The endoplasmic reticulum (ER) is an organelle
that plays a crucial role in protein quality control such
as protein folding. Evidence to indicate the involvement
of ER in maintaining cellular homeostasis is increasing.
However, when cells are exposed to stressful conditions,
which perturb ER function, unfolded proteins accumulate
leading to ER stress. Cells then activate the unfolded protein
response (UPR) to cope with this stressful condition. In
the present review, we will discuss and summarize recent
advances in research on the basic mechanisms of the UPR.
We also discuss the possible involvement of ER stress in
the pathogenesis of Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Potential
therapeutic opportunities for diseases targeting ER stress
is also described.