubiquitous pattern of clinical injury. Seven rheumatic disease patients (5 Sjögren's syndrome patients, 2 undifferentiated connective tissue disease patients) were referred and could be misdiagnosed as having Parkinson's disease. However, all of these patients were ultimately diagnosed as having other movement or neurodegenerative disorders. Findings inconsistent with and more expansive than Parkinson's disease included cerebellar degeneration, dystonia with an alien-limb phenomenon, and nonfluent aphasias. A notable finding was that individual patients could be affected by cooccurring movement and other neurodegenerative disorders, each of which could be exceptionally rare (ie, prevalence of ∼1:1000), and therefore with the collective probability that such disorders were merely coincidental and causally unrelated being as low as ∼1-per-billion. Whereas our review of the literature revealed that ubiquitous patterns of clinical injury were frequently associated with magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) findings suggestive of a widespread vasculopathy, our patients did not have such neuroimaging findings. Instead, our patients could have syndromes which phenotypically resembled paraneoplastic and other inflammatory disorders which are known to be associated with antineuronal antibodies. We similarly identified immune-mediated and inflammatory markers

  20. Neuroprotective effects of lithium: implications for the treatment of Alzheimer's disease and related neurodegenerative disorders.

    PubMed

    Forlenza, O V; De-Paula, V J R; Diniz, B S O

    2014-06-18

    Lithium is a well-established therapeutic option for the acute and long-term management of bipolar disorder and major depression. More recently, based on findings from translational research, lithium has also been regarded as a neuroprotective agent and a candidate drug for disease-modification in certain neurodegenerative disorders, namely, Alzheimer's disease (AD), amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), and, more recently, Parkinson's disease (PD). The putative neuroprotective effects of lithium rely on the fact that it modulates several homeostatic mechanisms involved in neurotrophic response, autophagy, oxidative stress, inflammation, and mitochondrial function. Such a wide range of intracellular responses may be secondary to two key effects, that is, the inhibition of glycogen synthase kinase-3 beta (GSK-3β) and inositol monophosphatase (IMP) by lithium. In the present review, we revisit the neurobiological properties of lithium in light of the available evidence of its neurotrophic and neuroprotective properties, and discuss the rationale for its use in the treatment and prevention of neurodegenerative diseases.

  1. Thymosin β4 as a restorative/regenerative therapy for neurological injury and neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Chopp, Michael; Zhang, Zheng Gang

    2015-01-01

    Thymosin β4 (Tβ4) promotes CNS and peripheral nervous system (PNS) plasticity and neurovascular remodeling leading to neurological recovery in a range of neurological diseases. Treatment of neural injury and neurodegenerative disease 24 h or more post-injury and disease onset with Tβ4 enhances angiogenesis, neurogenesis, neurite and axonal outgrowth, and oligodendrogenesis, and thereby, significantly improves functional and behavioral outcomes. We propose that oligodendrogenesis is a common link by which Tβ4 promotes recovery after neural injury and neurodegenerative disease. The ability to target many diverse restorative processes via multiple molecular pathways that drive oligodendrogenesis and neurovascular remodeling may be mediated by the ability of Tβ4 to alter cellular expression of microRNAs (miRNAs). However, further investigations on the essential role of miRNAs in regulating protein expression and the remarkable exosomal intercellular communication network via exosomes will likely provide insight into mechanisms of action and means to amplify the therapeutic effects of Tβ4.

  2. Effects of aluminum on the nervous system and its possible link with neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Kawahara, Masahiro

    2005-11-01

    Aluminum is environmentally abundant, but not an essential element. Aluminum has been associated with several neurodegenerative diseases, such as dialysis encephalopathy, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and Parkinsonism dementia in the Kii peninsula and Guam, and in particular, Alzheimer's disease. Although this association remains controversial, there is increasing evidence which suggests the implication of metal homeostasis in the pathogenesis of Alzheimer's disease. Aluminum, zinc, copper, and iron cause the conformational changes of Alzheimer's amyloid-beta protein. Al causes the accumulation of tau protein and amyloid-beta protein in experimental animals. Aluminum induces neuronal apoptosis in vivo as well as in vitro. Furthermore, a relationship between aluminum and the iron-homeostasis or calcium-homeostasis has been suggested. Based on these findings, the characteristics of aluminum neurotoxicity are reviewed, and the potential link between aluminum and neurodegenerative diseases is reconsidered.

  3. Clinical implications from proteomic studies in neurodegenerative diseases: lessons from mitochondrial proteins.

    PubMed

    Butterfield, D Allan; Palmieri, Erika M; Castegna, Alessandra

    2016-01-01

    Mitochondria play a key role in eukaryotic cells, being mediators of energy, biosynthetic and regulatory requirements of these cells. Emerging proteomics techniques have allowed scientists to obtain the differentially expressed proteome or the proteomic redox status in mitochondria. This has unmasked the diversity of proteins with respect to subcellular location, expression and interactions. Mitochondria have become a research 'hot spot' in subcellular proteomics, leading to identification of candidate clinical targets in neurodegenerative diseases in which mitochondria are known to play pathological roles. The extensive efforts to rapidly obtain differentially expressed proteomes and unravel the redox proteomic status in mitochondria have yielded clinical insights into the neuropathological mechanisms of disease, identification of disease early stage and evaluation of disease progression. Although current technical limitations hamper full exploitation of the mitochondrial proteome in neurosciences, future advances are predicted to provide identification of specific therapeutic targets for neurodegenerative disorders.

  4. Glycation-altered proteolysis as a pathobiologic mechanism that links dietary glycemic index, aging, and age-related disease in non diabetics

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Epidemiologic studies indicate that the risks for major age-related debilities including coronary heart disease, diabetes, and age-related macular degeneration (AMD) are diminished in people who consume lower glycemic index (GI) diets, but lack of a unifying physiobiochemical mechanism that explains...

  5. The basics of preclinical drug development for neurodegenerative disease indications

    PubMed Central

    Steinmetz, Karen L; Spack, Edward G

    2009-01-01

    Preclinical development encompasses the activities that link drug discovery in the laboratory to initiation of human clinical trials. Preclinical studies can be designed to identify a lead candidate from several hits; develop the best procedure for new drug scale-up; select the best formulation; determine the route, frequency, and duration of exposure; and ultimately support the intended clinical trial design. The details of each preclinical development package can vary, but all have some common features. Rodent and nonrodent mammalian models are used to delineate the pharmacokinetic profile and general safety, as well as to identify toxicity patterns. One or more species may be used to determine the drug's mean residence time in the body, which depends on inherent absorption, distribution, metabolism, and excretion properties. For drugs intended to treat Alzheimer's disease or other brain-targeted diseases, the ability of a drug to cross the blood brain barrier may be a key issue. Toxicology and safety studies identify potential target organs for adverse effects and define the Therapeutic Index to set the initial starting doses in clinical trials. Pivotal preclinical safety studies generally require regulatory oversight as defined by US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Good Laboratory Practices and international guidelines, including the International Conference on Harmonisation. Concurrent preclinical development activities include developing the Clinical Plan and preparing the new drug product, including the associated documentation to meet stringent FDA Good Manufacturing Practices regulatory guidelines. A wide range of commercial and government contract options are available for investigators seeking to advance their candidate(s). Government programs such as the Small Business Innovative Research and Small Business Technology Transfer grants and the National Institutes of Health Rapid Access to Interventional Development Pilot Program provide funding and

  6. The basics of preclinical drug development for neurodegenerative disease indications.

    PubMed

    Steinmetz, Karen L; Spack, Edward G

    2009-01-01

    Preclinical development encompasses the activities that link drug discovery in the laboratory to initiation of human clinical trials. Preclinical studies can be designed to identify a lead candidate from several hits; develop the best procedure for new drug scale-up; select the best formulation; determine the route, frequency, and duration of exposure; and ultimately support the intended clinical trial design. The details of each preclinical development package can vary, but all have some common features. Rodent and nonrodent mammalian models are used to delineate the pharmacokinetic profile and general safety, as well as to identify toxicity patterns. One or more species may be used to determine the drug's mean residence time in the body, which depends on inherent absorption, distribution, metabolism, and excretion properties. For drugs intended to treat Alzheimer's disease or other brain-targeted diseases, the ability of a drug to cross the blood brain barrier may be a key issue. Toxicology and safety studies identify potential target organs for adverse effects and define the Therapeutic Index to set the initial starting doses in clinical trials. Pivotal preclinical safety studies generally require regulatory oversight as defined by US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Good Laboratory Practices and international guidelines, including the International Conference on Harmonization. Concurrent preclinical development activities include developing the Clinical Plan and preparing the new drug product, including the associated documentation to meet stringent FDA Good Manufacturing Practices regulatory guidelines. A wide range of commercial and government contract options are available for investigators seeking to advance their candidate(s). Government programs such as the Small Business Innovative Research and Small Business Technology Transfer grants and the National Institutes of Health Rapid Access to Interventional Development Pilot Program provide funding and

  7. Abstract and concrete categories? Evidences from neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Catricalà, Eleonora; Della Rosa, Pasquale A; Plebani, Valentina; Vigliocco, Gabriella; Cappa, Stefano F

    2014-11-01

    We assessed the performance of patients with a diagnosis of Alzheimer׳s disease (AD) and of the semantic variant of primary progressive aphasia (sv-PPA) in a series of tasks involving both abstract and concrete stimuli, which were controlled for most of the variables that have been shown to affect performance on lexical-semantic tasks. Our aims were to compare the patients׳ performance on abstract and concrete stimuli and to assess category-effects within the abstract and concrete domains. The results showed: (i) a better performance on abstract than concrete concepts in sv-PPA patients. (ii) Category-related effects in the abstract domain, with emotion concepts being preserved in AD and social relations being selectively impaired in sv-PPA. In addition, a living-non living dissociation may be (infrequently) observed in individual AD patients after controlling for an extensive set of potential confounds. Thus, differences between and within the concrete or abstract domain may be present in patients with semantic memory disorders, mirroring the different brain regions involved by the different pathologies.

  8. Roles of long noncoding RNAs in brain development, functional diversification and neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Wu, Ping; Zuo, Xialin; Deng, Houliang; Liu, Xiaoxia; Liu, Li; Ji, Aimin

    2013-08-01

    Long noncoding RNAs (lncRNAs) have been attracting immense research interest, while only a handful of lncRNAs have been characterized thoroughly. Their involvement in the fundamental cellular processes including regulate gene expression at epigenetics, transcription, and post-transcription highlighted a central role in cell homeostasis. However, lncRNAs studies are still at a relatively early stage, their definition, conservation, functions, and action mechanisms remain fairly complicated. Here, we give a systematic and comprehensive summary of the existing knowledge of lncRNAs in order to provide a better understanding of this new studying field. lncRNAs play important roles in brain development, neuron function and maintenance, and neurodegenerative diseases are becoming increasingly evident. In this review, we also highlighted recent studies related lncRNAs in central nervous system (CNS) development and neurodegenerative diseases, including Alzheimer's disease (AD), Parkinson's disease (PD), Huntington's disease (HD) and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), and elucidated some specific lncRNAs which may be important for understanding the pathophysiology of neurodegenerative diseases, also have the potential as therapeutic targets.

  9. Roles of long noncoding RNAs in brain development, functional diversification and neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Wu, Ping; Zuo, Xialin; Deng, Houliang; Liu, Xiaoxia; Liu, Li; Ji, Aimin

    2013-08-01

    Long noncoding RNAs (lncRNAs) have been attracting immense research interest, while only a handful of lncRNAs have been characterized thoroughly. Their involvement in the fundamental cellular processes including regulate gene expression at epigenetics, transcription, and post-transcription highlighted a central role in cell homeostasis. However, lncRNAs studies are still at a relatively early stage, their definition, conservation, functions, and action mechanisms remain fairly complicated. Here, we give a systematic and comprehensive summary of the existing knowledge of lncRNAs in order to provide a better understanding of this new studying field. lncRNAs play important roles in brain development, neuron function and maintenance, and neurodegenerative diseases are becoming increasingly evident. In this review, we also highlighted recent studies related lncRNAs in central nervous system (CNS) development and neurodegenerative diseases, including Alzheimer's disease (AD), Parkinson's disease (PD), Huntington's disease (HD) and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), and elucidated some specific lncRNAs which may be important for understanding the pathophysiology of neurodegenerative diseases, also have the potential as therapeutic targets. PMID:23756188

  10. Role of paraoxonase 1 (PON1) in organophosphate metabolism: Implications in neurodegenerative diseases

    SciTech Connect

    Androutsopoulos, Vasilis P.; Kanavouras, Konstantinos; Tsatsakis, Aristidis M.

    2011-11-15

    Organophosphate pesticides are a class of compounds that are widely used in agricultural and rural areas. Paraoxonase 1 (PON1) is a phase-I enzyme that is involved in the hydrolysis of organophosphate esters. Environmental poisoning by organophosphate compounds has been the main driving force of previous research on PON1 enzymes. Recent discoveries in animal models have revealed the important role of the enzyme in lipid metabolism. However although PON1 function is well established in experimental models, the contribution of PON1 in neurodegenerative diseases remains unclear. In this minireview we summarize the involvement of PON1 genotypes in the occurrence of Parkinson's disease, Alzheimer's disease and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. A brief overview of latest epidemiological studies, regarding the two most important PON1 coding region polymorphisms PON1-L55M and PON1-Q192R is presented. Positive and negative associations of PON1 with disease occurrence are reported. Notably the MM and RR alleles contribute a risk enhancing effect for the development of some neurodegenerative diseases, which may be explained by the reduced lipoprotein free radical scavenging activity that may give rise to neuronal damage, through distinct mechanism. Conflicting findings that fail to support this postulate may represent the human population ethnic heterogeneity, different sample size and environmental parameters affecting PON1 status. We conclude that further epidemiological studies are required in order to address the exact contribution of PON1 genome in combination with organophosphate exposure in populations with neurodegenerative diseases.

