Microglial hetergeneity in aging and Alzheimer's disease: Is sex relevant?




Delage, Charlotte Isabelle
Šimončičová, Eva
Tremblay, Marie-Ève

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Journal of Pharmacological Sciences


Neurodegenerative diseases and their associated cognitive decline are known to be more prevalent during aging. Recent evidence has uncovered the role of microglia, the immunocompetent cells of the brain, in dysfunctions linked to neurodegenerative diseases such as is Alzheimer's disease (AD). Similar to other pathologies, AD is shown to be sex-biased, with females being more at risk compared to males. While the mechanisms driving this prevalence are still unclear, emerging data suggest the sex differences present in microglia throughout life might lead to different responses of these cells in both health and disease. Furthermore, microglial cells have recently been recognized as a deeply heterogeneous population, with multiple subsets and/or phenotypes stemming from diverse parameters such as age, sex or state of health. Therefore, this review discusses microglial heterogeneity during aging in both basal conditions and AD with a focus on existing sex differences in this process.



Aging, Neurodegeneration, Sex differences, Microglia, Alzheimer's disease


Delage, C. I., Šimončičová, E., & Tremblay, M. (2021). Microglial heterogeneity in aging and Alzheimer’s disease: Is sex relevant? Journal of Pharmacological Sciences, 146(3), 169-181. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jphs.2021.03.006.