Publisher Summary This chapter discusses not only neurodegenerative consequences and several of the basic mechanisms underlying vascular pathology and neurotoxicity, but also the prospects that microglial activation may provide a reliable marker for neuroimaging and that intelligent drugs can be directed to the affected brain sites. Stroke and neurodegenerative diseases are among the leading causes of permanent disabilities and death in western societies. With an increasingly ageing population, both conditions pose a constant challenge to the individual and to society. Although in recent decades considerable advances have been made in the treatment of symptoms, for example in certain aspects of degenerative disorders like Parkinsonism, virtually no treatments are available as yet that interfere with the causal mechanisms underlying these brain diseases. From the basic neuroinflammatory mechanisms and their biochemical characteristics, the role of putative mediators that could play a key role in neurodegenerative disorders has been explored in the chapter, with Alzheimer's disease serving as a prototypical disorder. Although in experimental cellular models the various biochemical aspects and processes of inflammation can be well characterized, assessment of cerebral inflammatory processes in vivo is still in its infancy.