Alzheimer's disease (AD) is a neurodegenerative disorder mostly affecting geriatric patients worldwide. The high emotional and economic impact of AD on patients, families, and the society has made AD one of the paramount geriatric syndromes. Efforts to find disease-modifying therapy have not yet been rewarding. Despite our increasing appreciation of the role of genetics in AD pathogenesis, pharmacogenomic approaches to uncover drug targets have not been extensively explored. The current knowledge of the genetics of both familial and non-familial (sporadic) AD, and the emerging data on the effect of Apolipoprotein E (ApoE) alleles on the response to AD therapeutic agents, is evidence that the potential utility of pharmacogenomics may not be limited to the familial AD (FAD) but provide answers for AD as a whole. The apparent inability of presently available drugs to alter the course of AD could be a signal that it is time to change the way we think about AD therapeutics.
Copyright 2003 Elsevier Ireland Ltd.