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      The Dynamics of Neurosteroids and Sex-Related Hormones in the Pathogenesis of Alzheimer’s Disease

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          A review on Alzheimer's disease pathophysiology and its management: an update.

          Alzheimer's disease acknowledged as progressive multifarious neurodegenerative disorder, is the leading cause of dementia in late adult life. Pathologically it is characterized by intracellular neurofibrillary tangles and extracellular amyloidal protein deposits contributing to senile plaques. Over the last two decades, advances in the field of pathogenesis have inspired the researchers for the investigation of novel pharmacological therapeutics centered more towards the pathophysiological events of the disease. Currently available treatments i.e. acetylcholinesterase inhibitors (rivastigmine, galantamine, donepezil) and N-methyl d-aspartate receptor antagonist (memantine) contribute minimal impact on the disease and target late aspects of the disease. These drugs decelerate the progression of the disease, provide symptomatic relief but fail to achieve a definite cure. While the neuropathological features of Alzheimer's disease are recognized but the intricacies of the mechanism have not been clearly defined. This lack of understanding regarding the pathogenic process may be the likely reason for the non-availability of effective treatment which can prevent onset and progression of the disease. Owing to the important progress in the field of pathophysiology in the last couple of years, new therapeutic targets are available that should render the underlying disease process to be tackled directly. In this review, authors will discusses the different aspects of pathophysiological mechanisms behind Alzheimer's disease and its management through conventional drug therapy, including modern investigational therapeutic strategies, recently completed and ongoing.
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            Mechanisms of estrogen receptor signaling: convergence of genomic and nongenomic actions on target genes.

            Estrogen receptors (ERs) act by regulating transcriptional processes. The classical mechanism of ER action involves estrogen binding to receptors in the nucleus, after which the receptors dimerize and bind to specific response elements known as estrogen response elements (EREs) located in the promoters of target genes. However, ERs can also regulate gene expression without directly binding to DNA. This occurs through protein-protein interactions with other DNA-binding transcription factors in the nucleus. In addition, membrane-associated ERs mediate nongenomic actions of estrogens, which can lead both to altered functions of proteins in the cytoplasm and to regulation of gene expression. The latter two mechanisms of ER action enable a broader range of genes to be regulated than the range that can be regulated by the classical mechanism of ER action alone. This review surveys our knowledge about the molecular mechanism by which ERs regulate the expression of genes that do not contain EREs, and it gives examples of the ways in which the genomic and nongenomic actions of ERs on target genes converge. Genomic and nongenomic actions of ERs that do not depend on EREs influence the physiology of many target tissues, and thus, increasing our understanding of the molecular mechanisms behind these actions is highly relevant for the development of novel drugs that target specific receptor actions.
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              The role of BDNF and its receptors in depression and antidepressant drug action: Reactivation of developmental plasticity.

              Recent evidence suggests that neuronal plasticity plays an important role in the recovery from depression. Antidepressant drugs and electroconvulsive shock treatment increase the expression of several molecules, which are associated with neuronal plasticity, in particular the neurotrophin BDNF and its receptor TrkB. Furthermore, these treatments increase neurogenesis and synaptic numbers in several brain areas. Conversely, depression, at least in its severe form, is associated with reduced volumes of the hippocampus and prefrontal cortex and in at least some cases these neurodegenerative signs can be attenuated by successful treatment. Such observations suggest a central role for neuronal plasticity in depression and the antidepressant effect, and also implicate BDNF signaling as a mediator of this plasticity. The antidepressant fluoxetine can reactivate developmental-like neuronal plasticity in the adult visual cortex, which, under appropriate environmental guidance, leads to the rewiring of a developmentally dysfunctional neural network. These observations suggest that the simple form of the neurotrophic hypothesis of depression, namely, that deficient levels of neurotrophic support underlies mood disorders and increases in these neurotrophic factors to normal levels brings about mood recovery, may not sufficiently explain the complex process of recovery from depression. This review discusses recent data on the role of BDNF and its receptors in depression and the antidepressant response and suggests a model whereby the effects of antidepressant treatments could be explained by a reactivation of activity-dependent and BDNF-mediated cortical plasticity, which in turn leads to the adjustment of neuronal networks to better adapt to environmental challenges.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                NeuroMolecular Medicine
                Neuromol Med
                Springer Science and Business Media LLC
                1535-1084
                1559-1174
                June 2018
                May 4 2018
                June 2018
                : 20
                : 2
                : 215-224
                Article
                10.1007/s12017-018-8493-y
                © 2018

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