Alzheimer's disease (AD) has become a major public health problem around the world due to its increasing prevalence, long duration, caregiver burden, and high financial cost of care. The degeneration of acetylcholine-containing neurons in the basal forebrain has been implicated in the symptoms of AD. Cholinesterase inhibitors may block the degradation of acetylcholine, thus increasing the efficacy of the remaining cholinergic neurons. Huperzine A is a linearly competitive, reversible inhibitor of acetyl cholinesterase that is said to have both central and peripheral activity with the ability to protect cells against hydrogen peroxide, beta-amyloid protein (or peptide), glutamate, ischemia and staurosporine-induced cytotoxicity and apoptosis. These properties might qualify Huperzine A as a promising agent for treating dementia (including AD).