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Microglial involvement in the development of olfactory dysfunction
Yoojin Seo1,†, Hyung-Sik Kim1,†, Kyung-Sun Kang2,3,*
1Biomedical Research Institute, Pusan National University Hospital, Pusan National University School of Medicine, Busan 49241, South Korea
2Adult Stem Cell Research Center, College of Veterinary Medicine, Seoul National University, Seoul 08826, South Korea
3Research Institute for Veterinary Science, College of Veterinary Medicine, Seoul National University, Seoul 08826, South Korea
Correspondence to: Tel: +82-2-880-1246; Fax: +82-2-876-7610; E-mail: kangpub@snu.ac.kr
The first authors contributed equally to this work.
Received: March 6, 2017; Revised: September 20, 2017; Accepted: October 7, 2017; Published online: October 13, 2017.
Abstract
Olfaction is one of the oldest and important senses for life. Olfactory impairment is the most common clinical manifestation among elderly, and its prevalence is sharply increased with aging. Importantly, growing evidence has shown that olfactory dysfunction is the first sign of neurodegeneration, indicating the importance of olfactory assessment as an early diagnostic marker for the detection of neurological disorders. In this review, we described the nature of olfactory dysfunction and the advantage of animal models in olfaction study with brief introduction of olfactory behavior tests widely used in this field. The contribution of microglia in the neurodegenerative process including olfactory impairment is then discussed to provide a comprehensive understanding of the physiopathological role of neuron-microglial interaction within the olfactory system. In particular, we focused on a mouse model of Niemann-Pick disease type C, a rare but fatal neurological disorder, to unravel the mechanisms underlying the olfactory dysfunction and abnormal microgliosis during neurodegeneration.
Keywords: Olfaction, Neurodegenerative disease, microglia, Niemann-Pick disease type C


© 2017 The Korean Society of Veterinary Science.