Disruption of cellular transport: a common cause of neurodegeneration?

Lancet Neurol. 2003 May;2(5):311-6. doi: 10.1016/s1474-4422(03)00383-1.


In many cases, the clinical manifestations of inherited neurodegenerative disorders appear after decades of normal function, which suggests that neurons may die through cumulative damage. Several genes that cause these diseases have been identified in recent years, but no common pathogenetic mechanism has been found. However, the most recent studies have begun to implicate the same mechanism in a range of neurodegenerative diseases, particularly those that involve motor neurons. The results of these studies suggest that the morphology and energy requirements of neurons make them particularly susceptible to the disruption of cellular transport systems.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Amyloid beta-Peptides / genetics
  • Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis / genetics
  • Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis / metabolism
  • Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis / pathology
  • Biological Transport / genetics
  • Biological Transport / physiology*
  • Cells / metabolism
  • Heat-Shock Proteins / genetics
  • Humans
  • Huntingtin Protein
  • Motor Neuron Disease / genetics
  • Motor Neuron Disease / metabolism
  • Motor Neuron Disease / pathology
  • Nerve Tissue Proteins / genetics
  • Neurodegenerative Diseases / genetics
  • Neurodegenerative Diseases / metabolism*
  • Neurodegenerative Diseases / pathology*
  • Nuclear Proteins / genetics
  • tau Proteins / genetics


  • Amyloid beta-Peptides
  • HTT protein, human
  • Heat-Shock Proteins
  • Huntingtin Protein
  • Nerve Tissue Proteins
  • Nuclear Proteins
  • tau Proteins