  11. Geroprotectors.org: a new, structured and curated database of current therapeutic interventions in aging and age-related disease.

    PubMed

    Moskalev, Alexey; Chernyagina, Elizaveta; de Magalhães, João Pedro; Barardo, Diogo; Thoppil, Harikrishnan; Shaposhnikov, Mikhail; Budovsky, Arie; Fraifeld, Vadim E; Garazha, Andrew; Tsvetkov, Vasily; Bronovitsky, Evgeny; Bogomolov, Vladislav; Scerbacov, Alexei; Kuryan, Oleg; Gurinovich, Roman; Jellen, Leslie C; Kennedy, Brian; Mamoshina, Polina; Dobrovolskaya, Evgeniya; Aliper, Alex; Kaminsky, Dmitry; Zhavoronkov, Alex

    2015-09-01

    As the level of interest in aging research increases, there is a growing number of geroprotectors, or therapeutic interventions that aim to extend the healthy lifespan and repair or reduce aging-related damage in model organisms and, eventually, in humans. There is a clear need for a manually-curated database of geroprotectors to compile and index their effects on aging and age-related diseases and link these effects to relevant studies and multiple biochemical and drug databases. Here, we introduce the first such resource, Geroprotectors (http://geroprotectors.org). Geroprotectors is a public, rapidly explorable database that catalogs over 250 experiments involving over 200 known or candidate geroprotectors that extend lifespan in model organisms. Each compound has a comprehensive profile complete with biochemistry, mechanisms, and lifespan effects in various model organisms, along with information ranging from chemical structure, side effects, and toxicity to FDA drug status. These are presented in a visually intuitive, efficient framework fit for casual browsing or in-depth research alike. Data are linked to the source studies or databases, providing quick and convenient access to original data. The Geroprotectors database facilitates cross-study, cross-organism, and cross-discipline analysis and saves countless hours of inefficient literature and web searching. Geroprotectors is a one-stop, knowledge-sharing, time-saving resource for researchers seeking healthy aging solutions. PMID:26342919

  12. Geroprotectors.org: a new, structured and curated database of current therapeutic interventions in aging and age-related disease.

    PubMed

    Moskalev, Alexey; Chernyagina, Elizaveta; de Magalhães, João Pedro; Barardo, Diogo; Thoppil, Harikrishnan; Shaposhnikov, Mikhail; Budovsky, Arie; Fraifeld, Vadim E; Garazha, Andrew; Tsvetkov, Vasily; Bronovitsky, Evgeny; Bogomolov, Vladislav; Scerbacov, Alexei; Kuryan, Oleg; Gurinovich, Roman; Jellen, Leslie C; Kennedy, Brian; Mamoshina, Polina; Dobrovolskaya, Evgeniya; Aliper, Alex; Kaminsky, Dmitry; Zhavoronkov, Alex

    2015-09-01

    As the level of interest in aging research increases, there is a growing number of geroprotectors, or therapeutic interventions that aim to extend the healthy lifespan and repair or reduce aging-related damage in model organisms and, eventually, in humans. There is a clear need for a manually-curated database of geroprotectors to compile and index their effects on aging and age-related diseases and link these effects to relevant studies and multiple biochemical and drug databases. Here, we introduce the first such resource, Geroprotectors (http://geroprotectors.org). Geroprotectors is a public, rapidly explorable database that catalogs over 250 experiments involving over 200 known or candidate geroprotectors that extend lifespan in model organisms. Each compound has a comprehensive profile complete with biochemistry, mechanisms, and lifespan effects in various model organisms, along with information ranging from chemical structure, side effects, and toxicity to FDA drug status. These are presented in a visually intuitive, efficient framework fit for casual browsing or in-depth research alike. Data are linked to the source studies or databases, providing quick and convenient access to original data. The Geroprotectors database facilitates cross-study, cross-organism, and cross-discipline analysis and saves countless hours of inefficient literature and web searching. Geroprotectors is a one-stop, knowledge-sharing, time-saving resource for researchers seeking healthy aging solutions.

  13. Geroprotectors.org: a new, structured and curated database of current therapeutic interventions in aging and age-related disease

    PubMed Central

    Moskalev, Alexey; Chernyagina, Elizaveta; de Magalhães, João Pedro; Barardo, Diogo; Thoppil, Harikrishnan; Shaposhnikov, Mikhail; Budovsky, Arie; Fraifeld, Vadim E.; Garazha, Andrew; Tsvetkov, Vasily; Bronovitsky, Evgeny; Bogomolov, Vladislav; Scerbacov, Alexei; Kuryan, Oleg; Gurinovich, Roman; Jellen, Leslie C.; Kennedy, Brian; Mamoshina, Polina; Dobrovolskaya, Evgeniya; Aliper, Alex; Kaminsky, Dmitry; Zhavoronkov, Alex

    2015-01-01

    As the level of interest in aging research increases, there is a growing number of geroprotectors, or therapeutic interventions that aim to extend the healthy lifespan and repair or reduce aging-related damage in model organisms and, eventually, in humans. There is a clear need for a manually-curated database of geroprotectors to compile and index their effects on aging and age-related diseases and link these effects to relevant studies and multiple biochemical and drug databases. Here, we introduce the first such resource, Geroprotectors (http://geroprotectors.org). Geroprotectors is a public, rapidly explorable database that catalogs over 250 experiments involving over 200 known or candidate geroprotectors that extend lifespan in model organisms. Each compound has a comprehensive profile complete with biochemistry, mechanisms, and lifespan effects in various model organisms, along with information ranging from chemical structure, side effects, and toxicity to FDA drug status. These are presented in a visually intuitive, efficient framework fit for casual browsing or in-depth research alike. Data are linked to the source studies or databases, providing quick and convenient access to original data. The Geroprotectors database facilitates cross-study, cross-organism, and cross-discipline analysis and saves countless hours of inefficient literature and web searching. Geroprotectors is a one-stop, knowledge-sharing, time-saving resource for researchers seeking healthy aging solutions. PMID:26342919

  14. The Prevalence of Age-Related Eye Diseases and Cataract Surgery among Older Adults in the City of Lodz, Poland

    PubMed Central

    Nowak, Michal Szymon; Smigielski, Janusz

    2015-01-01

    Purpose. To determine the prevalence of age-related eye diseases and cataract surgery among older adults in the city of Lodz, in central Poland. Material and Methods. The study design was cross-sectional and observational study. A total of 1107 women and men of predominantly Caucasian origin were successfully enumerated and recruited for the study. All selected subjects were interviewed and underwent detailed ophthalmic examinations. Results. Overall 8.04% (95% CI 6.44–9.64) subjects had cataract surgery in either eye. After excluding subjects with bilateral cataract surgery, the prevalence of cataract was 12.10% (95% CI 10.18–14.03). AMD was found in 4.33% (95% CI 3.14–5.54 ) of all subjects. Of them 3.25% (95% CI 2.21–4.30 ) had early AMD and 1.08% (95% CI 0.47–1.69) had late AMD. Various types of glaucoma were diagnosed in 5.51% (95% CI 4.17–6.85) of subjects and 2.62% (95% CI 1.68–3.56) had OHT. The prevalence rates of DR and myopic macular degeneration were 1.72% (95% CI 0.95–2.48) and 0.45% (95% CI 0.06–0.85), respectively. All multiple logistic regression models were only significantly associated with older age. The highest rate of visual impairment was observed among subjects with retinal diseases. Conclusions. The study revealed high prevalence of age-related eye diseases in this older population. PMID:25789169

  15. Gene suppression strategies for dominantly inherited neurodegenerative diseases: lessons from Huntington's disease and spinocerebellar ataxia.

    PubMed

    Keiser, Megan S; Kordasiewicz, Holly B; McBride, Jodi L

    2016-04-15

    RNA-targeting approaches are emerging as viable therapeutics that offer an alternative method to modulate traditionally 'undrugable' targets. In the case of dominantly inherited neurodegenerative diseases, gene suppression strategies can target the underlying cause of these intractable disorders. Polyglutamine diseases are caused by CAG expansions in discrete genes, making them ideal candidates for gene suppression therapies. Here, we discuss the current state of gene suppression approaches for Huntington's disease and the spinocerebellar ataxias, including the use of antisense oligonucleotides, short-interfering RNAs, as well as viral vector-mediated delivery of short hairpin RNAs and artificial microRNAs. We focus on lessons learned from preclinical studies investigating gene suppression therapies for these disorders, particularly in rodent models of disease and in non-human primates. In animal models, recent advances in gene suppression technologies have not only prevented disease progression in a number of cases, but have also reversed existing disease, providing evidence that reducing the expression of disease-causing genes may be of benefit in symptomatic patients. Both allele- and non-allele-specific approaches to gene suppression have made great strides over the past decade, showing efficacy and safety in both small and large animal models. Advances in delivery techniques allow for broad and durable suppression of target genes, have been validated in non-human primates and in some cases, are currently being evaluated in human patients. Finally, we discuss the challenges of developing and delivering gene suppression constructs into the CNS and recent advances of potential therapeutics into the clinic.

  16. The Age-Related Eye Disease Study 2 (AREDS2): Study Design and Baseline Characteristics (AREDS2 Report Number 1)

    PubMed Central

    Chew, Emily Y.; Clemons, Traci; SanGiovanni, John Paul; Danis, Ronald; Domalpally, Amitha; McBee, Wendy; Sperduto, Robert; Ferris, Frederick L.

    2012-01-01

    Purpose The Age-Related Eye Disease Study (AREDS) demonstrated beneficial effects of oral supplementation with antioxidant vitamins and minerals on the development of advanced age-related macular degeneration (AMD) in persons with at least intermediate AMD (bilateral large drusen with or without pigment changes). Observational data suggest that other oral nutrient supplements might further reduce the risk of progression to advanced AMD. The primary purpose of Age-Related Eye Disease Study 2 (AREDS2) is to evaluate the efficacy and safety of lutein+zeaxanthin (L+Z) and/or omega-3 long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acid (LCPUFA) supplementation in reducing the risk of developing advanced AMD. The study will also assess the reduction in zinc and the omission of beta-carotene from original AREDS formulation. Design Multicenter phase 3 randomized controlled clinical trial Participants Persons age 50 to 85 with bilateral intermediate AMD or advanced AMD in one eye Methods All participants were randomly assigned to: 1) placebo (n=1012); 2) L+Z (10 mg/2 mg, n=1044); 3) ω-3 LCPUFAs (eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) + docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) [650gmg/350 mg] n=1069); or 4) the combination of L+Z and ω -3 LCPUFAs (n=1078). All participants were offered a secondary randomization to 1 of 4 variations of the original AREDS formulation keeping vitamins C (500 mg), E (400 IU), and copper (2 mg) unchanged while varying zinc and beta-carotene as follows: zinc remains at the original level (80mg), lower only zinc to 25mg, omit beta-carotene only, or lower zinc to 25 mg and omit beta-carotene. Main Outcome Measures Progression to advanced AMD determined by centralized grading of annual fundus photographs. Results 4,203 participants were enrolled at 82 clinical centers located in the U.S. Population characteristics at baseline were as follows: mean age 74 years, 57% female, 97% white, 7% current smokers, 19% with prior cardiovascular disease and 44% and 50% taking statin-class cholesterol

  17. Estrogen anti-inflammatory activity in brain: a therapeutic opportunity for menopause and neurodegenerative diseases

    PubMed Central

    Vegeto, Elisabetta; Benedusi, Valeria; Maggi, Adriana

    2008-01-01

    Recent studies highlight the prominent role played by estrogens in protecting the central nervous system (CNS) against the noxious consequences of a chronic inflammatory reaction. The neurodegenerative process of several CNS diseases, including Multiple Sclerosis, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s Diseases, is associated with the activation of microglia cells, which drive the resident inflammatory response. Chronically stimulated during neurodegeneration, microglia cells are thought to provide detrimental effects on surrounding neurons. The inhibitory activity of estrogens on neuroinflammation and specifically on microglia might thus be considered as a beneficial therapeutic opportunity for delaying the onset or progression of neurodegenerative diseases; in addition, understanding the peculiar activity of this female hormone on inflammatory signalling pathways will possibly lead to the development of selected anti-inflammatory molecules. This review summarises the evidence for the involvement of microglia in neuroinflammation and the anti-inflammatory activity played by estrogens specifically in microglia. PMID:18522863

  18. X-82 to Treat Age-related Macular Degeneration

    ClinicalTrials.gov

    2016-08-16

    Age-Related Macular Degeneration (AMD); Macular Degeneration; Exudative Age-related Macular Degeneration; AMD; Macular Degeneration, Age-related, 10; Eye Diseases; Retinal Degeneration; Retinal Diseases

  19. Silver paper: the future of health promotion and preventive actions, basic research, and clinical aspects of age-related disease--a report of the European Summit on Age-Related Disease.

