Vascular dysfunction is a crucial pathological hallmark of Alzheimer's disease (AD). Studies have reported that beta amyloid (Aβ) causes increased blood vessel growth in the brains of AD mouse models, a phenomenon that is also seen in AD patients. This has given way to an alternative angiogenesis hypothesis according to which, increased leakiness in the blood vessels disrupts the blood‐brain barrier (BBB) and allows unwanted blood products to enter the brain causing progression of disease pathology, promoting amyloid clumping and aggregation along with impaired cerebral blood flow. Furthermore, the expression of melanotransferrin in AD model and patients may contribute to angiogenesis. The objective of this chapter is to attempt to establish a link between the vascular damage and AD pathology. Curbing the vascular changes and resulting damage seen in the brains of AD model mice and improving their cognition by treating with FDA‐approved anti‐angiogenic drugs may expedite the translational potential of this research into clinical trials in human patients. This direction into targeting angiogenesis will facilitate new preventive and therapeutic interventions for AD and related vascular diseases.
Part of the book: Physiologic and Pathologic Angiogenesis