Study examines link between blood biomarkers and risk of Alzheimer's disease

March 26, 2012, JAMA and Archives Journals

A meta-analysis of previously published studies found that the ratio of blood plasma amyloid-β (Aβ) peptides Aβ42:Aβ40 was significantly associated with development of Alzheimer disease and dementia, according to a report published Online First by Archives of Neurology.

"Plasma levels of amyloid-β (Aβ) peptides have been a principal focus of the growing literature on blood-based , but studies to date have varied in design, assay methods, and sample size, making it difficult to readily interpret the overall data," the authors write as background in the study.

Alain Koyama, S.M., then of Harvard School of Public Health and Brigham and Women's Hospital, Boston, now with the University of California, San Francisco, and colleagues conducted a meta-analysis of 13 previously published studies to examine the association between plasma amyloid-β and development of , Alzheimer disease (AD) and cognitive decline.

The 13 studies included in the analysis had a total of 10,303 participants, and were published between 1995 and 2011. The studies also included measurement of at least one relevant plasma amyloid-β species (Aβ40, Aβ42, or Aβ42: Aβ40 ratio) and reported an effect estimate for dementia, AD or cognitive decline.

The authors found that lower Aβ42: Aβ40 ratios were significantly associated with development of Alzheimer disease and dementia, with most studies in the analysis reporting similar findings. Plasma levels of Aβ40 and Aβ42 alone, however, were not significantly associated with either outcome.

"In conclusion, despite the limitations of existing research and heterogeneity across the studies considered, this systematic review and meta-analysis suggests that the ratio of plasma Aβ42: Aβ40 may have value in predicting the risk for later development of dementia or AD and merits further investigation."

Explore further: Overlooked peptide reveals clues to causes of Alzheimer's disease

More information: Arch Neurol. Published online March 26, 2012. doi:10.1001/archneurol.2011.1841

Related Stories

Overlooked peptide reveals clues to causes of Alzheimer's disease

July 3, 2011
Researchers at the RIKEN Brain Science Institute (BSI) and their collaborators have shed light on the function of a little-studied amyloid peptide in promoting Alzheimer's disease (AD). Their surprising findings reveal that ...

Recycling of Alzheimer's proteins could be key to new treatments

May 25, 2011
The formation of abnormal strands of protein called amyloid fibrils -- associated with two dozen diseases ranging from Alzheimer's to type-2 diabetes -- may not be permanent and irreversible as previously thought, scientists ...

Advances in research into Alzheimer's disease

July 9, 2011
Advances in research into Alzheimer's disease: transporter proteins at the blood CSF barrier and vitamin D may help prevent amyloid β build up in the brain

New biomarker may help with early diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease

June 22, 2011
A new biomarker may help identify which people with mild memory deficits will go on to develop Alzheimer's disease, according to a new study published in the June 22, 2011, online issue of Neurology, the medical journal of ...

New drug target improves memory in mouse model of Alzheimer's disease

March 7, 2012
(Medical Xpress) -- Researchers at the University of California, San Diego, the Medical University of South Carolina, the University of Cincinnati, and American Life Science Pharmaceuticals of San Diego have validated the ...

Recommended for you

Brain zaps may help curb tics of Tourette syndrome

January 16, 2018
Electric zaps can help rewire the brains of Tourette syndrome patients, effectively reducing their uncontrollable vocal and motor tics, a new study shows.

A 'touching sight': How babies' brains process touch builds foundations for learning

January 16, 2018
Touch is the first of the five senses to develop, yet scientists know far less about the baby's brain response to touch than to, say, the sight of mom's face, or the sound of her voice.

Researchers identify protein involved in cocaine addiction

January 16, 2018
Mount Sinai researchers have identified a protein produced by the immune system—granulocyte-colony stimulating factor (G-CSF)—that could be responsible for the development of cocaine addiction.

New study reveals why some people are more creative than others

January 16, 2018
Creativity is often defined as the ability to come up with new and useful ideas. Like intelligence, it can be considered a trait that everyone – not just creative "geniuses" like Picasso and Steve Jobs – possesses in ...

Neuroscientists suggest a model for how we gain volitional control of what we hold in our minds

January 16, 2018
Working memory is a sort of "mental sketchpad" that allows you to accomplish everyday tasks such as calling in your hungry family's takeout order and finding the bathroom you were just told "will be the third door on the ...

Brain imaging predicts language learning in deaf children

January 15, 2018
In a new international collaborative study between The Chinese University of Hong Kong and Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children's Hospital of Chicago, researchers created a machine learning algorithm that uses brain scans to predict ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.