The role of iron as a mediator of oxidative stress in Alzheimer disease



Iron is both essential for maintaining a spectrum of metabolic processes in the central nervous system and elsewhere, and potent source of reactive oxygen species. Redox balance with respect to iron, therefore, may be critical to human neurodegenerative disease but is also in need of better understanding. Alzheimer disease (AD) in particular is associated with accumulation of numerous markers of oxidative stress; moreover, oxidative stress has been shown to precede hallmark neuropathological lesions early in the disease process, and such lesions, once present, further accumulate iron, among other markers of oxidative stress. In this review, we discuss the role of iron in the progression of AD.