Article

Stress, exercise, and Alzheimer's disease: a neurovascular pathway.

University of California San Diego, School of Medicine, Department of Psychiatry, San Diego, CA, USA.
Medical Hypotheses (Impact Factor: 1.15). 03/2011; 76(6):847-54. DOI: 10.1016/j.mehy.2011.02.034
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Genetic factors are known to play a role in Alzheimer's disease (AD) vulnerability, yet less than 1% of incident AD cases are directly linked to genetic causes, suggesting that environmental variables likely play a role in the majority of cases. Several recent human and animal studies have examined the effects of behavioral factors, specifically psychological stress and exercise, on AD vulnerability. Numerous animal studies have found that, while stress exacerbates neuropathological changes associated with AD, exercise reduces these changes. Some human studies suggest that psychological stress can increase the risk of developing AD, while other studies suggest that exercise can significantly reduce AD risk. Most animal studies investigating the mechanisms responsible for the effects of these behavioral factors have focused on neuronal processes, including the effects of stress hormones and neurotrophic factors on the neuropathological hallmarks of AD, namely amyloid-beta (Aβ) deposition and tau-phosphorylation. However, cumulative evidence indicates that, in humans, AD is associated with the presence of cerebrovascular disease, and cardiovascular risk factors are associated with increased risk of developing AD. There is an extensive literature demonstrating that behavioral factors, particularly stress and exercise, can powerfully modulate the pathophysiology of vascular disease. Thus, the following model proposes that the influence of stress and exercise on AD risk may be partially due to the effects of these behavioral factors on vascular homeostasis and pathology. These effects are likely due to both indirect modification of AD risk through alterations in vascular risk factors, such as hypertension, diabetes, and aortic stiffening, as well as direct influence on the cerebrovasculature, including changes in cerebral blood flow, angiogenesis, and vascular disease. Future studies examining the effects of behavioral factors on AD risk should incorporate measures of both peripheral and cerebral vascular function to further our understanding of the mechanisms by which behavior can modify AD susceptibility. Greater knowledge of the molecular mechanisms behind these behavioral effects would further our understanding of the disease and lead to innovative treatment and preventive approaches.

0 Followers
 · 
148 Views
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Parkinson's disease and Alzheimer's disease (AD) are recognized to coexist on a spectrum of neurodegeneration, and it has been proposed that molecular interactions among pathogenic proteins are a basis for the overlap between these two diseases. We instead hypothesized that degeneration of the nigrostriatal dopaminergic system enhances the clinical penetrance of early-stage AD. To determine the effect of striatal dopamine (DA) on the pathological effects in an experimental model of AD, APPSWE /PS1ΔE9 mice received striatal injections of the neurotoxin 6-hydroxydopamine (6OHDA). Animals were tested in a Barnes maze protocol and in a water T-maze protocol at different ages to determine the onset of cognitive impairment. APPSWE /PS1ΔE9 mice that received 6OHDA injections showed significant impairment in Barnes maze performance at an earlier age than controls. Additionally, at 12 months of age, APPswe /PS1ΔE9 + 6OHDA mice demonstrated worse behavioral flexibility than other groups in a task-switch phase of the water T-maze. To determine the neuroprotective effects of dopaminergic neurotransmission against amyloid-β42 (Aβ42 ) toxicity, neuronal branch order and dendrite length were quantified in primary medium spiny neuron (MSN) cultures pretreated with increasing doses of the D1 and D2 receptor agonists before being exposed to oligomerized Aβ42 . Although there were no differences in Aβ peptide levels or plaque burden among the groups, in murine MSN culture dopaminergic agonists prevented a toxic response to Aβ42. Depletion of DA in the striatum exacerbated the cognitive impairment seen in a mouse model of early-stage AD; this may be due to a protective effect of dopaminergic innervation against Aβ striatal neurotoxicity. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
    Journal of Neuroscience Research 03/2015; DOI:10.1002/jnr.23592 · 2.73 Impact Factor
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: In this study, we examined 3-month-old female mice from the senescence-accelerated prone mouse 8 strain and age-matched homologous normal aging female mice from the senescence accelerated- resistant mouse 1 strain. Mice from each strain were housed in an enriched environment (including a platform, running wheels, tunnel, and some toys) or a standard environment for 3 months. The mice housed in the enriched environment exhibited shorter escape latencies and a greater percentage of time in the target quadrant in the Morris water maze test, and they exhibited reduced errors and longer latencies in step-down avoidance experiments compared with mice housed in the standard environment. Correspondently, brain-derived neurotrophic factor mRNA and protein expression in the hippocampus was significantly higher in mice housed in the enriched environment compared with those housed in the standard environment, and the level of hippocampal brain-derived neurotrophic factor protein was positively correlated with the learning and memory abilities of mice from the senescence-accelerated prone mouse 8 strain. These results suggest that an enriched environment improved cognitive performance in mice form the senescence-accelerated prone mouse 8 strain by increasing brain-derived neurotrophic factor expression in the hippocampus.
    Neural Regeneration Research 08/2012; 7(23):1797-804. DOI:10.3969/j.issn.1673-5374.2012.23.006 · 0.23 Impact Factor
  • Source

Full-text (2 Sources)

Download
56 Downloads
Available from
Jun 10, 2014