A focus on the synapse for neuroprotection in Alzheimer disease and other dementias

Paul Coleman, Howard Federoff, Roger Kurlan

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

244 Scopus citations

Abstract

Synaptic dysfunction and failure are processes that occur early in Alzheimer disease (AD) and are important targets for protective treatments to slow AD progression and preserve cognitive and functional abilities. Synaptic loss is the best current pathologic correlate of cognitive decline, and synaptic dysfunction is evident long before synapses and neurons are lost. Once synaptic function fails, even in the setting of surviving neurons, there may be little chance of effectively interfering with the disease process. This review emphasizes the importance of preserving synaptic structure and function (i.e., "synaptoprotection") in AD. Such "synaptoprotective" therapy will probably need to be administered at a critical early time point, perhaps years before onset of clinical symptoms.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1155-1162
Number of pages8
JournalNeurology
Volume63
Issue number7
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 12 2004
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology

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