Current Topics in Developmental Biology - Chapter 4: Improving mouse models for the study of Alzheimer's disease

Elsevier, Current Topics in Developmental Biology, Volume 148, January 2022
Reagan A.M., Onos K.D., Heuer S.E., Sasner M., Howell G.R.

Alzheimer's disease (AD) is a complex neurodegenerative disease whose risk is influenced by genetic and environmental factors. Although a number of pathological hallmarks have been extensively studied over the last several decades, a complete picture of disease initiation and progression remains unclear. We now understand that numerous cell types and systems are involved in AD pathogenesis, and that this cellular profile may present differently for each individual, making the creation of relevant mouse models challenging. However, with increasingly diverse data made available by genome-wide association studies, we can identify and examine new genes and pathways involved in genetic risk for AD, many of which involve vascular health and inflammation. When developing mouse models, it is critical to assess (1) an aging timeline that represents onset and progression in humans, (2) genetic variants and context, (3) environmental factors present in human populations that result in both neuropathological and functional changes—themes that we address in this chapter.