VOL. 2, No. 3, July 2005

L. J. Janssen [2005] Med Hypotheses Res 2: 525-532.

Isoprostanes: Not Just Markers, but also Catalysts of
Alzheimer’s Disease?

Luke J. Janssen*

Department of Medicine, McMaster University, and the Firestone Institute for Respiratory
Health, St. Joseph’s Healthcare, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada L8N 4A6.

Abstract. Alzheimer’s disease (AD) has been studied for decades, and yet its etiology is
still poorly understood. Several factors have come to be associated with AD, including
neurofibrillary tangles comprised largely of -amyloid peptides, metal ions, and defects in
cerebrovascular perfusion. However, the links between these factors, if any, are unclear.
More recently, isoprostanes have also come to be strongly associated with AD and animal
models of AD. Isoprostanes are not only markers of oxidative stress, but are now
increasingly recognized as being able to exert important biological effects including powerful
vasoconstriction. Here, we propose a novel hypothesis in which isoprostanes bring together
the factors identified above, and, thus, may play a central role in the development of AD.

*Address all correspondence to: Dr. L. J. Janssen, L-314, St. Joseph’s Healthcare, 50
Charlton Ave. East Hamilton, Ontario, Canada L8N 4A6.
Phone: 905-522-1155 [ext. 5912]. Fax: 905-540-6510. E-Mail:

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