    PubMed

    Cruz-Jentoft, Alfonso J; Franco, Alain; Sommer, Pascal; Baeyens, Jean Pierre; Jankowska, Ewa; Maggi, Adriana; Ponikowski, Piotr; Rys, Andrzej; Szczerbinska, Kataryna; Michel, Jean-Pierre; Milewicz, Andrzej

    2009-12-01

    BACKGROUND. In September 2008, under the French Presidency of the European Union and with the support of the Polish Minister of Health, a European Summit on Age-Related Disease was organised inWroclaw (Poland). At this meeting, European politicians, gerontologists and geriatricians gathered to discuss a common approach to future challenges related to age-related disease. Politicians and decision-makers from the European Union and Ministers of Health and their deputies from many European countries raised the problems and difficulties to be tackled in a growing population with a high burden of disease, and asked scientists to write a consensus document with recommendations for future actions and decisions. Scientists and clinicians worked in parallel in three different groups, on health promotion and preventive actions, basic research in age-related disease, and clinical aspects of disease in older people. Beforehand, the format of the paper with recommendations was discussed, and it was finally agreed that, for a better understanding by decision- makers, it would be divided in two different columns: one with facts that were considered settled and agreed by most experts (under the heading We know), and a second with recommendations related to each fact (We recommend). No limit on the number of topics to be discussed was settled. After careful and detailed discussion in each group, which in most cases included the exact wording of each statement, chairpersons presented the results in a plenary session, and new input from all participants was received, until each of the statements and recommendations were accepted by a large majority. Areas with no consensus were excluded from the document. Immediately after the Summit, the chairpersons sent the document both to the main authors and to a list of experts (see footnote) who had made presentations at the summit and agreed to review and critically comment on the final document, which is presented below. As regards the

  20. Mitochondrial Dysfunction in Cancer and Neurodegenerative Diseases: Spotlight on Fatty Acid Oxidation and Lipoperoxidation Products

    PubMed Central

    Barrera, Giuseppina; Gentile, Fabrizio; Pizzimenti, Stefania; Canuto, Rosa Angela; Daga, Martina; Arcaro, Alessia; Cetrangolo, Giovanni Paolo; Lepore, Alessio; Ferretti, Carlo; Dianzani, Chiara; Muzio, Giuliana

    2016-01-01

    In several human diseases, such as cancer and neurodegenerative diseases, the levels of reactive oxygen species (ROS), produced mainly by mitochondrial oxidative phosphorylation, is increased. In cancer cells, the increase of ROS production has been associated with mtDNA mutations that, in turn, seem to be functional in the alterations of the bioenergetics and the biosynthetic state of cancer cells. Moreover, ROS overproduction can enhance the peroxidation of fatty acids in mitochondrial membranes. In particular, the peroxidation of mitochondrial phospholipid cardiolipin leads to the formation of reactive aldehydes, such as 4-hydroxynonenal (HNE) and malondialdehyde (MDA), which are able to react with proteins and DNA. Covalent modifications of mitochondrial proteins by the products of lipid peroxidation (LPO) in the course of oxidative cell stress are involved in the mitochondrial dysfunctions observed in cancer and neurodegenerative diseases. Such modifications appear to affect negatively mitochondrial integrity and function, in particular energy metabolism, adenosine triphosphate (ATP) production, antioxidant defenses and stress responses. In neurodegenerative diseases, indirect confirmation for the pathogenetic relevance of LPO-dependent modifications of mitochondrial proteins comes from the disease phenotypes associated with their genetic alterations. PMID:26907355

  1. Gene-based vaccines and immunotherapeutic strategies against neurodegenerative diseases: Potential utility and limitations.

    PubMed

    Kudrna, Jeremy J; Ugen, Kenneth E

    2015-01-01

    There has been a recent expansion of vaccination and immunotherapeutic strategies from controlling infectious diseases to the targeting of non-infectious conditions including neurodegenerative disorders. In addition to conventional vaccine and immunotherapeutic modalities, gene-based methods that express antigens for presentation to the immune system by either live viral vectors or non-viral naked DNA plasmids have been developed and evaluated. This mini-review/commentary summarizes the advantages and disadvantages, as well as the research findings to date, of both of these gene-based vaccination approaches in terms of how they can be targeted against appropriate antigens within the Alzheimer and Parkinson disease pathogenesis processes as well as potentially against targets in other neurodegenerative diseases. Most recently, the novel utilization of these viral vector and naked DNA gene-based technologies includes the delivery of immunoglobulin genes from established biologically active monoclonal antibodies. This modified passive immunotherapeutic strategy has recently been applied to deliver passive antibody immunotherapy against the pathologically relevant amyloid β protein in Alzheimer disease. The advantages and disadvantages of this technological application of gene-based immune interventions, as well as research findings to date are also summarized. In sum, it is suggested that further evaluation of gene based vaccines and immunotherapies against neurodegenerative diseases are warranted to determine their potential clinical utility.

  2. microRNAs as neuroregulators, biomarkers and therapeutic agents in neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Basak, Indranil; Patil, Ketan S; Alves, Guido; Larsen, Jan Petter; Møller, Simon Geir

    2016-02-01

    The last decade has experienced the emergence of microRNAs as a key molecular tool for the diagnosis and prognosis of human diseases. Although the focus has mostly been on cancer, neurodegenerative diseases present an exciting, yet less explored, platform for microRNA research. Several studies have highlighted the significance of microRNAs in neurogenesis and neurodegeneration, and pre-clinical studies have shown the potential of microRNAs as biomarkers. Despite this, no bona fide microRNAs have been identified as true diagnostic or prognostic biomarkers for neurodegenerative disease. This is mainly due to the lack of precisely defined patient cohorts and the variability within and between individual cohorts. However, the discovery that microRNAs exist as stable molecules at detectable levels in body fluids has opened up new avenues for microRNAs as potential biomarker candidates. Furthermore, technological developments in microRNA biology have contributed to the possible design of microRNA-mediated disease intervention strategies. The combination of these advancements, with the availability of well-defined longitudinal patient cohort, promises to not only assist in developing invaluable diagnostic tools for clinicians, but also to increase our overall understanding of the underlying heterogeneity of neurodegenerative diseases. In this review, we present a comprehensive overview of the existing knowledge of microRNAs in neurodegeneration and provide a perspective of the applicability of microRNAs as a basis for future therapeutic intervention strategies.

  3. microRNAs as neuroregulators, biomarkers and therapeutic agents in neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Basak, Indranil; Patil, Ketan S; Alves, Guido; Larsen, Jan Petter; Møller, Simon Geir

    2016-02-01

    The last decade has experienced the emergence of microRNAs as a key molecular tool for the diagnosis and prognosis of human diseases. Although the focus has mostly been on cancer, neurodegenerative diseases present an exciting, yet less explored, platform for microRNA research. Several studies have highlighted the significance of microRNAs in neurogenesis and neurodegeneration, and pre-clinical studies have shown the potential of microRNAs as biomarkers. Despite this, no bona fide microRNAs have been identified as true diagnostic or prognostic biomarkers for neurodegenerative disease. This is mainly due to the lack of precisely defined patient cohorts and the variability within and between individual cohorts. However, the discovery that microRNAs exist as stable molecules at detectable levels in body fluids has opened up new avenues for microRNAs as potential biomarker candidates. Furthermore, technological developments in microRNA biology have contributed to the possible design of microRNA-mediated disease intervention strategies. The combination of these advancements, with the availability of well-defined longitudinal patient cohort, promises to not only assist in developing invaluable diagnostic tools for clinicians, but also to increase our overall understanding of the underlying heterogeneity of neurodegenerative diseases. In this review, we present a comprehensive overview of the existing knowledge of microRNAs in neurodegeneration and provide a perspective of the applicability of microRNAs as a basis for future therapeutic intervention strategies. PMID:26608596

  4. Histochemical approaches to assess cell-to-cell transmission of misfolded proteins in neurodegenerative diseases

    PubMed Central

    Natale, G.; Pompili, E.; Biagioni, F.; Paparelli, S.; Lenzi, P.; Fornai, F.

    2013-01-01

    Formation, aggregation and transmission of abnormal proteins are common features in neurodegenerative disorders including Parkinson's disease, Alzheimer's disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, and Huntington's disease. The mechanisms underlying protein alterations in neurodegenerative diseases remain controversial. Novel findings highlighted altered protein clearing systems as common biochemical pathways which generate protein misfolding, which in turn causes protein aggregation and protein spreading. In fact, proteinaceous aggregates are prone to cell-tocell propagation. This is reminiscent of what happens in prion disorders, where the prion protein misfolds thus forming aggregates which spread to neighbouring cells. For this reason, the term prionoids is currently used to emphasize how several misfolded proteins are transmitted in neurodegenerative diseases following this prion-like pattern. Histochemical techniques including the use of specific antibodies covering both light and electron microscopy offer a powerful tool to describe these phenomena and investigate specific molecular steps. These include: prion like protein alterations; glycation of prion-like altered proteins to form advanced glycation end-products (AGEs); mechanisms of extracellular secretion; interaction of AGEs with specific receptors placed on neighbouring cells (RAGEs). The present manuscript comments on these phenomena aimed to provide a consistent scenario of the available histochemical approaches to dissect each specific step. PMID:23549464

  5. Epidemiology of Major Neurodegenerative Diseases in Women: Contribution of the Nurses’ Health Study

    PubMed Central

    Munger, Kassandra L.; Ascherio, Alberto; Grodstein, Francine

    2016-01-01

    Objectives. To review the contribution of the Nurses’ Health Study (NHS) to identifying the role of lifestyle, diet, and genetic or biological factors in several neurodegenerative diseases, including cognitive decline, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease, and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. Methods. We completed a narrative review of the publications of the NHS and NHS II between 1976 and 2016. Results. In primary findings for cognitive function, higher intake of nuts, moderate alcohol consumption, and higher physical activity levels were associated with better cognitive function. Flavonoids, physical activity, and postmenopausal hormone therapy were related to cognitive decline over 2 to 6 years. The NHS also has been integral in establishing Epstein-Barr virus infection, inadequate vitamin D nutrition, cigarette smoking, and obesity as risk factors for multiple sclerosis and inverse associations between cigarette smoking and caffeine and risk of Parkinson’s disease. Increased risk of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis has been associated with cigarette smoking and decreased risk associated with obesity. Conclusions. The NHS has provided invaluable resources on neurodegenerative diseases and contributed to their etiological understanding. We anticipate that the NHS cohorts will continue to make important contributions to the field of neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:27459462

  6. The molecular mechanisms of scrapie encephalopathy and relevance to human neurodegenerative disease.

    PubMed Central

    Lukiw, W J; Cho, H J; Kaufmann, J C; Crapper McLachlan, D R

    1990-01-01

    We have investigated alterations in the structure and function of nuclei isolated from normal and pathological brains in a number of neurodegenerative diseases including scrapie and Alzheimer's disease. Here we summarize both general and specific changes in chromatin structure, gene expression, and neuropathological features for each encephalopathy and compare them in terms of their molecular biological similarities and differences. While both scrapie and Alzheimer's disease share a number of common alterations in genomic organization and gene activity during the pathogenic process, each neurological disease appears to operate on fundamentally different mechanisms. Images Fig. 2. Fig. 3. Fig. 4A. Fig. 5A. PMID:2407330

  7. From intrinsic firing properties to selective neuronal vulnerability in neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Roselli, Francesco; Caroni, Pico

    2015-03-01

    Neurodegenerative diseases (NDDs) involve years of gradual preclinical progression. It is widely anticipated that in order to be effective, treatments should target early stages of disease, but we lack conceptual frameworks to identify and treat early manifestations relevant to disease progression. Here we discuss evidence that a focus on physiological features of neuronal subpopulations most vulnerable to NDDs, and how those features are affected in disease, points to signaling pathways controlling excitation in selectively vulnerable neurons, and to mechanisms regulating calcium and energy homeostasis. These hypotheses could be tested in neuronal stress tests involving animal models or patient-derived iPS cells.

  8. Advantage of a low glycemic index and low phosphate diet on diabetic nephropathy and aging-related diseases.

    PubMed

    Taketani, Yutaka; Shuto, Emi; Arai, Hidekazu; Nishida, Yuka; Tanaka, Rieko; Uebanso, Takashi; Yamamoto, Hironori; Yamanaka-Okumura, Hisami; Takeda, Eiji

    2007-08-01

    Diabetic nephropathy is the leading cause of end-stage renal disease (ESRD) in Japan and other Westernized countries. Over 50% of the ESRD patients die from cardiovascular events. Cardiovascular disease (CVD) in ESRD patients with diabetes mellitus (DM) are implicated in the endothelial dysfunction caused by hyperglycemia, hyperlipidemia, and hypertension, and in the vascular calcification of intimal and medial arterial blood vessels caused by hyperphosphatemia. Therefore, dietary control of hyperglycemia and hyperphosphatemia should play an important role in the management of ESRD patients with DM. Furthermore, recent findings suggest that high concentrations of serum phosphate, even if within the normal range, may be a risk factor for CVD and mortality. An in vivo study using klotho knockout mice and fibroblast growth factor 23 (FGF-23) knockout mice has revealed that correction of hyperphosphatemia and hypervitaminosis D could ameliorate the premature aging-like phenotype. A low glycemic index and low phosphate diet may provide an advantage in the prevention of aging-related diseases in healthy individuals as well as in those with chronic kidney disease.

  9. Potential role of olive oil phenolic compounds in the prevention of neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Rodríguez-Morató, Jose; Xicota, Laura; Fitó, Montse; Farré, Magí; Dierssen, Mara; de la Torre, Rafael

    2015-01-01

    Adherence to the Mediterranean Diet (MD) has been associated with a reduced incidence of neurodegenerative diseases and better cognitive performance. Virgin olive oil, the main source of lipids in the MD, is rich in minor phenolic components, particularly hydroxytyrosol (HT). HT potent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory actions have attracted researchers' attention and may contribute to neuroprotective effects credited to MD. In this review HT bioavailability and pharmacokinetics are presented prior to discussing health beneficial effects. In vitro and in vivo neuroprotective effects together with its multiple mechanisms of action are reviewed. Other microconstituents of olive oil are also considered due to their potential neuroprotective effects (oleocanthal, triterpenic acids). Finally, we discuss the potential role of HT as a therapeutic tool in the prevention of neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:25781069

  10. Bioactive Compounds from Macroalgae in the New Millennium: Implications for Neurodegenerative Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Barbosa, Mariana; Valentão, Patrícia; Andrade, Paula B.

