Abnormalities in Corticotropin-Releasing Factor (CRF) In Neurodegenerative Diseases
In this chapter, the authors summarize some of the data from their studies examining changes in pre- and postsynaptic markers for corticotropin releasing factor (CRF) in various brain regions in a variety of neurodegenerative disorders including Alzheimer's disease (AD), Parkinson's Disease, progressive supranuclear palsy (PSP), and Huntington's Disease. They use radioimmunoassay and immunohistochemical techniques to examine changes in CRF content and morphology, respectively, and receptors binding techniques to determine the consequences of the presynaptic changes in the neuropeptide. In order to examine the consequences of the decreases in CRF-immunoreactivity (IR) observed in AD, the authors measure changes in CRF-IR and CRF receptors in four regions of the cerebral cortex. The decreases in CRF-IR in AD were accompanied by reciprocal increases in CRF receptors in affected cortical areas. PSP is a neurodegenerative disorder that shares certain clinical and pathological features with AD.