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Oxidative Medicine and Cellular Longevity
Volume 2013 (2013), Article ID 297512, 12 pages
Review Article

Triggers and Effectors of Oxidative Stress at Blood-Brain Barrier Level: Relevance for Brain Ageing and Neurodegeneration

1Laboratory of Molecular Medicine, “Victor Babeş” National Institute of Pathology, 99-101 Splaiul Independenţei, 050096 Bucharest, Romania
2Department of Cellular and Molecular Medicine, School of Medicine, “Carol Davila” University of Medicine and Pharmacy, 8 Eroilor Sanitari, 050474 Bucharest, Romania
3Department of Neurology, Colentina Clinical Hospital (CDPC), School of Medicine, “Carol Davila” University of Medicine and Pharmacy, 19-21 Sos. Stefan cel Mare, 020125 Bucharest, Romania

Received 14 December 2012; Revised 27 January 2013; Accepted 31 January 2013

Academic Editor: Emilio Luiz Streck

Copyright © 2013 Ana-Maria Enciu et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


As fundamental research advances, it is becoming increasingly clear that a clinically expressed disease implies a mixture of intertwining molecular disturbances. Oxidative stress is one of such pathogenic pathways involved in virtually all central nervous system pathologies, infectious, inflammatory, or degenerative in nature. Since brain homeostasis largely depends on integrity of blood-brain barrier (BBB), many studies focused lately on BBB alteration in a wide spectrum of brain diseases. The proper two-way molecular transfer through BBB depends on several factors, including the functional status of its tight junction (TJ) complexes of proteins sealing neighbour endothelial cells. Although there is abundant experimental work showing that oxidative stress associates BBB permeability alteration, less is known about its implications, at molecular level, in TJ protein expression or TJ-related cell signalling. In this paper, oxidative stress is presented as a common pathway for different brain pathogenic mechanisms which lead to BBB dysregulation. We revise here oxidative-induced molecular mechanisms of BBB disruption and TJ protein expression alteration, in relation to ageing and neurodegeneration.