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1.  Common genetic variants in the CLDN2 and PRSS1-PRSS2 loci alter risk for alcohol-related and sporadic pancreatitis 
Whitcomb, David C. | LaRusch, Jessica | Krasinskas, Alyssa M. | Klei, Lambertus | Smith, Jill P. | Brand, Randall E. | Neoptolemos, John P. | Lerch, Markus M. | Tector, Matt | Sandhu, Bimaljit S. | Guda, Nalini M. | Orlichenko, Lidiya | Alkaade, Samer | Amann, Stephen T. | Anderson, Michelle A. | Baillie, John | Banks, Peter A. | Conwell, Darwin | Coté, Gregory A. | Cotton, Peter B. | DiSario, James | Farrer, Lindsay A. | Forsmark, Chris E. | Johnstone, Marianne | Gardner, Timothy B. | Gelrud, Andres | Greenhalf, William | Haines, Jonathan L. | Hartman, Douglas J. | Hawes, Robert A. | Lawrence, Christopher | Lewis, Michele | Mayerle, Julia | Mayeux, Richard | Melhem, Nadine M. | Money, Mary E. | Muniraj, Thiruvengadam | Papachristou, Georgios I. | Pericak-Vance, Margaret A. | Romagnuolo, Joseph | Schellenberg, Gerard D. | Sherman, Stuart | Simon, Peter | Singh, Vijay K. | Slivka, Adam | Stolz, Donna | Sutton, Robert | Weiss, Frank Ulrich | Wilcox, C. Mel | Zarnescu, Narcis Octavian | Wisniewski, Stephen R. | O'Connell, Michael R. | Kienholz, Michelle L. | Roeder, Kathryn | Barmada, M. Michael | Yadav, Dhiraj | Devlin, Bernie | Albert, Marilyn S. | Albin, Roger L. | Apostolova, Liana G. | Arnold, Steven E. | Baldwin, Clinton T. | Barber, Robert | Barnes, Lisa L. | Beach, Thomas G. | Beecham, Gary W. | Beekly, Duane | Bennett, David A. | Bigio, Eileen H. | Bird, Thomas D. | Blacker, Deborah | Boxer, Adam | Burke, James R. | Buxbaum, Joseph D. | Cairns, Nigel J. | Cantwell, Laura B. | Cao, Chuanhai | Carney, Regina M. | Carroll, Steven L. | Chui, Helena C. | Clark, David G. | Cribbs, David H. | Crocco, Elizabeth A. | Cruchaga, Carlos | DeCarli, Charles | Demirci, F. Yesim | Dick, Malcolm | Dickson, Dennis W. | Duara, Ranjan | Ertekin-Taner, Nilufer | Faber, Kelley M. | Fallon, Kenneth B. | Farlow, Martin R. | Ferris, Steven | Foroud, Tatiana M. | Frosch, Matthew P. | Galasko, Douglas R. | Ganguli, Mary | Gearing, Marla | Geschwind, Daniel H. | Ghetti, Bernardino | Gilbert, John R. | Gilman, Sid | Glass, Jonathan D. | Goate, Alison M. | Graff-Radford, Neill R. | Green, Robert C. | Growdon, John H. | Hakonarson, Hakon | Hamilton-Nelson, Kara L. | Hamilton, Ronald L. | Harrell, Lindy E. | Head, Elizabeth | Honig, Lawrence S. | Hulette, Christine M. | Hyman, Bradley T. | Jicha, Gregory A. | Jin, Lee-Way | Jun, Gyungah | Kamboh, M. Ilyas | Karydas, Anna | Kaye, Jeffrey A. | Kim, Ronald | Koo, Edward H. | Kowall, Neil W. | Kramer, Joel H. | Kramer, Patricia | Kukull, Walter A. | LaFerla, Frank M. | Lah, James J. | Leverenz, James B. | Levey, Allan I. | Li, Ge | Lin, Chiao-Feng | Lieberman, Andrew P. | Lopez, Oscar L. | Lunetta, Kathryn L. | Lyketsos, Constantine G. | Mack, Wendy J. | Marson, Daniel C. | Martin, Eden R. | Martiniuk, Frank | Mash, Deborah C. | Masliah, Eliezer | McKee, Ann C. | Mesulam, Marsel | Miller, Bruce L. | Miller, Carol A. | Miller, Joshua W. | Montine, Thomas J. | Morris, John C. | Murrell, Jill R. | Naj, Adam C. | Olichney, John M. | Parisi, Joseph E. | Peskind, Elaine | Petersen, Ronald C. | Pierce, Aimee | Poon, Wayne W. | Potter, Huntington | Quinn, Joseph F. | Raj, Ashok | Raskind, Murray | Reiman, Eric M. | Reisberg, Barry | Reitz, Christiane | Ringman, John M. | Roberson, Erik D. | Rosen, Howard J. | Rosenberg, Roger N. | Sano, Mary | Saykin, Andrew J. | Schneider, Julie A. | Schneider, Lon S. | Seeley, William W. | Smith, Amanda G. | Sonnen, Joshua A. | Spina, Salvatore | Stern, Robert A. | Tanzi, Rudolph E. | Trojanowski, John Q. | Troncoso, Juan C. | Tsuang, Debby W. | Valladares, Otto | Van Deerlin, Vivianna M. | Van Eldik, Linda J. | Vardarajan, Badri N. | Vinters, Harry V. | Vonsattel, Jean Paul | Wang, Li-San | Weintraub, Sandra | Welsh-Bohmer, Kathleen A. | Williamson, Jennifer | Woltjer, Randall L. | Wright, Clinton B. | Younkin, Steven G. | Yu, Chang-En | Yu, Lei
Nature genetics  2012;44(12):1349-1354.