    2014-01-01

    Marine environment has proven to be a rich source of structurally diverse and complex compounds exhibiting numerous interesting biological effects. Macroalgae are currently being explored as novel and sustainable sources of bioactive compounds for both pharmaceutical and nutraceutical applications. Given the increasing prevalence of different forms of dementia, researchers have been focusing their attention on the discovery and development of new compounds from macroalgae for potential application in neuroprotection. Neuroprotection involves multiple and complex mechanisms, which are deeply related. Therefore, compounds exerting neuroprotective effects through different pathways could present viable approaches in the management of neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. In fact, several studies had already provided promising insights into the neuroprotective effects of a series of compounds isolated from different macroalgae species. This review will focus on compounds from macroalgae that exhibit neuroprotective effects and their potential application to treat and/or prevent neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:25257784

  11. The transcription factor X-box binding protein-1 in neurodegenerative diseases

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Endoplasmic reticulum (ER) is the cellular compartment where secreted and integral membrane proteins are folded and matured. The accumulation of unfolded or misfolded proteins triggers a stress that is physiologically controlled by an adaptative protective response called Unfolded Protein Response (UPR). UPR is primordial to induce a quality control response and to restore ER homeostasis. When this adaptative response is defective, protein aggregates overwhelm cells and affect, among other mechanisms, synaptic function, signaling transduction and cell survival. Such dysfunction likely contributes to several neurodegenerative diseases that are indeed characterized by exacerbated protein aggregation, protein folding impairment, increased ER stress and UPR activation. This review briefly documents various aspects of the biology of the transcription factor XBP-1 (X-box Binding Protein-1) and summarizes recent findings concerning its putative contribution to the altered UPR response observed in various neurodegenerative disorders including Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s diseases. PMID:25216759

  12. Burden of neurodegenerative diseases in a cohort of medical examiner subjects.

    PubMed

    Uryu, Kunihiro; Haddix, Terri; Robinson, John; Nakashima-Yasuda, Hanae; Lee, Virginia M-Y; Trojanowski, John Q

    2010-05-01

    Here we report studies of the burden of neurodegenerative neuropathologies in a cohort of Medical Examiner (ME) subjects from the County of Santa Clara (California) to determine if this unique population of decedents manifested evidence of neurodegeneration that might underlie causes of death seen in an ME practice. We found that 13% of the brains from ME cases showed significant tau pathology, including 55% of those 65 years old and older and 63% of those 70 years old and older. The histochemical and immunohistochemical findings were consistent with Alzheimer's disease (AD) in 7 subjects and frontotemporal lobar degeneration (FTLD) tauopathy type in six cases. There were no cases of Parkinson's disease, dementia with Lewy Bodies or other neurodegenerative conditions. Our study suggests that decedents >65 years of age in an ME practice are afflicted by common causes of dementia such as AD and FTLD which could contribute wholly or in part to their causes of death.

  13. Application of human induced pluripotent stem cells for modeling and treating neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Payne, Natalie L; Sylvain, Aude; O'Brien, Carmel; Herszfeld, Daniella; Sun, Guizhi; Bernard, Claude C A

    2015-01-25

    The advent of human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs), reprogrammed in vitro from both healthy and disease-state human somatic cells, has triggered an enormous global research effort to realize personalized regenerative medicine for numerous degenerative conditions. hiPSCs have been generated from cells of many tissue types and can be differentiated in vitro to most somatic lineages, not only for the establishment of disease models that can be utilized as novel drug screening platforms and to study the molecular and cellular processes leading to degeneration, but also for the in vivo cell-based repair or modulation of a patient's disease profile. hiPSCs derived from patients with the neurodegenerative diseases amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, Parkinson's disease, Alzheimer's disease and multiple sclerosis have been successfully differentiated in vitro into disease-relevant cell types, including motor neurons, dopaminergic neurons and oligodendrocytes. However, the generation of functional iPSC-derived neural cells that are capable of engraftment in humans and the identification of robust disease phenotypes for modeling neurodegeneration still require several key challenges to be addressed. Here, we discuss these challenges and summarize recent progress toward the application of iPSC technology for these four common neurodegenerative diseases.

  14. Stem cells: a new paradigm for disease modeling and developing therapies for age-related macular degeneration

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Age-related macular degeneration (AMD) is the leading cause of blindness in people over age 55 in the U.S. and the developed world. This condition leads to the progressive impairment of central visual acuity. There are significant limitations in the understanding of disease progression in AMD as well as a lack of effective methods of treatment. Lately, there has been considerable enthusiasm for application of stem cell biology for both disease modeling and therapeutic application. Human embryonic stem cells and induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) have been used in cell culture assays and in vivo animal models. Recently a clinical trial was approved by FDA to investigate the safety and efficacy of the human embryonic stem cell-derived retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) transplantation in sub-retinal space of patients with dry AMD These studies suggest that stem cell research may provide both insight regarding disease development and progression, as well as direction for therapeutic innovation for the millions of patients afflicted with AMD. PMID:23452406

  15. Role of the nucleolus in neurodegenerative diseases with particular reference to the retina: a review.

    PubMed

    Sia, Paul I; Wood, John Pm; Chidlow, Glyn; Sharma, Shiwani; Craig, Jamie; Casson, Robert J

    2016-04-01

    The nucleolus has emerged as a key regulator of cellular growth and the response to stress, in addition to its traditionally understood function in ribosome biogenesis. The association between nucleolar function and neurodegenerative disease is increasingly being explored. There is also recent evidence indicating that the nucleolus may well be crucial in the development of the eye. In this present review, the role of the nucleolus in retinal development as well as in neurodegeneration with an emphasis on the retina is discussed.

  16. Targeting specific HATs for neurodegenerative disease treatment: translating basic biology to therapeutic possibilities

    PubMed Central

    Pirooznia, Sheila K.; Elefant, Felice

    2013-01-01

    Dynamic epigenetic regulation of neurons is emerging as a fundamental mechanism by which neurons adapt their transcriptional responses to specific developmental and environmental cues. While defects within the neural epigenome have traditionally been studied in the context of early developmental and heritable cognitive disorders, recent studies point to aberrant histone acetylation status as a key mechanism underlying acquired inappropriate alterations of genome structure and function in post-mitotic neurons during the aging process. Indeed, it is becoming increasingly evident that chromatin acetylation status can be impaired during the lifetime of neurons through mechanisms related to loss of function of histone acetyltransferase (HAT) activity. Several HATs have been shown to participate in vital neuronal functions such as regulation of neuronal plasticity and memory formation. As such, dysregulation of such HATs has been implicated in the pathogenesis associated with age-associated neurodegenerative diseases and cognitive decline. In order to counteract the loss of HAT function in neurodegenerative diseases, the current therapeutic strategies involve the use of small molecules called histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitors that antagonize HDAC activity and thus enhance acetylation levels. Although this strategy has displayed promising therapeutic effects, currently used HDAC inhibitors lack target specificity, raising concerns about their applicability. With rapidly evolving literature on HATs and their respective functions in mediating neuronal survival and higher order brain function such as learning and memory, modulating the function of specific HATs holds new promises as a therapeutic tool in neurodegenerative diseases. In this review, we focus on the recent progress in research regarding epigenetic histone acetylation mechanisms underlying neuronal activity and cognitive function. We discuss the current understanding of specific HDACs and HATs in

  17. The emerging use of in vivo optical imaging in the study of neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Patterson, Aileen P; Booth, Stephanie A; Saba, Reuben

    2014-01-01

    The detection and subsequent quantification of photons emitted from living tissues, using highly sensitive charged-couple device (CCD) cameras, have enabled investigators to noninvasively examine the intricate dynamics of molecular reactions in wide assortment of experimental animals under basal and pathophysiological conditions. Nevertheless, extrapolation of this in vivo optical imaging technology to the study of the mammalian brain and related neurodegenerative conditions is still in its infancy. In this review, we introduce the reader to the emerging use of in vivo optical imaging in the study of neurodegenerative diseases. We highlight the current instrumentation that is available and reporter molecules (fluorescent and bioluminescent) that are commonly used. Moreover, we examine how in vivo optical imaging using transgenic reporter mice has provided new insights into Alzheimer's disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), Prion disease, and neuronal damage arising from excitotoxicity and inflammation. Furthermore, we also touch upon studies that have utilized these technologies for the development of therapeutic strategies for neurodegenerative conditions that afflict humans.

  18. The emerging use of in vivo optical imaging in the study of neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Patterson, Aileen P; Booth, Stephanie A; Saba, Reuben

    2014-01-01

    The detection and subsequent quantification of photons emitted from living tissues, using highly sensitive charged-couple device (CCD) cameras, have enabled investigators to noninvasively examine the intricate dynamics of molecular reactions in wide assortment of experimental animals under basal and pathophysiological conditions. Nevertheless, extrapolation of this in vivo optical imaging technology to the study of the mammalian brain and related neurodegenerative conditions is still in its infancy. In this review, we introduce the reader to the emerging use of in vivo optical imaging in the study of neurodegenerative diseases. We highlight the current instrumentation that is available and reporter molecules (fluorescent and bioluminescent) that are commonly used. Moreover, we examine how in vivo optical imaging using transgenic reporter mice has provided new insights into Alzheimer's disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), Prion disease, and neuronal damage arising from excitotoxicity and inflammation. Furthermore, we also touch upon studies that have utilized these technologies for the development of therapeutic strategies for neurodegenerative conditions that afflict humans. PMID:25147799

  19. The Emerging Use of In Vivo Optical Imaging in the Study of Neurodegenerative Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Booth, Stephanie A.; Saba, Reuben

    2014-01-01

    The detection and subsequent quantification of photons emitted from living tissues, using highly sensitive charged-couple device (CCD) cameras, have enabled investigators to noninvasively examine the intricate dynamics of molecular reactions in wide assortment of experimental animals under basal and pathophysiological conditions. Nevertheless, extrapolation of this in vivo optical imaging technology to the study of the mammalian brain and related neurodegenerative conditions is still in its infancy. In this review, we introduce the reader to the emerging use of in vivo optical imaging in the study of neurodegenerative diseases. We highlight the current instrumentation that is available and reporter molecules (fluorescent and bioluminescent) that are commonly used. Moreover, we examine how in vivo optical imaging using transgenic reporter mice has provided new insights into Alzheimer's disease, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), Prion disease, and neuronal damage arising from excitotoxicity and inflammation. Furthermore, we also touch upon studies that have utilized these technologies for the development of therapeutic strategies for neurodegenerative conditions that afflict humans. PMID:25147799

  20. Use of Genetically Modified Mesenchymal Stem Cells to Treat Neurodegenerative Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Wyse, Robert D.; Dunbar, Gary L.; Rossignol, Julien

    2014-01-01

    The transplantation of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) for treating neurodegenerative disorders has received growing attention recently because these cells are readily available, easily expanded in culture, and when transplanted, survive for relatively long periods of time. Given that such transplants have been shown to be safe in a variety of applications, in addition to recent findings that MSCs have useful immunomodulatory and chemotactic properties, the use of these cells as vehicles for delivering or producing beneficial proteins for therapeutic purposes has been the focus of several labs. In our lab, the use of genetic modified MSCs to release neurotrophic factors for the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases is of particular interest. Specifically, glial cell-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF), nerve growth factor (NGF), and brain derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) have been recognized as therapeutic trophic factors for Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s and Huntington’s diseases, respectively. The aim of this literature review is to provide insights into: (1) the inherent properties of MSCs as a platform for neurotrophic factor delivery; (2) the molecular tools available for genetic manipulation of MSCs; (3) the rationale for utilizing various neurotrophic factors for particular neurodegenerative diseases; and (4) the clinical challenges of utilizing genetically modified MSCs. PMID:24463293

  1. Determination of the olfactory threshold using a piezoelectric microdispenser for neurodegenerative disease diagnostics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wallace, David B.; Taylor, David; Antohe, Bogdan V.; Achiriloaie, Ioan; Comparini, Norman; Stewart, R. Malcolm; Sanghera, Manjit K.

    2006-11-01

    Ink-jet microdispensing technology was used to develop an instrument for the quantitative determination of the olfactory threshold. An electrical pulse applied to the piezoelectric element produces a deformation that is transmitted to the fluid which results in a drop of fluid being ejected through the orifice mounted at one end of a piezoelectric tube. An electronic console actuates the piezoelectric dispensing elements and controls the number of drops that are dispensed and evaporated to create a fragrance cloud. The number of drops that are generated, evaporated and presented to the patient's nose for detection is adjusted according to a preset algorithm until the patient's threshold is discovered. Neurodegenerative disease patients tested with the developed olfactometer showed a significant elevation of their olfactory threshold as compared to normal controls. This result agrees with literature studies that indicate the sense of smell is one of the first affected by neurodegenerative disease. Through its precise control and detection capability, the digital olfactometer described in this paper can be used as an early screening tool for neurodegenerative disease through olfactory threshold determination.

