Topic Review
Acetylcholinesterase Inhibitors
Acetylcholinesterase (AChE) inhibitors are the only drugs that have demonstrated success in slowing shrinkage (atrophy) of the cortex, hippocampus, and basal forebrain, major areas of Alzheimer's disease (AD)-associated brain damage and dementia. The main barrier to taking advantage of this new success in treating, or even preventing, AD is that the old available AChE inhibitors are weak reversible inhibitors that cause intolerable nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea if given in the higher doses needed. A promising new strategy for producing high-level AChE inhibition in the brain as needed for effective treatment of AD is the use of AChE inhibitors that are of a different type, the  irreversible inhibitors. 
  • 1503
  • 28 Oct 2020
Topic Review
Algorithm for Dysphagia Screening
Dysphagia is often unrecognized because many people are unfamiliar with symptoms and signs of dysphagia  besides choking during swallowing.  Dysphagia screening is therefore important. A good screening should be a quick process and minimally invasive but can determine the likelihood of dysphagia. Here, an algorithm for dysphagia screening is introduced. The algorithm can be used for people unspecialized in dysphagia.
  • 1402
  • 05 Nov 2020
Topic Review
The Tryptophan-Kynurenine Metabolic Pathway
Tryptophan (TRP) is one of the essential amino acids, which participates in protein synthesis. The tryptophan’s main metabolic route is the kynurenine pathway (KP) through which approximately 90-95% of TRP degrades into nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD+) and other bioactive metabolites. The appropriate amount of NAD+ is essential to maintain the operation and the viability of cells. The other molecules are neurotoxic, neuroprotective, oxidant, antioxidant, and/or immune modifiers. They play an important role in the function of the brain and the peripheral tissues. The change in the levels of the bioactive molecules is considered to contribute to the development of a wide range of illnesses from cancer to immunologic, neurodegenerative, and psychiatric diseases.
  • 1177
  • 10 Aug 2021
Topic Review
Cognition is the acquisition of knowledge by the mechanical process of information flow in a system. In animal cognition, input is received by the sensory modalities and the output may occur as a motor or another response. The sensory information is internally transformed to a set of representations which is the basis for cognitive processing. This is in contrast to the traditional definition based on mental processes and originating from metaphysical philosophy.
  • 1131
  • 01 Jul 2022
Topic Review
Curcumin and Peripheral Neuropathies
Peripheral neuropathies (PN) can be triggered after metabolic diseases, traumatic peripheral nerve injury, genetic mutations, toxic substances, and/or inflammation. PN is a major clinical problem, affecting many patients and with few effective therapeutics. Recently, interest in natural dietary compounds, such as polyphenols, in human health has led to a great deal of research, especially in PN. Curcumin is a polyphenol extracted from the root of Curcuma longa. This molecule has long been used in Asian medicine for its anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, and antioxidant properties. However, like numerous polyphenols, curcumin has a very low bioavailability and a very fast metabolism. This part provides an overview of curcumin in the treatment of PN (anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, anti-endoplasmic reticulum stress (anti-ER-stress), neuroprotection, and glial protection). Finally, because PN are associated with numerous pathologies (e.g., cancers, diabetes, addiction, inflammatory disease...), this part is likely to interest a large audience.
  • 1089
  • 20 Oct 2020
Topic Review
Sleep in Declarative Memory Consolidation
There is ample evidence supporting a key role of sleep in memory consolidation. Thalamo-cortical and hippocampal-neocortical interactions allow the reconfiguration of synapses. Oscillatory and molecular changes are involved during sleep in memory consolidation and synaptic rescalling.
  • 901
  • 27 Oct 2020
Topic Review
Facioscapulohumeral Muscular Dystrophy
Facioscapulohumeral muscular dystrophy (FSHD)—the worldwide third most common inherited muscular dystrophy caused by the heterozygous contraction of a 3.3 kb tandem repeat (D4Z4) on a chromosome with a 4q35 haplotype—is a progressive genetic myopathy with variable onset of symptoms, distribution of muscle weakness, and clinical severity.  A rough correlation between the phenotypic severity of FSHD and the D4Z4 repeat size has been reported, and the majority of patients with infantile FSHD obtain a very short D4Z4 repeat length (one to three copies, EcoRI size 10–14 kb), in contrast to the classical, slowly progressive, form of FSHD (15–38 kb). With the increasing identifications of case reports and the advance in genetic diagnostics, recent studies have suggested that the variant of FSHD is not a genetically separate entity but a part of the FSHD spectrum. Nevertheless, many questions about the clinical phenotype and natural history of FSHD remain unanswered, limiting evidence-based clinical management.
  • 762
  • 05 Nov 2020
Topic Review
MAPK/ERK Dysfunction in Neurodegenerative Diseases
The signaling pathway of the microtubule-associated protein kinase or extracellular regulated kinase (MAPK/ERK) is a common mechanism of extracellular information transduction from extracellular stimuli to the intracellular space. The transduction of information leads to changes in the ongoing metabolic pathways and the modification of gene expression patterns. In the central nervous system, ERK is expressed ubiquitously, both temporally and spatially. The MAP-ERK pathway is a key element of the neuroinflammatory pathway triggered by glial cells during the development of neurodegenerative diseases, such as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease, Huntington’s disease, and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, as well as prionic diseases. The process triggered by MAPK/ERK activation depends on the stage of development (mature or senescence), the type of cellular element in which the pathway is activated, and the anatomic neural structure. However, extensive gaps exist with regards to the targets of the phosphorylated ERK in many of these processes.
  • 582
  • 31 Jan 2021
Topic Review
Neurodegenerative Diseases
Neurodegenerative diseases are affecting more and more people around the world. Current therapies only treat the symptoms and not the causes of the disease. However, the pathophysiology of these diseases is now better known. In the case of Alzheimer's disease and Parkinson's disease, some common mechanisms have been identified. One of the first known mechanisms is the accumulation of proteins: α-synuclein (Parkinson's disease), Tau (Alzheimer's disease) and β-amyloid (Alzheimer's disease and Parkinson's disease) proteins. Protein accumulation is related to a disruption of mitochondrial activity associated with cell death and oxidative stress. Inflammation is also another important mechanism, which is disrupted in these pathologies.
  • 549
  • 17 Feb 2021
Topic Review
Whole-Brain Models
Whole-brain models are sets of equations that describe the dynamics and interactions between neural populations in different brain regions. Most whole-brain models are built considering three basic elements: brain parcellation, anatomical connectivity matrix, and local dynamics.
  • 487
  • 21 Oct 2020
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