Pancreatitis is a complex, progressively destructive inflammatory disorder. Alcohol was long thought to be the primary causative agent, but genetic contributions have been of interest since the discovery that rare PRSS1, CFTR, and SPINK1 variants were associated with pancreatitis risk. We now report two significant genome-wide associations identified and replicated at PRSS1-PRSS2 (1×10-12) and x-linked CLDN2 (p < 1×10-21) through a two-stage genome-wide study (Stage 1, 676 cases and 4507 controls; Stage 2, 910 cases and 4170 controls). The PRSS1 variant affects susceptibility by altering expression of the primary trypsinogen gene. The CLDN2 risk allele is associated with atypical localization of claudin-2 in pancreatic acinar cells. The homozygous (or hemizygous male) CLDN2 genotype confers the greatest risk, and its alleles interact with alcohol consumption to amplify risk. These results could partially explain the high frequency of alcohol-related pancreatitis in men – male hemizygous frequency is 0.26, female homozygote is 0.07.
doi:10.1038/ng.2466
PMCID: PMC3510344  PMID: 23143602
2.  Common variants in MS4A4/MS4A6E, CD2uAP, CD33, and EPHA1 are associated with late-onset Alzheimer’s disease 
Naj, Adam C | Jun, Gyungah | Beecham, Gary W | Wang, Li-San | Vardarajan, Badri Narayan | Buros, Jacqueline | Gallins, Paul J | Buxbaum, Joseph D | Jarvik, Gail P | Crane, Paul K | Larson, Eric B | Bird, Thomas D | Boeve, Bradley F | Graff-Radford, Neill R | De Jager, Philip L | Evans, Denis | Schneider, Julie A | Carrasquillo, Minerva M | Ertekin-Taner, Nilufer | Younkin, Steven G | Cruchaga, Carlos | Kauwe, John SK | Nowotny, Petra | Kramer, Patricia | Hardy, John | Huentelman, Matthew J | Myers, Amanda J | Barmada, Michael M | Demirci, F. Yesim | Baldwin, Clinton T | Green, Robert C | Rogaeva, Ekaterina | St George-Hyslop, Peter | Arnold, Steven E | Barber, Robert | Beach, Thomas | Bigio, Eileen H | Bowen, James D | Boxer, Adam | Burke, James R | Cairns, Nigel J | Carlson, Chris S | Carney, Regina M | Carroll, Steven L | Chui, Helena C | Clark, David G | Corneveaux, Jason | Cotman, Carl W | Cummings, Jeffrey L | DeCarli, Charles | DeKosky, Steven T | Diaz-Arrastia, Ramon | Dick, Malcolm | Dickson, Dennis W | Ellis, William G | Faber, Kelley M | Fallon, Kenneth B | Farlow, Martin R | Ferris, Steven | Frosch, Matthew P | Galasko, Douglas R | Ganguli, Mary | Gearing, Marla | Geschwind, Daniel H | Ghetti, Bernardino | Gilbert, John R | Gilman, Sid | Giordani, Bruno | Glass, Jonathan D | Growdon, John H | Hamilton, Ronald L | Harrell, Lindy E | Head, Elizabeth | Honig, Lawrence S | Hulette, Christine M | Hyman, Bradley T | Jicha, Gregory A | Jin, Lee-Way | Johnson, Nancy | Karlawish, Jason | Karydas, Anna | Kaye, Jeffrey A | Kim, Ronald | Koo, Edward H | Kowall, Neil W | Lah, James J | Levey, Allan I | Lieberman, Andrew P | Lopez, Oscar L | Mack, Wendy J | Marson, Daniel C | Martiniuk, Frank | Mash, Deborah C | Masliah, Eliezer | McCormick, Wayne C | McCurry, Susan M | McDavid, Andrew N | McKee, Ann C | Mesulam, Marsel | Miller, Bruce L | Miller, Carol A | Miller, Joshua W | Parisi, Joseph E | Perl, Daniel P | Peskind, Elaine | Petersen, Ronald C | Poon, Wayne W | Quinn, Joseph F | Rajbhandary, Ruchita A | Raskind, Murray | Reisberg, Barry | Ringman, John M | Roberson, Erik D | Rosenberg, Roger N | Sano, Mary | Schneider, Lon S | Seeley, William | Shelanski, Michael L | Slifer, Michael A | Smith, Charles D | Sonnen, Joshua A | Spina, Salvatore | Stern, Robert A | Tanzi, Rudolph E | Trojanowski, John Q | Troncoso, Juan C | Deerlin, Vivianna M Van | Vinters, Harry V | Vonsattel, Jean Paul | Weintraub, Sandra | Welsh-Bohmer, Kathleen A | Williamson, Jennifer | Woltjer, Randall L | Cantwell, Laura B | Dombroski, Beth A | Beekly, Duane | Lunetta, Kathryn L | Martin, Eden R | Kamboh, M. Ilyas | Saykin, Andrew J | Reiman, Eric M | Bennett, David A | Morris, John C | Montine, Thomas J | Goate, Alison M | Blacker, Deborah | Tsuang, Debby W | Hakonarson, Hakon | Kukull, Walter A | Foroud, Tatiana M | Haines, Jonathan L | Mayeux, Richard | Pericak-Vance, Margaret A | Farrer, Lindsay A | Schellenberg, Gerard D
