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Deregulated epigenetic gene-expression as a novel target to treat dementia and psychosis.

Journal: Die Psychiatrie - Grundlagen und Perspektiven
ISSN: 1614-4864

Psychopharmaka-Forschung in Deutschland: Stand und Entwicklungsperspektiven

Issue: 2011 (Vol. 8): Issue 3 2011
Pages: 165-172

Deregulated epigenetic gene-expression as a novel target to treat dementia and psychosis.

A. Fischer 1,2,3; P. Falkai 1,3

1Klink für Psychiatrie und Psychotherapie, Universitätsmedizin Göttingen; 2 European Neuroscience Institute Göttingen; 3 DZNE, Deutsches Zentrum für Neurodegenerative Erkrankungen Göttingen


dementia, gene expression, epigenetics, neuropsychiatric diseases


Changes in gene expression in the brain may underlie cognitive deficits inherent to neuropsychiatric and neurodegenerative disease. However, the mechanisms that underlie pathological alterations in the brain transcriptome are little understood. There is now accumulating evidence that altered chromatin plasticity and histone acetylation is involved in the pathogenesis of brain diseases. Histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitors exhibit neuroprotective and neuroregenerative properties and thus the targeting of HDACs appears to be a promising therapeutic strategy for the treatment of brain diseases. This article summarizes the latest results of the emerging field.

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