Neuroinflammation is a prominent feature of Alzheimer disease (AD) and other chronic neurodegenerative disorders. It exacerbates the fundamental pathology by generating a plethora of inflammatory mediators and neurotoxic compounds. Inflammatory cytokines, complement components, and toxic free radicals are among the many species that are generated. Microglia attack the pathological entities and may inadvertently injure host neurons. Recent evidence indicates that microglia can be stimulated to assume an antiinflammatory state rather than a proinflammatory state which may have therapeutic potential. Proinflammatory cytokines include IL-1, IL-6 and TNF, while antiinflammatory cytokines include IL-4 and IL-10. Complement activation is a separate process which causes extensive neuronal damage in AD through assembly of the membrane attack complex. Aggregated amyloid-β is a potent activator of human complement but not of mouse complement. This is an important difference between AD and transgenic mouse models of AD. Many so far unexplored molecules may contribute to neuroinflammation or act to inhibit it. Stable isotope labeling by amino acids in cell culture (SILAC) analysis identified 174 proteins that were upregulated by two-fold or more, and 189 that were downregulated by 2-fold or more following inflammatory stimulation of microglial-like THP-1 cells. Neurotoxicity may result from any combination of these and further exploration is clearly warranted. In addition, many small molecules may play a significant role. One example is hydrogen sulfide which appears to be an endogenous antiinflammatory agent.
Journal of Alzheimer's Disease – IOS Press
Published: Jan 1, 2010
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