Date: 23 Nov 2009

NCAM in Neuropsychiatric and Neurodegenerative Disorders

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The neural cell adhesion molecule (NCAM) has roles in normal brain development, including axonal/dendritic growth and branching and synaptic plasticity. A growing body of evidence has implicated NCAM as a susceptible risk for neuropsychiatric disorders such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, depression, and anxiety disorder, as well as the most prevalent neurodegenerative disease, Alzheimer’s disease. While individuals with these diseases vary in symptoms, age of onset, treatment, and neuronal systems affected, they share cognitive dysfunction as a core feature. This review will highlight the evidence for NCAM in the cause or progression of each of these disorders.