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International Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease
Volume 2010, Article ID 528474, 11 pages
Review Article

Neuronal Models for Studying Tau Pathology

1Centro de Biología Molecular “Severo Ochoa” (C.S.I.C.-U.A.M.), Facultad de Ciencias, Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, 28049 Madrid, Spain
2CIBERNED, Centro de Investigación Biomédica en Red de Enfermedades Neurodegenerativas, 28031 Madrid, Spain
3Departamento de Biología Molecular, Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, 28049 Madrid, Spain

Received 10 May 2010; Accepted 17 June 2010

Academic Editor: Gemma Casadesus

Copyright © 2010 Thorsten Koechling 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.


Alzheimer's disease (AD) is the most frequent neurodegenerative disorder leading to dementia in the aged human population. It is characterized by the presence of two main pathological hallmarks in the brain: senile plaques containing đť›˝ -amyloid peptide and neurofibrillary tangles (NFTs), consisting of fibrillar polymers of abnormally phosphorylated tau protein. Both of these histological characteristics of the disease have been simulated in genetically modified animals, which today include numerous mouse, fish, worm, and fly models of AD. The objective of this review is to present some of the main animal models that exist for reproducing symptoms of the disorder and their advantages and shortcomings as suitable models of the pathological processes. Moreover, we will discuss the results and conclusions which have been drawn from the use of these models so far and their contribution to the development of therapeutic applications for AD.