Nature genetics  2011;43(5):436-441.
The Alzheimer Disease Genetics Consortium (ADGC) performed a genome-wide association study (GWAS) of late-onset Alzheimer disease (LOAD) using a 3 stage design consisting of a discovery stage (Stage 1) and two replication stages (Stages 2 and 3). Both joint and meta-analysis analysis approaches were used. We obtained genome-wide significant results at MS4A4A [rs4938933; Stages 1+2, meta-analysis (PM) = 1.7 × 10−9, joint analysis (PJ) = 1.7 × 10−9; Stages 1–3, PM = 8.2 × 10−12], CD2AP (rs9349407; Stages 1–3, PM = 8.6 × 10−9), EPHA1 (rs11767557; Stages 1–3 PM = 6.0 × 10−10), and CD33 (rs3865444; Stages 1–3, PM = 1.6 × 10−9). We confirmed that CR1 (rs6701713; PM = 4.6×10−10, PJ = 5.2×10−11), CLU (rs1532278; PM = 8.3 × 10−8, PJ = 1.9×10−8), BIN1 (rs7561528; PM = 4.0×10−14; PJ = 5.2×10−14), and PICALM (rs561655; PM = 7.0 × 10−11, PJ = 1.0×10−10) but not EXOC3L2 are LOAD risk loci1–3.
doi:10.1038/ng.801
PMCID: PMC3090745  PMID: 21460841
3.  Raloxifene for women with Alzheimer disease 
Neurology  2015;85(22):1937-1944.
Objective:
To determine whether raloxifene, a selective estrogen receptor modulator, improves cognitive function compared with placebo in women with Alzheimer disease (AD) and to provide an estimate of cognitive effect.
Methods:
This pilot study was conducted as a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial, with a planned treatment of 12 months. Women with late-onset AD of mild to moderate severity were randomly allocated to high-dose (120 mg) oral raloxifene or identical placebo provided once daily. The primary outcome compared between treatment groups at 12 months was change in the Alzheimer's Disease Assessment Scale, cognitive subscale (ADAS-cog).
Results:
Forty-two women randomized to raloxifene or placebo were included in intent-to-treat analyses (mean age 76 years, range 68–84), and 39 women contributed 12-month outcomes. ADAS-cog change scores at 12 months did not differ significantly between treatment groups (standardized difference 0.03, 95% confidence interval −0.39 to 0.44, 2-tailed p = 0.89). Raloxifene and placebo groups did not differ significantly on secondary analyses of dementia rating, activities of daily living, behavior, or a global cognition composite score. Caregiver burden and caregiver distress were similar in both groups.
Conclusions:
Results on the primary outcome showed no cognitive benefits in the raloxifene-treated group.
Classification of evidence:
This study provides Class I evidence that for women with AD, raloxifene does not have a significant cognitive effect. The study lacked the precision to exclude a small effect.
doi:10.1212/WNL.0000000000002171
PMCID: PMC4664126  PMID: 26537053
4.  GWAS of longitudinal amyloid accumulation on 18F-florbetapir PET in Alzheimer’s disease implicates microglial activation gene IL1RAP 
Brain  2015;138(10):3076-3088.
In a genome-wide study, Ramanan et al. discover an association between the microglial activation gene IL1RAP and higher rates of amyloid plaque accumulation as measured by PET in prodromal Alzheimer’s disease. Activated microglia may be crucial in amyloid clearance, and targeting the interleukin-1/IL1RAP pathway may be a potential therapeutic approach.
