Alzheimer's disease and epigenetic diet

Neurochem Int. 2014 Dec:78:105-16. doi: 10.1016/j.neuint.2014.09.012. Epub 2014 Oct 5.


Alzheimer's disease (AD) is the most common neurodegenerative disease. Many efforts have been directed to prevent AD due to its rising prevalence and the lack of an effective curative treatment. Various epigenetic mechanisms are linked to pathogenesis of AD. Epigenetic alterations may occur through external factors and are known for their reversibility. Dietary factors can influence epigenetic mechanisms. Several neuroprotective nutrients have been shown to enhance cognition, memory and other impaired functions seen in AD. Within recent years neuroprotective nutrients have gained more attention in the field of epigenetic. A growing body of evidence suggest that epigenetic changes triggered by dietary nutrients have an important role in health and in prevention of some diseases, especially neurodegenerative disorders. Several studies have shown that folic acid, vitamin B12, choline, zinc, selenium, dietary polyphenols are capable of interacting with epigenetic mechanisms and ultimately gene expression. Epigenetic mechanisms resulting in neuronal dysfunction may be modified by diet. Therefore manipulation of epigenetic mechanisms via dietary nutrients may affect influence the vulnerability of neurons to degeneration which is seen in AD. The aim of this article is to provide a brief overview about the recent findings related to epigenetic alterations that are linked to AD pathogenesis, and to discuss the bioactive nutrients which can affect these epigenetic mechanisms.

Keywords: (−)-epigallocatechin-3-gallate; Alzheimer's disease; Curcumin; Epigenetic; Isothiocyanates; Resveratrol.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Alzheimer Disease / chemically induced
  • Alzheimer Disease / diet therapy*
  • Alzheimer Disease / metabolism*
  • Animals
  • Diet* / adverse effects
  • Diet* / methods
  • Dietary Supplements*
  • Epigenesis, Genetic / physiology*
  • Folic Acid / administration & dosage
  • Folic Acid / metabolism
  • Humans


  • Folic Acid