Pathology of the dentate gyrus in neurodegenerative disease

Richard A. Armstrong*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Published conference outputChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review


The dentate gyrus (DG) is an important part of the hippocampal formation and is believed to be involved in a variety of brain functions including episodic and spatial memory and the exploration of novel environments. In several neurodegenerative disorders, significant pathology occurs in the DG which may be involved in the development of clinical dementia. Based on the abundance of pathological change, neurodegenerative disorders can be divided into three groups: (1) those in which high densities of neuronal cytoplasmic inclusions (NCI) are present in DG granule cells, e.g., Pick’s disease (PiD), frontotemporal lobar degeneration with TDP-43-immunoreactive inclusions (FTLD-TDP), and neuronal intermediate filament inclusion disease (NIFID), (2) those in which aggregated protein deposits are distributed throughout the hippocampal formation including the molecular layer of the DG, e.g., Alzheimer’s disease (AD), Down’s syndrome (DS), and variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (vCJD), and (3) those in which in there is significantly less pathology in the DG, e.g., Parkinson’s disease dementia (PD-Dem), dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB), progressive supranuclear palsy (PSP), corticobasal degeneration (CBD), multiple system atrophy (MSA), and sporadic CJD (sCJD). Hence, DG pathology varies significantly among disorders which could contribute to differences in clinical dementia. Pathological differences among disorders could reflect either differential vulnerability of the DG to specific molecular pathologies or variation in the degree of spread of pathological proteins into the hippocampal formation from adjacent regions.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationDentate gyrus
Subtitle of host publicationstructure, role in disease, and potential health implications
EditorsZachery Lowes
Place of PublicationHauppage, NY (US)
PublisherNova science
Number of pages22
ISBN (Electronic)978-1-63463-406-9
ISBN (Print)978-1-63463-371-0
Publication statusPublished - 2015

Publication series

NameNeuroscience Research Progress
PublisherNova Science


  • dentate gyrus
  • hippocampal formation
  • perforant path
  • spatial memory
  • neurodegenerative diseases


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