In recent years it has become evident that ABC transporters fulfill important barrier functions in normal organs and during disease processes. Most importantly, resistance to drugs in cancer cells led to intense oncological and pharmacological investigations in which researchers were able to highlight important pharmacological interactions of chemotherapeuticals with ABC transporter function. Recently, the development of neurodegenerative diseases and the maintenance of neuronal stem cells have been linked to the activity of ABC transporters. Here, we summarize findings from cell culture experiments, animal models and studies of patients with Alzheimer's disease. Furthermore, we discuss pharmacological interactions and computational methods for risk assessment.