The neuronal nicotinic alpha7-acetylcholine receptor (α7-nAChR) is a promising and attractive drug target for improving cognitive
deficits in neuropsychiatric and neurological disorders such as Alzheimer's disease (AD). α7-nAChR belongs to the family of
ligand gated ion channels. α7-nAChR is expressed in key brain regions (e.g. pre- and frontal cortex, hippocampus). It is involved in essential
cognitive functions such as memory, thinking, comprehension, learning capacity, calculation, orientation, language, and judgment.
α7-nAChR binds to amyloid peptide (Aβ) inducing either receptor activation or inhibition in an Aβ concentration-dependent mode. Aβ
oligomers induce Τ phosphorylation via α7-nAChR activation. α7-nAChR agonists and/or α7-nAChR positive allosteric modulators may
be useful in AD therapy. The current review enlightens: (i) α7-nAChR neurobiology, (ii) α7-nAChR role in cognition and (iii) in AD, and
(iv) the clinical status of the most promising molecules for the treatment of cognitive dysfunction in AD.