Aging, inflammation and depressive behavior: a review

Adriana Uzoni, Ciobanu Ovidiu, Elena Raluca Sandu, Ana Maria Buga, Aurel Popa-Wagner



One of the most common co-morbidities of cerebrovascular disorders is neuroinflammation, a hallmark and decisive contributor to many central nervous system (CNS) diseases. Although neuropathological conditions differ in etiology and in the way in which the inflammatory response is mounted, cellular and molecular mechanisms of neuroinflammation are probably similar in aging, hypertension, depression and cognitive impairment or after cerebral insult such as stroke. Moreover, a number of highly prevalent risk factors such as hypertension, diabetes and atherosclerosis are increasingly understood to act as “silent contributors” to neuroinflammation – not only establishing the condition as a central pathophysiological mechanism, but also constantly fuelling it. Mild, but continuous neuroinflammation can provide the ground for disorders such as cerebral small vessel disease (cSVD) and subsequent dementia. Acute neuroinflammation, often in the context of traumatic or ischemic CNS lesions, aggravates the acute damage and can lead to depression, post-stroke dementia and neurodegeneration. All of these sequelae impair recovery and provide the ground for further cerebrovascular events.


Metabolic syndrome; Inflammation; Aging

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