Cerebrovascular Damage as a Cause for Alzheimers Disease
C. Humpel and J. Marksteiner
Pages 341-347 (7)
Alzheimers disease is a progressive brain disorder that gradually destroys a patients memory function and ability to carry out daily activities. According to the prevailing amyloid cascade hypothesis, Alzheimers disease is initiated by amyloid ß-peptide accumulation leading to neuronal toxicity. The neurofibrillary tangle deriving from hyperphosphorylated tau and synapse loss are also key features for Alzheimers disease. Recent studies revealed a significant comorbidity of Alzheimers disease and cerebrovascular disease suggesting that cerebrovascular dysregulation is an important feature of Alzheimers disease. This mini-review will discuss the hypothesis that a dysfunction of the vascular system may result in damage of the neurovascular unit, initiating a cascade of events. An overlap with other forms of cognitive impairment, such as mild cognitive impairment, or vascular dementia will be discussed.
vascular system, alzheimer, vascular dementia, hypothesis, cascade
Laboratory of Exp. Alzheimer's Research/Laboratory of Psychiatry, Dep. of Psychiatry, Anichstr.35, A-6020 Innsbruck, Austria.