  2. Genistein Improves Neuropathology and Corrects Behaviour in a Mouse Model of Neurodegenerative Metabolic Disease

    PubMed Central

    Langford-Smith, Kia J.; Langford-Smith, Alex; Brown, Jillian R.; Crawford, Brett E.; Vanier, Marie T.; Grynkiewicz, Grzegorz; Wynn, Rob F.; Wraith, J. Ed; Wegrzyn, Grzegorz; Bigger, Brian W.

    2010-01-01

    Background Neurodegenerative metabolic disorders such as mucopolysaccharidosis IIIB (MPSIIIB or Sanfilippo disease) accumulate undegraded substrates in the brain and are often unresponsive to enzyme replacement treatments due to the impermeability of the blood brain barrier to enzyme. MPSIIIB is characterised by behavioural difficulties, cognitive and later motor decline, with death in the second decade of life. Most of these neurodegenerative lysosomal storage diseases lack effective treatments. We recently described significant reductions of accumulated heparan sulphate substrate in liver of a mouse model of MPSIIIB using the tyrosine kinase inhibitor genistein. Methodology/Principal Findings We report here that high doses of genistein aglycone, given continuously over a 9 month period to MPSIIIB mice, significantly reduce lysosomal storage, heparan sulphate substrate and neuroinflammation in the cerebral cortex and hippocampus, resulting in correction of the behavioural defects observed. Improvements in synaptic vesicle protein expression and secondary storage in the cerebral cortex were also observed. Conclusions/Significance Genistein may prove useful as a substrate reduction agent to delay clinical onset of MPSIIIB and, due to its multimodal action, may provide a treatment adjunct for several other neurodegenerative metabolic diseases. PMID:21152017

  3. ACAID as a potential therapeutic approach to modulate inflammation in neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Toscano-Tejeida, D; Ibarra, A; Phillips-Farfán, B V; Fuentes-Farías, A L; Meléndez-Herrera, E

    2016-03-01

    The progressive loss of neurons and inflammation characterizes neurodegenerative diseases. Although the etiology, progression and outcome of different neurodegenerative diseases are varied, they share chronic inflammation maintained largely by central nervous system (CNS)-derived antigens recognized by T cells. Inflammation can be beneficial by recruiting immune cells to kill pathogens or to clear cell debris resulting from the primary insult. However, chronic inflammation exacerbates and perpetuates tissue damage. An increasing number of therapies that attempt to modulate neuroinflammation have been developed. However, so far none has succeeded in decreasing the secondary damage associated with chronic inflammation. A potential strategy to modulate the immune system is related to the induction of tolerance to CNS antigens. In this line, it is our hypothesis that this could be accomplished by using anterior chamber associated immune deviation (ACAID) as a strategy. Thus, we review current knowledge regarding some neurodegenerative diseases and the associated immune response that causes inflammation. In addition, we discuss further our hypothesis of the possible usefulness of ACAID as a therapeutic strategy to ameliorate damage to the CNS.

  4. Natural therapeutic agents for neurodegenerative diseases from a traditional herbal medicine Pongamia pinnata (L.) Pierre.

    PubMed

    Li, Jiayuan; Jiang, Zhe; Li, Xuezheng; Hou, Yue; Liu, Fen; Li, Ning; Liu, Xia; Yang, Lihua

    2015-01-01

    Neurodegenerative diseases are associated with neuroinflammation, manifested by over-production of nitric oxide (NO) by microglial cells. Now there still lack effective treatment and prevention for the neurodegenerative diseases. Concerning neuroinflammation mediated by microglia cell, bioactivity-guided phytochemical research of Pongamia pinnata (L.) Pierre was performed in this study. A new chlorinated flavonoid, 2′,6′-dichlore-3′, 5′-dimethoxy-[2′′,3′′:7,8]-furanoflavone (1) was identified together with 29 known compounds, including flavonoids (compounds 2-17), isoflavonoids (compounds 18-23), chalcones (compounds 24-25), flavonones (compounds 26-27), triterpenes (28-29) and alkaloid (30) from the effective dichloride methane extract of dry stem of P. pinnata (L.) Pierre. Their structures were elucidated by physicochemical and spectral methods. The anti-neuroinflammatory activities were assayed in BV-2 cells by assessing LPS-induced NO production. Then pongaglabol methyl ether (2), lonchocarpin (24) and glabrachromene II (25) were selected as potential therapeutic agents for neurodegenerative diseases because of their significant anti-neuroinflammatory activities. Furthermore, the characteristics of structure type existing in P. pinnata (L.) Pierre and brief SAR were summarized, respectively.

  5. Use of genetically modified mesenchymal stem cells to treat neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Wyse, Robert D; Dunbar, Gary L; Rossignol, Julien

    2014-01-23

    The transplantation of mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) for treating neurodegenerative disorders has received growing attention recently because these cells are readily available, easily expanded in culture, and when transplanted, survive for relatively long periods of time. Given that such transplants have been shown to be safe in a variety of applications, in addition to recent findings that MSCs have useful immunomodulatory and chemotactic properties, the use of these cells as vehicles for delivering or producing beneficial proteins for therapeutic purposes has been the focus of several labs. In our lab, the use of genetic modified MSCs to release neurotrophic factors for the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases is of particular interest. Specifically, glial cell-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF), nerve growth factor (NGF), and brain derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) have been recognized as therapeutic trophic factors for Parkinson's, Alzheimer's and Huntington's diseases, respectively. The aim of this literature review is to provide insights into: (1) the inherent properties of MSCs as a platform for neurotrophic factor delivery; (2) the molecular tools available for genetic manipulation of MSCs; (3) the rationale for utilizing various neurotrophic factors for particular neurodegenerative diseases; and (4) the clinical challenges of utilizing genetically modified MSCs.

  6. Visual Hallucinations in the Psychosis Spectrum and Comparative Information From Neurodegenerative Disorders and Eye Disease

    PubMed Central

    Waters, Flavie; Collerton, Daniel; ffytche, Dominic H.; Jardri, Renaud; Pins, Delphine; Dudley, Robert; Blom, Jan Dirk; Mosimann, Urs Peter; Eperjesi, Frank; Ford, Stephen; Larøi, Frank

    2014-01-01

    Much of the research on visual hallucinations (VHs) has been conducted in the context of eye disease and neurodegenerative conditions, but little is known about these phenomena in psychiatric and nonclinical populations. The purpose of this article is to bring together current knowledge regarding VHs in the psychosis phenotype and contrast this data with the literature drawn from neurodegenerative disorders and eye disease. The evidence challenges the traditional views that VHs are atypical or uncommon in psychosis. The weighted mean for VHs is 27% in schizophrenia, 15% in affective psychosis, and 7.3% in the general community. VHs are linked to a more severe psychopathological profile and less favorable outcome in psychosis and neurodegenerative conditions. VHs typically co-occur with auditory hallucinations, suggesting a common etiological cause. VHs in psychosis are also remarkably complex, negative in content, and are interpreted to have personal relevance. The cognitive mechanisms of VHs in psychosis have rarely been investigated, but existing studies point to source-monitoring deficits and distortions in top-down mechanisms, although evidence for visual processing deficits, which feature strongly in the organic literature, is lacking. Brain imaging studies point to the activation of visual cortex during hallucinations on a background of structural and connectivity changes within wider brain networks. The relationship between VHs in psychosis, eye disease, and neurodegeneration remains unclear, although the pattern of similarities and differences described in this review suggests that comparative studies may have potentially important clinical and theoretical implications. PMID:24936084

  7. Visual hallucinations in the psychosis spectrum and comparative information from neurodegenerative disorders and eye disease.

    PubMed

    Waters, Flavie; Collerton, Daniel; Ffytche, Dominic H; Jardri, Renaud; Pins, Delphine; Dudley, Robert; Blom, Jan Dirk; Mosimann, Urs Peter; Eperjesi, Frank; Ford, Stephen; Larøi, Frank

    2014-07-01

    Much of the research on visual hallucinations (VHs) has been conducted in the context of eye disease and neurodegenerative conditions, but little is known about these phenomena in psychiatric and nonclinical populations. The purpose of this article is to bring together current knowledge regarding VHs in the psychosis phenotype and contrast this data with the literature drawn from neurodegenerative disorders and eye disease. The evidence challenges the traditional views that VHs are atypical or uncommon in psychosis. The weighted mean for VHs is 27% in schizophrenia, 15% in affective psychosis, and 7.3% in the general community. VHs are linked to a more severe psychopathological profile and less favorable outcome in psychosis and neurodegenerative conditions. VHs typically co-occur with auditory hallucinations, suggesting a common etiological cause. VHs in psychosis are also remarkably complex, negative in content, and are interpreted to have personal relevance. The cognitive mechanisms of VHs in psychosis have rarely been investigated, but existing studies point to source-monitoring deficits and distortions in top-down mechanisms, although evidence for visual processing deficits, which feature strongly in the organic literature, is lacking. Brain imaging studies point to the activation of visual cortex during hallucinations on a background of structural and connectivity changes within wider brain networks. The relationship between VHs in psychosis, eye disease, and neurodegeneration remains unclear, although the pattern of similarities and differences described in this review suggests that comparative studies may have potentially important clinical and theoretical implications.

  8. Natural therapeutic agents for neurodegenerative diseases from a traditional herbal medicine Pongamia pinnata (L.) Pierre.

    PubMed

    Li, Jiayuan; Jiang, Zhe; Li, Xuezheng; Hou, Yue; Liu, Fen; Li, Ning; Liu, Xia; Yang, Lihua

    2015-01-01

    Neurodegenerative diseases are associated with neuroinflammation, manifested by over-production of nitric oxide (NO) by microglial cells. Now there still lack effective treatment and prevention for the neurodegenerative diseases. Concerning neuroinflammation mediated by microglia cell, bioactivity-guided phytochemical research of Pongamia pinnata (L.) Pierre was performed in this study. A new chlorinated flavonoid, 2′,6′-dichlore-3′, 5′-dimethoxy-[2′′,3′′:7,8]-furanoflavone (1) was identified together with 29 known compounds, including flavonoids (compounds 2-17), isoflavonoids (compounds 18-23), chalcones (compounds 24-25), flavonones (compounds 26-27), triterpenes (28-29) and alkaloid (30) from the effective dichloride methane extract of dry stem of P. pinnata (L.) Pierre. Their structures were elucidated by physicochemical and spectral methods. The anti-neuroinflammatory activities were assayed in BV-2 cells by assessing LPS-induced NO production. Then pongaglabol methyl ether (2), lonchocarpin (24) and glabrachromene II (25) were selected as potential therapeutic agents for neurodegenerative diseases because of their significant anti-neuroinflammatory activities. Furthermore, the characteristics of structure type existing in P. pinnata (L.) Pierre and brief SAR were summarized, respectively. PMID:25466192

  9. Ca2+, autophagy and protein degradation: thrown off balance in neurodegenerative disease.

    PubMed

    Vicencio, Jose Miguel; Lavandero, Sergio; Szabadkai, Gyorgy

    2010-02-01

    Substantial progress has been made throughout the last decades in the elucidation of the key players and mechanisms responsible for Ca2+ signal generation in both excitable and non-excitable cells. Importantly, these studies led also to the recognition that a close correlation exists between the deregulation of cellular Ca2+ homeostasis and the development of several human pathologies, including neurodegenerative disease. Notwithstanding this advances, much less is certain about the targets and mechanisms by which compromised Ca2+ signaling exerts its effects on cell function and survival. Recently it has been proposed that deregulation of cellular energy metabolism and protein turnover (synthesis, folding and degradation) are also fundamental pathomechanisms of neurodegenerative disease, pointing to the pivotal role of autophagy, a major cellular pathway controlling metabolic homeostasis. Indeed, activation of autophagy has been shown to represent a highly successful strategy to restore normal neuronal function in a variety of models of neurodegenerative disease. Here we review recent advances in elucidating Ca2+ regulation of autophagy and will highlight its relationship to neurodegeneration. PMID:20097418

  10. The Enemy within: Innate Surveillance-Mediated Cell Death, the Common Mechanism of Neurodegenerative Disease.

    PubMed

    Richards, Robert I; Robertson, Sarah A; O'Keefe, Louise V; Fornarino, Dani; Scott, Andrew; Lardelli, Michael; Baune, Bernhard T

    2016-01-01

    Neurodegenerative diseases comprise an array of progressive neurological disorders all characterized by the selective death of neurons in the central nervous system. Although, rare (familial) and common (sporadic) forms can occur for the same disease, it is unclear whether this reflects several distinct pathogenic pathways or the convergence of different causes into a common form of nerve cell death. Remarkably, neurodegenerative diseases are increasingly found to be accompanied by activation of the innate immune surveillance system normally associated with pathogen recognition and response. Innate surveillance is the cell's quality control system for the purpose of detecting such danger signals and responding in an appropriate manner. Innate surveillance is an "intelligent system," in that the manner of response is relevant to the magnitude and duration of the threat. If possible, the threat is dealt with within the cell in which it is detected, by degrading the danger signal(s) and restoring homeostasis. If this is not successful then an inflammatory response is instigated that is aimed at restricting the spread of the threat by elevating degradative pathways, sensitizing neighboring cells, and recruiting specialized cell types to the site. If the danger signal persists, then the ultimate response can include not only the programmed cell death of the original cell, but the contents of this dead cell can also bring about the death of adjacent sensitized cells. These responses are clearly aimed at destroying the ability of the detected pathogen to propagate and spread. Innate surveillance comprises intracellular, extracellular, non-cell autonomous and systemic processes. Recent studies have revealed how multiple steps in these processes involve proteins that, through their mutation, have been linked to many familial forms of neurodegenerative disease. This suggests that individuals harboring these mutations may have an amplified response to innate-mediated damage

  11. The Enemy within: Innate Surveillance-Mediated Cell Death, the Common Mechanism of Neurodegenerative Disease

    PubMed Central

    Richards, Robert I.; Robertson, Sarah A.; O'Keefe, Louise V.; Fornarino, Dani; Scott, Andrew; Lardelli, Michael; Baune, Bernhard T.

