Adult hippocampal neurogenesis and its role in Alzheimers diseaseReport as inadecuate

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Molecular Neurodegeneration

, 6:85

First Online: 22 December 2011Received: 23 November 2011Accepted: 22 December 2011


The hippocampus, a brain area critical for learning and memory, is especially vulnerable to damage at early stages of Alzheimer-s disease AD. Emerging evidence has indicated that altered neurogenesis in the adult hippocampus represents an early critical event in the course of AD. Although causal links have not been established, a variety of key molecules involved in AD pathogenesis have been shown to impact new neuron generation, either positively or negatively. From a functional point of view, hippocampal neurogenesis plays an important role in structural plasticity and network maintenance. Therefore, dysfunctional neurogenesis resulting from early subtle disease manifestations may in turn exacerbate neuronal vulnerability to AD and contribute to memory impairment, whereas enhanced neurogenesis may be a compensatory response and represent an endogenous brain repair mechanism. Here we review recent findings on alterations of neurogenesis associated with pathogenesis of AD, and we discuss the potential of neurogenesis-based diagnostics and therapeutic strategies for AD.

KeywordsAlzheimer-s disease adult neurogenesis hippocampus neural stem cell List of abbreviations usedAβamyloid-β

ADAlzheimer-s disease

AICDAPP intracellular domain

APPamyloid precursor protein



DGdentate gyrus

DGCdentate granule cell

ECentorhinal cortex

EEenriched environment

FADFamilial Alzheimer-s disease

LTPlong-term potentiation

NPCneural progenitor cell

NSCneural stem cell


sAPPαsoluble amyloid precursor protein alpha

SGZsubgranular zone

SVZsubventricular zone

3xTg-ADtriple transgenic mice.

Electronic supplementary materialThe online version of this article doi:10.1186-1750-1326-6-85 contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.

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Author: Yangling Mu - Fred H Gage


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