Mechanisms of olfactory dysfunction in aging and neurodegenerative disorders

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

151 Citations (Scopus)


Although olfaction is the primal sense in animals, its importance in humans is underappreciated. Extensive literature demonstrates that aging is accompanied by olfactory loss and hyposmia/anosmia which is also a feature of several neurodegenerative disorders. Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases are characterized by severe olfactory deficits, while problems of olfactory discrimination are less prominent features in several other disorders. Olfactory loss is accompanied by structural abnormalities of the olfactory epithelium, the olfactory bulb and the central olfactory cortices. This review summarizes our present knowledge about the pathological changes in the olfactory system during aging and in various neurodegenerative diseases.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)215-232
Number of pages18
JournalAgeing Research Reviews
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2004



  • Aging
  • Alzheimer's disease
  • Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease
  • Olfaction
  • Parkinson's disease
  • Parkinsonian syndromes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Biochemistry
  • Ageing
  • Molecular Biology
  • Neurology

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