Background: The concept of reserve was established to account for the observation that a given degree of neurodegenerative pathology may result in varying degrees of symptoms in different individuals. There is a large amount of evidence on epidemiological risk and protective factors for neurodegenerative diseases and dementia, yet the biological mechanisms that underpin the protective effects of certain lifestyle and physiological variables remain poorly understood, limiting the development of more effective preventive and treatment strategies. Additionally, different definitions and concepts of reserve exist, which hampers the coordination of research and comparison of results across studies. Discussion: This paper represents the consensus of a multidisciplinary group of experts from different areas of research related to reserve, including clinical, epidemiological and basic sciences. The consensus was developed during meetings of the working groups of the first International Conference on Cognitive Reserve in the Dementias (24–25 November 2017, Munich, Germany) and the Alzheimer’s Association Reserve and Resilience Professional Interest Area (25 July 2018, Chicago, USA). The main objective of the present paper is to develop a translational perspective on putative mechanisms underlying reserve against neurodegenerative disease, combining evidence from epidemiological and clinical studies with knowledge from animal and basic research. The potential brain functional and structural basis of reserve in Alzheimer’s disease and other brain disorders are discussed, as well as relevant lifestyle and genetic factors assessed in both humans and animal models.

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Journal BMC Medicine
Perneczky, R, Kempermann, G., Korczyn, A.D, Matthews, F.E., Ikram, M.A, Scarmeas, N., … Ewers, M. (2019). Translational research on reserve against neurodegenerative disease: consensus report of the International Conference on Cognitive Reserve in the Dementias and the Alzheimer's Association Reserve, Resilience and Protective Factors Professional Interest Area working groups. BMC Medicine, 17. doi:10.1186/s12916-019-1283-z