    2016-01-01

    Neurodegenerative diseases comprise an array of progressive neurological disorders all characterized by the selective death of neurons in the central nervous system. Although, rare (familial) and common (sporadic) forms can occur for the same disease, it is unclear whether this reflects several distinct pathogenic pathways or the convergence of different causes into a common form of nerve cell death. Remarkably, neurodegenerative diseases are increasingly found to be accompanied by activation of the innate immune surveillance system normally associated with pathogen recognition and response. Innate surveillance is the cell's quality control system for the purpose of detecting such danger signals and responding in an appropriate manner. Innate surveillance is an “intelligent system,” in that the manner of response is relevant to the magnitude and duration of the threat. If possible, the threat is dealt with within the cell in which it is detected, by degrading the danger signal(s) and restoring homeostasis. If this is not successful then an inflammatory response is instigated that is aimed at restricting the spread of the threat by elevating degradative pathways, sensitizing neighboring cells, and recruiting specialized cell types to the site. If the danger signal persists, then the ultimate response can include not only the programmed cell death of the original cell, but the contents of this dead cell can also bring about the death of adjacent sensitized cells. These responses are clearly aimed at destroying the ability of the detected pathogen to propagate and spread. Innate surveillance comprises intracellular, extracellular, non-cell autonomous and systemic processes. Recent studies have revealed how multiple steps in these processes involve proteins that, through their mutation, have been linked to many familial forms of neurodegenerative disease. This suggests that individuals harboring these mutations may have an amplified response to innate

  12. Computational Modelling Approaches on Epigenetic Factors in Neurodegenerative and Autoimmune Diseases and Their Mechanistic Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Khanam Irin, Afroza; Tom Kodamullil, Alpha; Gündel, Michaela; Hofmann-Apitius, Martin

    2015-01-01

    Neurodegenerative as well as autoimmune diseases have unclear aetiologies, but an increasing number of evidences report for a combination of genetic and epigenetic alterations that predispose for the development of disease. This review examines the major milestones in epigenetics research in the context of diseases and various computational approaches developed in the last decades to unravel new epigenetic modifications. However, there are limited studies that systematically link genetic and epigenetic alterations of DNA to the aetiology of diseases. In this work, we demonstrate how disease-related epigenetic knowledge can be systematically captured and integrated with heterogeneous information into a functional context using Biological Expression Language (BEL). This novel methodology, based on BEL, enables us to integrate epigenetic modifications such as DNA methylation or acetylation of histones into a specific disease network. As an example, we depict the integration of epigenetic and genetic factors in a functional context specific to Parkinson's disease (PD) and Multiple Sclerosis (MS). PMID:26636108

  13. A critical review of Vitamin C for the prevention of age-related cognitive decline and Alzheimer’s disease

    PubMed Central

    Harrison, Fiona E

    2013-01-01

    Antioxidants in the diet have long been thought to confer some level of protection against the oxidative damage that is involved in the pathology of Alzheimer’s disease as well as general cognitive decline in normal aging. Nevertheless, support for this hypothesis in the literature is equivocal. In the case of vitamin C (ascorbic acid) in particular, lack of consideration of some of the specific features of vitamin C metabolism has led to studies in which classification of participants according to vitamin C status is inaccurate, and the absence of critical information precludes the drawing of appropriate conclusions. Vitamin C levels in plasma are not always reported, and estimated daily intake from food diaries may not be accurate or reflect actual plasma values. The ability to transport ingested vitamin C from the intestines into blood is limited by the saturable sodium-dependent vitamin C transporter (SVCT1) and thus very high intakes, and the use of supplements are often erroneously considered to be of greater benefit that they really are. The current review documents differences among the studies in terms of vitamin C status of participants. Overall, there is a large body of evidence that maintaining healthy vitamin C levels can have a protective function against age-related cognitive decline and Alzheimer’s disease, but avoiding vitamin C deficiency is likely to be more beneficial than taking supplements on top of a normal, healthy diet. PMID:22366772

  14. Common drugs and treatments for cancer and age-related diseases: revitalizing answers to NCI's provocative questions

    PubMed Central

    Blagosklonny, Mikhail V.

    2012-01-01

    In 2011, The National Cancer Institute (NCI) has announced 24 provocative questions on cancer. Some of these questions have been already answered in “NCI's provocative questions on cancer: some answers to ignite discussion” (published in Oncotarget, 2011, 2: 1352.) The questions included “Why do many cancer cells die when suddenly deprived of a protein encoded by an oncogene?” “Can we extend patient survival by using approaches that keep tumors static?” “Why are some disseminated cancers cured by chemotherapy alone?” “Can we develop methods to rapidly test interventions for cancer treatment or prevention?” “Can we use our knowledge of aging to enhance prevention or treatment of cancer?” “What is the mechanism by which some drugs commonly and chronically used for other indications protect against cancer?” “How does obesity contribute to cancer risk?” I devoted a single subchapter to each the answer. As expected, the provocative questions were very diverse and numerous. Now I choose and combine, as a single problem, only three last questions, all related to common mechanisms and treatment of age-related diseases including obesity and cancer. Can we use common existing drugs for cancer prevention and treatment? Can we use some targeted “cancer-selective” agents for other diseases and … aging itself. PMID:23565531

  15. Effect of electromagnetic radiations on neurodegenerative diseases- technological revolution as a curse in disguise.

    PubMed

    Hasan, Gulam M; Sheikh, Ishfaq A; Karim, Sajjad; Haque, Absarul; Kamal, Mohammad A; Chaudhary, Adeel G; Azhar, Essam; Mirza, Zeenat

    2014-01-01

    In the present developed world, all of us are flooded with electromagnetic radiations (EMR) emanating from generation and transmission of electricity, domestic appliances and industrial equipments, to telecommunications and broadcasting. We have been exposed to EMR for last many decades; however their recent steady increase from artificial sources has been reported as millions of antennas and satellites irradiate the global population round the clock, year round. Needless to say, these are so integral to modern life that interaction with them on a daily basis is seemingly inevitable; hence, the EMR exposure load has increased to a point where their health effects are becoming a major concern. Delicate and sensitive electrical system of human body is affected by consistent penetration of electromagnetic frequencies causing DNA breakages and chromosomal aberrations. Technological innovations came with Pandora's Box of hazardous consequences including neurodegenerative disorders, hearing disabilities, diabetes, congenital abnormalities, infertility, cardiovascular diseases and cancer to name few, all on a sharp rise. Electromagnetic non-ionizing radiations pose considerable health threat with prolonged exposure. Mobile phones are usually held near to the brain and manifest progressive structural or functional alterations in neurons leading to neurodegenerative diseases and neuronal death. This has provoked awareness among both the general public and scientific community and international bodies acknowledge that further systematic research is needed. The aim of the present review was to have an insight in whether and how cumulative electro-magnetic field exposure is a risk factor for neurodegenerative disorders.

  16. Analysis of optical neural stimulation effects on neural networks affected by neurodegenerative diseases

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zverev, M.; Fanjul-Vélez, F.; Salas-García, I.; Ortega-Quijano, N.; Arce-Diego, J. L.

    2016-03-01

    The number of people in risk of developing a neurodegenerative disease increases as the life expectancy grows due to medical advances. Multiple techniques have been developed to improve patient's condition, from pharmacological to invasive electrodes approaches, but no definite cure has yet been discovered. In this work Optical Neural Stimulation (ONS) has been studied. ONS stimulates noninvasively the outer regions of the brain, mainly the neocortex. The relationship between the stimulation parameters and the therapeutic response is not totally clear. In order to find optimal ONS parameters to treat a particular neurodegenerative disease, mathematical modeling is necessary. Neural networks models have been employed to study the neural spiking activity change induced by ONS. Healthy and pathological neocortical networks have been considered to study the required stimulation to restore the normal activity. The network consisted of a group of interconnected neurons, which were assigned 2D spatial coordinates. The optical stimulation spatial profile was assumed to be Gaussian. The stimulation effects were modeled as synaptic current increases in the affected neurons, proportional to the stimulation fluence. Pathological networks were defined as the healthy ones with some neurons being inactivated, which presented no synaptic conductance. Neurons' electrical activity was also studied in the frequency domain, focusing specially on the changes of the spectral bands corresponding to brain waves. The complete model could be used to determine the optimal ONS parameters in order to achieve the specific neural spiking patterns or the required local neural activity increase to treat particular neurodegenerative pathologies.

  17. Challenges for taking primary and stem cells into clinical neurotransplantation trials for neurodegenerative disease.

    PubMed

    Dunnett, Stephen B; Rosser, Anne E

    2014-01-01

    We review the first generations of clinical trials of novel cell therapies applied to a range of neurodegenerative diseases in the context of mechanisms of functional efficacy. This in turn helps to determine the best strategies to be adopted and the potential chances for success in developing new cell therapies to clinical application in different conditions. We then consider the scientific, technical, ethical, regulatory and logistic issues to be resolved in translating effective laboratory cell-based protocols to patients in clinical trials. We draw optimistic conclusions about the likelihood of success in developing radical new approaches to a range of devastating, and currently untreatable, neurodegenerative conditions, but caution that the problems are complex and the solutions are likely to be slow and costly to achieve in order to overcome significant ethical and regulatory as well as scientific challenges.

  18. [Changes in olfaction during ageing and in certain neurodegenerative diseases: up-to-date].

    PubMed

    Bianchi, A-J; Guépet-Sordet, H; Manckoundia, P

    2015-01-01

    Olfaction is a complex sensory system, and increasing interest is being shown in the link between olfaction and cognition, notably in the elderly. In this literature review, we revisit the specific neurophysiological features of the olfactory system and odorants that lead to a durable olfactory memory and an emotional memory, for which the implicit component produces subconscious olfactory conditioning. Olfaction is known to affect cognitive abilities and mood. We also consider the impairment of olfactory function due to ageing and to neurodegenerative diseases, in particular Alzheimer's disease and Parkinson's disease, through anatomopathological changes in the peripheral and central olfactory structures. The high frequency of these olfactory disorders as well as their early occurrence in Alzheimer disease and Parkinson disease are in favour of their clinical detection in subjects suffering from these two neurodegenerative diseases. Finally, we analyse the impact of olfactory stimulation on cognitive performance and attention. Current observational data from studies in elderly patients with Alzheimer-type dementia are limited to multiple sensory stimulation methods, such as the Snoezelen method, and aromatherapy. These therapies have shown benefits for dementia-related mood and behaviour disorders in the short term, with few side effects. Since olfactory chemosensory stimulation may be beneficial, it may be proposed in patients with dementia, especially Alzheimer-type dementia, as a complementary or even alternative therapy to existing medical strategies. PMID:25304170

  19. Degradation of misfolded proteins in neurodegenerative diseases: therapeutic targets and strategies

    PubMed Central

    Ciechanover, Aaron; Kwon, Yong Tae

    2015-01-01

    Mammalian cells remove misfolded proteins using various proteolytic systems, including the ubiquitin (Ub)-proteasome system (UPS), chaperone mediated autophagy (CMA) and macroautophagy. The majority of misfolded proteins are degraded by the UPS, in which Ub-conjugated substrates are deubiquitinated, unfolded and cleaved into small peptides when passing through the narrow chamber of the proteasome. The substrates that expose a specific degradation signal, the KFERQ sequence motif, can be delivered to and degraded in lysosomes via the CMA. Aggregation-prone substrates resistant to both the UPS and the CMA can be degraded by macroautophagy, in which cargoes are segregated into autophagosomes before degradation by lysosomal hydrolases. Although most misfolded and aggregated proteins in the human proteome can be degraded by cellular protein quality control, some native and mutant proteins prone to aggregation into β-sheet-enriched oligomers are resistant to all known proteolytic pathways and can thus grow into inclusion bodies or extracellular plaques. The accumulation of protease-resistant misfolded and aggregated proteins is a common mechanism underlying protein misfolding disorders, including neurodegenerative diseases such as Huntington's disease (HD), Alzheimer's disease (AD), Parkinson's disease (PD), prion diseases and Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS). In this review, we provide an overview of the proteolytic pathways in neurons, with an emphasis on the UPS, CMA and macroautophagy, and discuss the role of protein quality control in the degradation of pathogenic proteins in neurodegenerative diseases. Additionally, we examine existing putative therapeutic strategies to efficiently remove cytotoxic proteins from degenerating neurons. PMID:25766616

  20. Multi-Channel neurodegenerative pattern analysis and its application in Alzheimer's disease characterization

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Sidong; Cai, Weidong; Wen, Lingfeng; Feng, David Dagan; Pujol, Sonia; Kikinis, Ron; Fulham, Michael J.; Eberl, Stefan; ADNI

    2014-01-01

    Neuroimaging has played an important role in non-invasive diagnosis and differentiation of neurodegenerative disorders, such as Alzheimer's disease and Mild Cognitive Impairment. Various features have been extracted from the neuroimaging data to characterize the disorders, and these features can be roughly divided into global and local features. Recent studies show a tendency of using local features in disease characterization, since they are capable of identifying the subtle disease-specific patterns associated with the effects of the disease on human brain. However, problems arise if the neuroimaging database involved multiple disorders or progressive disorders, as disorders of different types or at different progressive stages might exhibit different degenerative patterns. It is difficult for the researchers to reach consensus on what brain regions could effectively distinguish multiple disorders or multiple progression stages. In this study we proposed a Multi-Channel pattern analysis approach to identify the most discriminative local brain metabolism features for neurodegenerative disorder characterization. We compared our method to global methods and other pattern analysis methods based on clinical expertise or statistics tests. The preliminary results suggested that the proposed Multi-Channel pattern analysis method outperformed other approaches in Alzheimer's disease characterization, and meanwhile provided important insights into the underlying pathology of Alzheimer's disease and Mild Cognitive Impairment. PMID:24933011

