Current Concepts of Neurodegenerative Mechanisms in Alzheimer’s Disease
Neurodegenerative diseases are hereditary or sporadic conditions that result in the progressive loss of the structure and function of neurons as well as neuronal death. Although a range of diseases lie under this umbrella term, Alzheimer’s disease (AD) and Parkinson’s disease (PD) are the most common neurodegenerative diseases that affect a large population around the globe. Alzheimer’s disease is characterized by the abnormal accumulation of extracellular amyloid-β plaques and intraneuronal neurofibrillary tangles in brain regions and manifests as a type of dementia in aged individuals that results in memory loss, multiple cognitive abnormalities, and intellectual disabilities that interfere with quality of life. Since the discovery of AD, a wealth of new information has emerged that delineates the causes, mechanisms of disease, and potential therapeutic agents, but an effective remedy to cure the diseases has not been identified yet. This could be because of the complexity of the disease process, as it involves various contributing factors that include environmental factors and genetic predispositions. This review summarizes the current understanding on neurodegenerative mechanisms that lead to the emergence of the pathology of AD.