Biomarkers of oxidative and nitrosative damage in Alzheimer's disease and mild cognitive impairment.Ageing Res Rev 2009; 8(4):285-305AR
Alzheimer's disease (AD) is the most common type of dementia in the elderly. Products of oxidative and nitrosative stress (OS and NS, respectively) accumulate with aging, which is the main risk factor for AD. This provides the basis for the involvement of OS and NS in AD pathogenesis. OS and NS occur in biological systems due to the dysregulation of the redox balance, caused by a deficiency of antioxidants and/or the overproduction of free radicals. Free radical attack against lipids, proteins, sugars and nucleic acids leads to the formation of bioproducts whose detection in fluids and tissues represents the currently available method for assessing oxidative/nitrosative damage. Post-mortem and in-vivo studies have demonstrated an accumulation of products of free radical damage in the central nervous system and in the peripheral tissues of subjects with AD or mild cognitive impairment (MCI). In addition to their individual role, biomarkers for OS and NS in AD are associated with altered bioenergetics and amyloid-beta (Abeta) metabolism. In this review we discuss the main results obtained in the field of biomarkers of oxidative/nitrosative stress in AD and MCI in humans, in addition to their potential role as a tool for diagnosis, prognosis and treatment efficacy in AD.