Psychopharmacology 3e Chapter 20 Outline

Neurodegenerative Diseases


Parkinson’s Disease and Alzheimer’s Disease

Parkinson’s Disease

The clinical features of PD are primarily motor related
Patients with Parkinson’s may also develop dementia
The primary pathology of PD is a loss of dopaminergic neurons in the substantia nigra
Animal models of PD have strengths and limitations
Pharmacological treatments for PD are primarily symptomatic, not disease altering
There are several unmet needs in PD diagnosis and treatment

Alzheimer’s Disease

AD is defined by several pathological cellular disturbances
There are several behavioral, health, and genetic risk factors for AD
Alzheimer’s disease cannot be definitively diagnosed until postmortem analysis
Several different animal models contribute to our understanding of AD
Symptomatic treatments are available, and several others are under study for slowing disease progression
Box 20.1 The Cutting Edge Alzheimer’s Disease: It’s all in your gut???

Other Major Neurodegenerative Diseases

Huntington’s Disease

Only symptomatic treatments are available for HD; none alter disease progression

Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis

The symptoms and disease progression in ALS are devastating
The loss of motor neurons in ALS is complicated and poorly understood
Two medications exist that are approved for ALS treatment

Multiple Sclerosis

The symptoms of MS are variable and unpredictable
Causes of MS
Treatments fall into several categories for MS and can be very effective
Box 20.2 Pharmacology in Action Can We Repair or Replace Myelin?