  1. Mitochondrial dysfunction and cell death in neurodegenerative diseases through nitroxidative stress.

    PubMed

    Akbar, Mohammed; Essa, Musthafa Mohamed; Daradkeh, Ghazi; Abdelmegeed, Mohamed A; Choi, Youngshim; Mahmood, Lubna; Song, Byoung-Joon

    2016-04-15

    Mitochondria are important for providing cellular energy ATP through the oxidative phosphorylation pathway. They are also critical in regulating many cellular functions including the fatty acid oxidation, the metabolism of glutamate and urea, the anti-oxidant defense, and the apoptosis pathway. Mitochondria are an important source of reactive oxygen species leaked from the electron transport chain while they are susceptible to oxidative damage, leading to mitochondrial dysfunction and tissue injury. In fact, impaired mitochondrial function is commonly observed in many types of neurodegenerative diseases, including Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, Huntington's disease, alcoholic dementia, brain ischemia-reperfusion related injury, and others, although many of these neurological disorders have unique etiological factors. Mitochondrial dysfunction under many pathological conditions is likely to be promoted by increased nitroxidative stress, which can stimulate post-translational modifications (PTMs) of mitochondrial proteins and/or oxidative damage to mitochondrial DNA and lipids. Furthermore, recent studies have demonstrated that various antioxidants, including naturally occurring flavonoids and polyphenols as well as synthetic compounds, can block the formation of reactive oxygen and/or nitrogen species, and thus ultimately prevent the PTMs of many proteins with improved disease conditions. Therefore, the present review is aimed to describe the recent research developments in the molecular mechanisms for mitochondrial dysfunction and tissue injury in neurodegenerative diseases and discuss translational research opportunities. PMID:26883165

  2. Precision Modulation of Neurodegenerative Disease-Related Gene Expression in Human iPSC-Derived Neurons

    PubMed Central

    Heman-Ackah, Sabrina Mahalia; Bassett, Andrew Roger; Wood, Matthew John Andrew

    2016-01-01

    The ability to reprogram adult somatic cells into induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) and the subsequent development of protocols for their differentiation into disease-relevant cell types have enabled in-depth molecular analyses of multiple disease states as hitherto impossible. Neurons differentiated from patient-specific iPSCs provide a means to recapitulate molecular phenotypes of neurodegenerative diseases in vitro. However, it remains challenging to conduct precise manipulations of gene expression in iPSC-derived neurons towards modeling complex human neurological diseases. The application of CRISPR/Cas9 to mammalian systems is revolutionizing the utilization of genome editing technologies in the study of molecular contributors to the pathogenesis of numerous diseases. Here, we demonstrate that CRISPRa and CRISPRi can be used to exert precise modulations of endogenous gene expression in fate-committed iPSC-derived neurons. This highlights CRISPRa/i as a major technical advancement in accessible tools for evaluating the specific contributions of critical neurodegenerative disease-related genes to neuropathogenesis. PMID:27341390

  3. Multi-Channel neurodegenerative pattern analysis and its application in Alzheimer's disease characterization.

    PubMed

    Liu, Sidong; Cai, Weidong; Wen, Lingfeng; Feng, David Dagan; Pujol, Sonia; Kikinis, Ron; Fulham, Michael J; Eberl, Stefan

    2014-09-01

    Neuroimaging has played an important role in non-invasive diagnosis and differentiation of neurodegenerative disorders, such as Alzheimer's disease and Mild Cognitive Impairment. Various features have been extracted from the neuroimaging data to characterize the disorders, and these features can be roughly divided into global and local features. Recent studies show a tendency of using local features in disease characterization, since they are capable of identifying the subtle disease-specific patterns associated with the effects of the disease on human brain. However, problems arise if the neuroimaging database involved multiple disorders or progressive disorders, as disorders of different types or at different progressive stages might exhibit different degenerative patterns. It is difficult for the researchers to reach consensus on what brain regions could effectively distinguish multiple disorders or multiple progression stages. In this study we proposed a Multi-Channel pattern analysis approach to identify the most discriminative local brain metabolism features for neurodegenerative disorder characterization. We compared our method to global methods and other pattern analysis methods based on clinical expertise or statistics tests. The preliminary results suggested that the proposed Multi-Channel pattern analysis method outperformed other approaches in Alzheimer's disease characterization, and meanwhile provided important insights into the underlying pathology of Alzheimer's disease and Mild Cognitive Impairment.

  4. [Changes in olfaction during ageing and in certain neurodegenerative diseases: up-to-date].

    PubMed

    Bianchi, A-J; Guépet-Sordet, H; Manckoundia, P

    2015-01-01

    Olfaction is a complex sensory system, and increasing interest is being shown in the link between olfaction and cognition, notably in the elderly. In this literature review, we revisit the specific neurophysiological features of the olfactory system and odorants that lead to a durable olfactory memory and an emotional memory, for which the implicit component produces subconscious olfactory conditioning. Olfaction is known to affect cognitive abilities and mood. We also consider the impairment of olfactory function due to ageing and to neurodegenerative diseases, in particular Alzheimer's disease and Parkinson's disease, through anatomopathological changes in the peripheral and central olfactory structures. The high frequency of these olfactory disorders as well as their early occurrence in Alzheimer disease and Parkinson disease are in favour of their clinical detection in subjects suffering from these two neurodegenerative diseases. Finally, we analyse the impact of olfactory stimulation on cognitive performance and attention. Current observational data from studies in elderly patients with Alzheimer-type dementia are limited to multiple sensory stimulation methods, such as the Snoezelen method, and aromatherapy. These therapies have shown benefits for dementia-related mood and behaviour disorders in the short term, with few side effects. Since olfactory chemosensory stimulation may be beneficial, it may be proposed in patients with dementia, especially Alzheimer-type dementia, as a complementary or even alternative therapy to existing medical strategies.

  5. Modulation of the Kynurenine Pathway for the Potential Treatment of Neurodegenerative Diseases

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Courtney, Stephen; Scheel, Andreas

    Modulation of tryptophan metabolism and in particular the kynurenine pathway is of considerable interest in the discovery of potential new treatments for neurodegenerative diseases. A number of small molecule inhibitors of the kynurenine metabolic pathway enzymes have been identified over recent years; a summary of these and their utility has been reviewed in this chapter. In particular, inhibitors of kynurenine monooxygenase represent an opportunity to develop a therapy for Huntington's disease; progress in the optimization of small molecule inhibitors of this enzyme is also described.

  6. Pathogenic Protein Seeding in Alzheimer’s Disease and Other Neurodegenerative Disorders

    PubMed Central

    Jucker, Mathias; Walker, Lary C.

    2011-01-01

    The misfolding and aggregation of specific proteins is a seminal occurrence in a remarkable variety of neurodegenerative disorders. In Alzheimer’s disease (the most prevalent cerebral proteopathy), the two principal aggregating proteins are β-amyloid (Aβ) and tau. The abnormal assemblies formed by conformational variants of these proteins range in size from small oligomers to the characteristic lesions that are visible by optical microscopy, such as senile plaques and neurofibrillary tangles. Pathologic similarities with prion disease suggest that the formation and spread of these proteinaceous lesions might involve a common molecular mechanism – corruptive protein templating. Experimentally, cerebral β-amyloidosis can be exogenously induced by exposure to dilute brain extracts containing aggregated Aβ seeds. The amyloid-inducing agent probably is Aβ itself, in a conformation generated most effectively in the living brain. Once initiated, Aβ lesions proliferate within and among brain regions. The induction process is governed by the structural and biochemical nature of the Aβ seed, as well as the attributes of the host, reminiscent of pathogenically variant prion strains. The concept of prion-like induction and spreading of pathogenic proteins recently has been expanded to include aggregates of tau, α-synuclein, huntingtin, superoxide dismutase-1, and TDP-43, which characterize such human neurodegenerative disorders as frontotemporal lobar degeneration, Parkinson’s/Lewy body disease, Huntington’s disease, and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. Our recent finding that the most effective Aβ seeds are small and soluble intensifies the search in bodily fluids for misfolded protein seeds that are upstream in the proteopathic cascade, and thus could serve as predictive diagnostics and the targets of early, mechanism-based interventions. Establishing the clinical implications of corruptive protein templating will require further mechanistic and epidemiologic

  7. Applications of Surface Plasmon Resonance for Characterization of Molecules Important in the Pathogenesis and Treatment of Neurodegenerative Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Wittenberg, Nathan J.; Wootla, Bharath; Jordan, Luke R.; Denic, Aleksandar; Warrington, Arthur E.; Oh, Sang-Hyun; Rodriguez, Moses

    2014-01-01

    Characterization of binding kinetics and affinity between a potential new drug and its receptor are key steps in the development of new drugs. Among the techniques available to determine binding affinities, surface plasmon resonance has emerged as the gold standard because it can measure binding and dissociation rates in real-time in a label-free fashion. Surface plasmon resonance is now finding applications in the characterization of molecules for treatment of neurodegenerative diseases, characterization of molecules associated with pathogenesis of neurodegenerative diseases and detection of neurodegenerative disease biomarkers. In addition it has been used in the characterization of a new class of natural autoantibodies that have therapeutic potential in a number of neurologic diseases. In this review we will introduce surface plasmon resonance and describe some applications of the technique that pertain to neurodegenerative disorders and their treatment. PMID:24625008

  8. Mechanism of All-trans-retinal Toxicity with Implications for Stargardt Disease and Age-related Macular Degeneration*

    PubMed Central

    Chen, Yu; Okano, Kiichiro; Maeda, Tadao; Chauhan, Vishal; Golczak, Marcin; Maeda, Akiko; Palczewski, Krzysztof

    2012-01-01

    Compromised clearance of all-trans-retinal (atRAL), a component of the retinoid cycle, increases the susceptibility of mouse retina to acute light-induced photoreceptor degeneration. Abca4−/−Rdh8−/− mice featuring defective atRAL clearance were used to examine the one or more underlying molecular mechanisms, because exposure to intense light causes severe photoreceptor degeneration in these animals. Here we report that bright light exposure of Abca4−/−Rdh8−/− mice increased atRAL levels in the retina that induced rapid NADPH oxidase-mediated overproduction of intracellular reactive oxygen species (ROS). Moreover, such ROS generation was inhibited by blocking phospholipase C and inositol 1,4,5-trisphosphate-induced Ca2+ release, indicating that activation occurs upstream of NADPH oxidase-mediated ROS generation. Because multiple upstream G protein-coupled receptors can activate phospholipase C, we then tested the effects of antagonists of serotonin 2A (5-HT2AR) and M3-muscarinic (M3R) receptors and found they both protected Abca4−/−Rdh8−/− mouse retinas from light-induced degeneration. Thus, a cascade of signaling events appears to mediate the toxicity of atRAL in light-induced photoreceptor degeneration of Abca4−/−Rdh8−/− mice. A similar mechanism may be operative in human Stargardt disease and age-related macular degeneration. PMID:22184108

  9. Overnutrition Determines LPS Regulation of Mycotoxin Induced Neurotoxicity in Neurodegenerative Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Martins, Ian James

    2015-01-01

    Chronic neurodegenerative diseases are now associated with obesity and diabetes and linked to the developing and developed world. Interests in healthy diets have escalated that may prevent neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease. The global metabolic syndrome involves lipoprotein abnormalities and insulin resistance and is the major disorder for induction of neurological disease. The effects of bacterial lipopolysaccharides (LPS) on dyslipidemia and NAFLD indicate that the clearance and metabolism of fungal mycotoxins are linked to hypercholesterolemia and amyloid beta oligomers. LPS and mycotoxins are associated with membrane lipid disturbances with effects on cholesterol interacting proteins, lipoprotein metabolism, and membrane apo E/amyloid beta interactions relevant to hypercholesterolemia with close connections to neurological diseases. The influence of diet on mycotoxin metabolism has accelerated with the close association between mycotoxin contamination from agricultural products such as apple juice, grains, alcohol, and coffee. Cholesterol efflux in lipoproteins and membrane cholesterol are determined by LPS with involvement of mycotoxin on amyloid beta metabolism. Nutritional interventions such as diets low in fat/carbohydrate/cholesterol have become of interest with relevance to low absorption of lipophilic LPS and mycotoxin into lipoproteins with rapid metabolism of mycotoxin to the liver with the prevention of neurodegeneration. PMID:26690419

  10. Overnutrition Determines LPS Regulation of Mycotoxin Induced Neurotoxicity in Neurodegenerative Diseases.

    PubMed

    Martins, Ian James

    2015-01-01

    Chronic neurodegenerative diseases are now associated with obesity and diabetes and linked to the developing and developed world. Interests in healthy diets have escalated that may prevent neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson's and Alzheimer's disease. The global metabolic syndrome involves lipoprotein abnormalities and insulin resistance and is the major disorder for induction of neurological disease. The effects of bacterial lipopolysaccharides (LPS) on dyslipidemia and NAFLD indicate that the clearance and metabolism of fungal mycotoxins are linked to hypercholesterolemia and amyloid beta oligomers. LPS and mycotoxins are associated with membrane lipid disturbances with effects on cholesterol interacting proteins, lipoprotein metabolism, and membrane apo E/amyloid beta interactions relevant to hypercholesterolemia with close connections to neurological diseases. The influence of diet on mycotoxin metabolism has accelerated with the close association between mycotoxin contamination from agricultural products such as apple juice, grains, alcohol, and coffee. Cholesterol efflux in lipoproteins and membrane cholesterol are determined by LPS with involvement of mycotoxin on amyloid beta metabolism. Nutritional interventions such as diets low in fat/carbohydrate/cholesterol have become of interest with relevance to low absorption of lipophilic LPS and mycotoxin into lipoproteins with rapid metabolism of mycotoxin to the liver with the prevention of neurodegeneration. PMID:26690419

