IMR Press / FBL / Volume 19 / Issue 8 / DOI: 10.2741/4285

Frontiers in Bioscience-Landmark (FBL) is published by IMR Press from Volume 26 Issue 5 (2021). Previous articles were published by another publisher on a subscription basis, and they are hosted by IMR Press on imrpress.com as a courtesy and upon agreement with Frontiers in Bioscience.

Open Access Article
An update on drug treatment options of Alzheimer's disease
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1 Rudolf-Boehm-Institute of Pharmacology and Toxicology and PGS Toxikologie und Umweltschutz, University of Leipzig, Leipzig, Germany; ACA-pharma concept GmbH, Deutscher Platz 5, 04103 Leipzig, Germany
2 2 Unitat de Farmacologia i Farmacognòsia, Facultat de Farmàcia, Institut de Biomedicina (IBUB), Centros de Investigación Biomédica en Red de Enfermedades Neurodegenerativas (CIBERNED), Universitat de Barcelona, Spain
Academic Editor:Zoraida P. Aguilar
Front. Biosci. (Landmark Ed) 2014, 19(8), 1345–1354; https://doi.org/10.2741/4285
Published: 1 June 2014
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nano and bio sensors)
Abstract

Alzheimer's disease (AD) is characterized by progressive decrease in cognitive function and loss of short-term memory known to be associated with a dysfunction of the cholinergic system. The pathological hallmarks of AD are beta-amyloid (Abeta) plaques and neurofibrillary tangles (NFTs) consisting of hyperphosphorylated tau. Hypercholesterolemia and disturbances in glucose metabolism are another risk factors. During the last two decades therapeutic strategies were mainly targeting the Abeta hypothesis. As this approach virtually failed to show a significant clinical benefit research on potential therapeutics has been shifted to tau pathology. However, also this approach has as yet not yielded in new therapeutics. Hence, rebalancing the cholinergic input to improve the cognitive symptoms of AD by inhibition of acetylcholine esterase (AChE) is still the only mechanistic target in addition to N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptor blockade by memantine that can be addressed by currently approved medications. Despite the fact that the available AChE inhibitors are directed at an identical target they exhibit some pharmacodynamic and pharmacokinetic features that should be considered when used clinically.

Keywords
Alzheimer’s disease
Acetylcholine esterase inhibitor
Memantine
NMDA
Beta-amyloid
Neurofibrillary tangles
Tau hyperphosporylation
Review
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