Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications, Vol.446, No.3, 687-691, 2014
Effects of oxysterols on the blood-brain barrier: Implications for Alzheimer's disease
Altered brain cholesterol homeostasis plays a key role in neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's disease (AD). For a long time, the blood-brain barrier (BBB) was basically considered as a barrier isolating the brain from circulating cholesterol, however, several lines of evidence now suggest that the BBB strictly regulates the exchanges of sterol between the brain and the peripheral circulation. Oxysterols, synthesized by neurons or by peripheral cells, cross the BBB easily and modulate the expression of several enzymes, receptors and transporters which are involved not only in cholesterol metabolism but also in other brain functions. This review article deals with the way oxysterols impact BBB cells. These perspectives open new routes for designing certain therapeutical approaches that target the BBB so that the onset and/or progression of brain diseases such as AD may be modulated. (C) 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.