  11. Recent advances in iPSC technologies involving cardiovascular and neurodegenerative disease modeling.

    PubMed

    Csöbönyeiová, Mária; Danišovič, Ľuboš; Polák, Štefan

    2016-01-01

    Cardiovascular and neurodegenerative diseases are the most common health threats in developed countries. Limited cell derivation and cell number in cardiac tissue makes it difficult to study the cardiovascular disease using the existing cardiac cell model. Regarding the neurodegenerative disorders, the most potential sources of cell therapeutics such as fetal-derived primary neurons and human embryonic stem cells (ESCs) are associated with ethical or technical limitations. The successful derivation of human-induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) by de-differentiation of somatic cells offers significant potential to overcome hurdles in the field of the replacement therapy. Human iPSCs are functionally similar to human embryonic stem cells, and can be derived autologously without the ethical challenges associated with human ESCs. The iPSCs can, in turn, be differentiated into all cell types including neurons, cardiac cells, blood and liver cells, etc. Recently, target tissues derived from human iPSCs such as cardiomyocytes (CMs) or neurons have been used for new disease modeling and regenerative medicine therapies. Diseases models could be advantageous in the development of personalized medicine of various pathological conditions. This paper reviews efforts aimed at both the practical development of iPSCs, differentiation to neural/cardiac lineages, and the further use of these iPSCs-derived cells for disease modeling, as well as drug toxicity testing. PMID:26492069

  12. The Central Biobank and Virtual Biobank of BIOMARKAPD: A Resource for Studies on Neurodegenerative Diseases

    PubMed Central

    Reijs, Babette L. R.; Teunissen, Charlotte E.; Goncharenko, Nikolai; Betsou, Fay; Blennow, Kaj; Baldeiras, Inês; Brosseron, Frederic; Cavedo, Enrica; Fladby, Tormod; Froelich, Lutz; Gabryelewicz, Tomasz; Gurvit, Hakan; Kapaki, Elisabeth; Koson, Peter; Kulic, Luka; Lehmann, Sylvain; Lewczuk, Piotr; Lleó, Alberto; Maetzler, Walter; de Mendonça, Alexandre; Miller, Anne-Marie; Molinuevo, José L.; Mollenhauer, Brit; Parnetti, Lucilla; Rot, Uros; Schneider, Anja; Simonsen, Anja Hviid; Tagliavini, Fabrizio; Tsolaki, Magda; Verbeek, Marcel M.; Verhey, Frans R. J.; Zboch, Marzena; Winblad, Bengt; Scheltens, Philip; Zetterberg, Henrik; Visser, Pieter Jelle

    2015-01-01

    Biobanks are important resources for biomarker discovery and assay development. Biomarkers for Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease (BIOMARKAPD) is a European multicenter study, funded by the EU Joint Programme-Neurodegenerative Disease Research, which aims to improve the clinical use of body fluid markers for the diagnosis and prognosis of Alzheimer’s disease (AD) and Parkinson’s disease (PD). The objective was to standardize the assessment of existing assays and to validate novel fluid biomarkers for AD and PD. To support the validation of novel biomarkers and assays, a central and a virtual biobank for body fluids and associated data from subjects with neurodegenerative diseases have been established. In the central biobank, cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) and blood samples were collected according to the BIOMARKAPD standardized pre-analytical procedures and stored at Integrated BioBank of Luxembourg. The virtual biobank provides an overview of available CSF, plasma, serum, and DNA samples at each site. Currently, at the central biobank of BIOMARKAPD samples are available from over 400 subjects with normal cognition, mild cognitive impairment (MCI), AD, frontotemporal dementia (FTD), vascular dementia, multiple system atrophy, progressive supranuclear palsy, PD, PD with dementia, and dementia with Lewy bodies. The virtual biobank contains information on over 8,600 subjects with varying diagnoses from 21 local biobanks. A website has been launched to enable sample requests from the central biobank and virtual biobank. PMID:26528237

  13. Recent advances in iPSC technologies involving cardiovascular and neurodegenerative disease modeling.

    PubMed

    Csöbönyeiová, Mária; Danišovič, Ľuboš; Polák, Štefan

    2016-01-01

    Cardiovascular and neurodegenerative diseases are the most common health threats in developed countries. Limited cell derivation and cell number in cardiac tissue makes it difficult to study the cardiovascular disease using the existing cardiac cell model. Regarding the neurodegenerative disorders, the most potential sources of cell therapeutics such as fetal-derived primary neurons and human embryonic stem cells (ESCs) are associated with ethical or technical limitations. The successful derivation of human-induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) by de-differentiation of somatic cells offers significant potential to overcome hurdles in the field of the replacement therapy. Human iPSCs are functionally similar to human embryonic stem cells, and can be derived autologously without the ethical challenges associated with human ESCs. The iPSCs can, in turn, be differentiated into all cell types including neurons, cardiac cells, blood and liver cells, etc. Recently, target tissues derived from human iPSCs such as cardiomyocytes (CMs) or neurons have been used for new disease modeling and regenerative medicine therapies. Diseases models could be advantageous in the development of personalized medicine of various pathological conditions. This paper reviews efforts aimed at both the practical development of iPSCs, differentiation to neural/cardiac lineages, and the further use of these iPSCs-derived cells for disease modeling, as well as drug toxicity testing.

  14. Exposure to lipophilic chemicals as a cause of neurological impairments, neurodevelopmental disorders and neurodegenerative diseases

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Many studies have associated environmental exposure to chemicals with neurological impairments (NIs) including neuropathies, cognitive, motor and sensory impairments; neurodevelopmental disorders (NDDs) including autism and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD); neurodegenerative diseases (NDGs) including Alzheimer′s disease, Parkinson's disease and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). The environmental chemicals shown to induce all these diseases include persistent organic pollutants (POPs), the plastic exudates bisphenol A and phthalates, low molecular weight hydrocarbons (LMWHCs) and polynuclear aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs). It is reported here that though these chemicals differ widely in their chemical properties, reactivities and known points of attack in humans, a common link does exist between them. All are lipophilic species found in serum and they promote the sequential absorption of otherwise non-absorbed toxic hydrophilic species causing these diseases. PMID:24678247

  15. Exposure to lipophilic chemicals as a cause of neurological impairments, neurodevelopmental disorders and neurodegenerative diseases.

    PubMed

    Zeliger, Harold I

    2013-09-01

    Many studies have associated environmental exposure to chemicals with neurological impairments (NIs) including neuropathies, cognitive, motor and sensory impairments; neurodevelopmental disorders (NDDs) including autism and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD); neurodegenerative diseases (NDGs) including Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). The environmental chemicals shown to induce all these diseases include persistent organic pollutants (POPs), the plastic exudates bisphenol A and phthalates, low molecular weight hydrocarbons (LMWHCs) and polynuclear aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs). It is reported here that though these chemicals differ widely in their chemical properties, reactivities and known points of attack in humans, a common link does exist between them. All are lipophilic species found in serum and they promote the sequential absorption of otherwise non-absorbed toxic hydrophilic species causing these diseases.

  16. Gender differences in age-related decline in glomerular filtration rates in healthy people and chronic kidney disease patients

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Since men with chronic kidney disease (CKD) progress faster than women, an accurate assessment of CKD progression rates should be based on gender differences in age-related decline of glomerular filtration rate (GFR) in healthy individuals. Methods A Chinese sample population from a stratified, multistage, and clustered CKD screening study was classified into healthy, at-risk, and CKD groups. The gender differences in estimated GFR (eGFR) and age-related eGFR decline were calculated for each group after controlling for blood pressure, fasting glucose levels, serum lipids levels, education level, and smoking status. After referencing to the healthy group, gender-specific multivariate-adjusted rates of decline in eGFR and differences in the rates of decline were calculated for both CKD and at-risk groups. Results The healthy, at-risk, and CKD groups consisted of 4569, 7434, and 1573 people, respectively. In all the 3 groups, the multivariate-adjusted eGFRs in men were lower than the corresponding eGFRs in women. In addition, in the healthy and at-risk groups, the rates of decline in eGFR in men were lower than the corresponding rates of decline in women (healthy group: 0.51 mL·min-1·1.73 m-2·yr-1 vs. 0.74 mL·min-1·1.73 m-2·yr-1 and at-risk group: 0.60 mL·min-1·1.73 m-2·yr-1 vs. 0.73 mL·min-1·1.73 m-2·yr-1). However, in the CKD group, the rates of decline in eGFR in men were similar to those in women (0.96 mL·min-1·1.73 m-2·yr-1 vs. 0.91 mL·min-1·1.73 m-2·yr-1). However, after referencing to the healthy group, the rates of decline in eGFR in men in the at-risk and CKD groups were greater faster than the corresponding rates in women (at-risk group: 0.10 mL·min-1·1.73 m-2·yr-1 vs. -0.03 mL·min-1·1.73 m-2·yr-1 and CKD group: 0.44 mL·min-1·1.73 m-2·yr-1 vs. 0.15 mL·min-1·1.73 m-2·yr-1). Conclusion To accurately assess gender differences in CKD progression rates, gender differences in age-related decline in GFR should be considered

  17. Insight into the Dissociation of Behavior from Histology in Synucleinopathies and in Related Neurodegenerative Diseases.

    PubMed

    Sekiyama, Kazunari; Takamatsu, Yoshiki; Koike, Wakako; Waragai, Masaaki; Takenouchi, Takato; Sugama, Shuei; Hashimoto, Makoto

    2016-03-31

    Recent clinical trials using immunization approaches against Alzheimer's disease (AD) have failed to demonstrate improved cognitive functions in patients, despite potent suppression in the formation of both senile plaques and other amyloid-β deposits in postmortem brains. Similarly, we observed that treatment with ibuprofen, a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug, was effective in improving the histopathology, such as reducing both protein aggregation and glial activation, in the brains of transgenic mice expressing dementia with Lewy bodies-linked P123H β-synuclein. In contrast, only a small improvement in cognitive functions was observed in these mice. Collectively, it is predicted that histology does not correlate with behavior that is resilient and resistant to therapeutic stimuli. Notably, such a 'discrepancy between histology and behavior' is reminiscent of AD-like pathologies and incidental Lewy bodies, which are frequently encountered in postmortem brains of the elderly who had been asymptomatic for memory loss and Parkinsonism during their lives. We suggest that 'the discrepancy between histology and behavior' may be a universal feature that is associated with various aspects of neurodegenerative diseases. Furthermore, given that the cognitive reserve is specifically observed in human brains, human behavior may be evolutionally distinct from that in other animals, thus, contributing to the differential efficiency of therapy between human and lower animals, an important issue in the therapy of neurodegenerative diseases. Overall, it is important to better understand 'the discrepancy between histology and behavior' in the mechanism of neurodegeneration for the development of effective therapies against neurodegenerative diseases. PMID:27031478

  18. Environmental pollutants as risk factors for neurodegenerative disorders: Alzheimer and Parkinson diseases

    PubMed Central

    Chin-Chan, Miguel; Navarro-Yepes, Juliana; Quintanilla-Vega, Betzabet

    2015-01-01

    Neurodegenerative diseases including Alzheimer (AD) and Parkinson (PD) have attracted attention in last decades due to their high incidence worldwide. The etiology of these diseases is still unclear; however the role of the environment as a putative risk factor has gained importance. More worryingly is the evidence that pre- and post-natal exposures to environmental factors predispose to the onset of neurodegenerative diseases in later life. Neurotoxic metals such as lead, mercury, aluminum, cadmium and arsenic, as well as some pesticides and metal-based nanoparticles have been involved in AD due to their ability to increase beta-amyloid (Aβ) peptide and the phosphorylation of Tau protein (P-Tau), causing senile/amyloid plaques and neurofibrillary tangles (NFTs) characteristic of AD. The exposure to lead, manganese, solvents and some pesticides has been related to hallmarks of PD such as mitochondrial dysfunction, alterations in metal homeostasis and aggregation of proteins such as α-synuclein (α-syn), which is a key constituent of Lewy bodies (LB), a crucial factor in PD pathogenesis. Common mechanisms of environmental pollutants to increase Aβ, P-Tau, α-syn and neuronal death have been reported, including the oxidative stress mainly involved in the increase of Aβ and α-syn, and the reduced activity/protein levels of Aβ degrading enzyme (IDE)s such as neprilysin or insulin IDE. In addition, epigenetic mechanisms by maternal nutrient supplementation and exposure to heavy metals and pesticides have been proposed to lead phenotypic diversity and susceptibility to neurodegenerative diseases. This review discusses data from epidemiological and experimental studies about the role of environmental factors in the development of idiopathic AD and PD, and their mechanisms of action. PMID:25914621

  19. Cannabinoid receptor signalling in neurodegenerative diseases: a potential role for membrane fluidity disturbance

    PubMed Central

    Maccarrone, M; Bernardi, G; Agrò, A Finazzi; Centonze, D

    2011-01-01

    Type-1 cannabinoid receptor (CB1) is the most abundant G-protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) in the brain. CB1 and its