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Open Access Review

Immunosenescence, inflammation and Alzheimer’s disease

Adriana Martorana1, Matteo Bulati1, Silvio Buffa1, Mariavaleria Pellicanò12, Calogero Caruso1, Giuseppina Candore1 and Giuseppina Colonna-Romano1*

Author Affiliations

1 Immunosenescence Unit, Department of Pathobiology and Medical and Forensic Biotechnologies, University of Palermo, corso Tukory 211, 90134, Palermo, Italy

2 Department of Internal Medicine II, Center for Medical Research, Tübingen Aging and Tumor Immunology Group, University of Tübingen, Waldhörnlestraße 22, 72072, Tübingen, Germany

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Longevity & Healthspan 2012, 1:8  doi:10.1186/2046-2395-1-8

Published: 1 November 2012

Abstract

Ageing impacts negatively on the development of the immune system and its ability to fight pathogens. Progressive changes in the T-cell and B-cell systems over the lifespan of individuals have a major impact on the capacity to respond to immune challenges. The cumulative age-associated changes in immune competence are termed immunosenescence that is characterized by changes where adaptive immunity deteriorates, while innate immunity is largely conserved or even upregulated with age. On the other hand, ageing is also characterized by “inflamm-ageing”, a term coined to explain the inflammation commonly present in many age-associated diseases. It is believed that immune inflammatory processes are relevant in Alzheimer’s disease, the most common cause of dementia in older people. In the present paper we review data focusing on changes of some immunoinflammatory parameters observed in patients affected by Alzheimer’s disease.

Keywords:
Immunosenescence; Alzheimer’s disease; Inflammation; Cytokine; Chemokine; Lymphocyte; Ageing