Magazine article Clinical Psychiatry News

Plasma Biomarker Panel Predicts Amnestic MCI or AD

Magazine article Clinical Psychiatry News

Plasma Biomarker Panel Predicts Amnestic MCI or AD

Article excerpt


Researchers have identified a panel of 10 lipid metabolites that can predict the development of either amnestic mild cognitive impairment or Alzheimer's disease within 2-3 years with 90% sensitivity and 90% specificity.

"The defined ten-metabolite profile features PCs [phosphatidylcholines] and ACs [acylcarnitines], phospholipids that have essential structural and functional roles in the integrity and functionality of cell membranes," Dr. Mark Mapstone of the University of Rochester (N.Y.) and his colleagues wrote.

Of the 525 healthy, community-dwelling individuals aged 70 years and older enrolled in the observational study, 74 met the criteria for amnestic mild cognitive impairment (aMCI) or mild Alzheimer's disease during the 5-year follow-up period--46 who were incidental at entry to the study and 28 who converted over a mean time of 2.1 years (Nat. Med. 2014 March 9 [doi: 10.1038/nm.3466]).

In the third year of the study, the investigators conducted untargeted metabolomic and lipidomic analysis on blood samples from 53 participants with either aMCI or Alzheimer's disease, including 18 converters and 53 cognitively normal controls. Blood samples from the converters were taken before and after conversion.

Analysis revealed a number of amino acids and phospholipids that were significantly different between the two groups, and a further targeted analysis showed that the converter group had significantly lower plasma levels of serotonin, phenylalanine, proline, lysine, phosphatidylcholine, taurine, and acylcarnitine. …

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