In a genome-wide study, Ramanan et al. discover an association between the microglial activation gene IL1RAP and higher rates of amyloid plaque accumulation as measured by PET in prodromal Alzheimer’s disease. Activated microglia may be crucial in amyloid clearance, and targeting the interleukin-1/IL1RAP pathway may be a potential therapeutic approach.
Brain amyloid deposition is thought to be a seminal event in Alzheimer’s disease. To identify genes influencing Alzheimer’s disease pathogenesis, we performed a genome-wide association study of longitudinal change in brain amyloid burden measured by 18F-florbetapir PET. A novel association with higher rates of amyloid accumulation independent from APOE (apolipoprotein E) ε4 status was identified in IL1RAP (interleukin-1 receptor accessory protein; rs12053868-G; P = 1.38 × 10−9) and was validated by deep sequencing. IL1RAP rs12053868-G carriers were more likely to progress from mild cognitive impairment to Alzheimer’s disease and exhibited greater longitudinal temporal cortex atrophy on MRI. In independent cohorts rs12053868-G was associated with accelerated cognitive decline and lower cortical 11C-PBR28 PET signal, a marker of microglial activation. These results suggest a crucial role of activated microglia in limiting amyloid accumulation and nominate the IL-1/IL1RAP pathway as a potential target for modulating this process.
doi:10.1093/brain/awv231
PMCID: PMC4671479  PMID: 26268530
Alzheimer’s disease; amyloid; genetics; interleukin-1; microglia
5.  Cerebral amyloidosis associated with cognitive decline in autosomal dominant Alzheimer disease 
Neurology  2015;85(9):790-798.
Objective:
To investigate the associations of cerebral amyloidosis with concurrent cognitive performance and with longitudinal cognitive decline in asymptomatic and symptomatic stages of autosomal dominant Alzheimer disease (ADAD).
Methods:
Two hundred sixty-three participants enrolled in the Dominantly Inherited Alzheimer Network observational study underwent neuropsychological evaluation as well as PET scans with Pittsburgh compound B. One hundred twenty-one participants completed at least 1 follow-up neuropsychological evaluation. Four composite cognitive measures representing global cognition, episodic memory, language, and working memory were generated using z scores from a battery of 13 standard neuropsychological tests. General linear mixed-effects models were used to investigate the relationship between baseline cerebral amyloidosis and baseline cognitive performance and whether baseline cerebral amyloidosis predicts cognitive change over time (mean follow-up 2.32 years ± 0.92, range 0.89–4.19) after controlling for estimated years from expected symptom onset, APOE ε4 allelic status, and education.
Results:
In asymptomatic mutation carriers, amyloid burden was not associated with baseline cognitive functioning but was significantly predictive of longitudinal decline in episodic memory. In symptomatic mutation carriers, cerebral amyloidosis was correlated with worse baseline performance in multiple cognitive composites and predicted greater decline over time in global cognition, working memory, and Mini-Mental State Examination.
Conclusions:
Cerebral amyloidosis predicts longitudinal episodic memory decline in presymptomatic ADAD and multidomain cognitive decline in symptomatic ADAD. These findings imply that amyloidosis in the brain is an indicator of early cognitive decline and provides a useful outcome measure for early assessment and prevention treatment trials.
doi:10.1212/WNL.0000000000001903
PMCID: PMC4553024  PMID: 26245925
6.  GDNF secreted from adipose-derived stem cells stimulates VEGF-independent angiogenesis 
Oncotarget  2016;7(24):36829-36841.
Adipose tissue stroma contains a population of mesenchymal stem cells (MSC) promote new blood vessel formation and stabilization. These adipose-derived stem cells (ASC) promote de novo formation of vascular structures in vitro. We investigated the angiogenic factors secreted by ASC and discovered that glial-derived neurotrophic factor (GDNF) is a key mediator for endothelial cell network formation. It was found that both GDNF alone or present in ASC-conditioned medium (ASC-CM) stimulated capillary network formation by using human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs) and such an effect was totally independent of vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) activity. Additionally, we showed stimulation of capillary network formation by GDNF, but not VEGF, could be blocked by the Ret (rearranged during transfection) receptor antagonist RPI-1, a GDNF signaling inhibitor. Furthermore, GDNF were found to be overexpressed in cancer cells that were resistant to the anti-angiogenic treatment using the VEGF antibody. Cancer cells in the liver hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), a non-nervous related cancer, highly overexpressed GDNF as compared to normal liver cells. Our data strongly suggest that, in addition to VEGF, GDNF secreted by ASC and HCC cells, may be another important factor promoting pathological neovascularization. Thus, GDNF may be a potential therapeutic target for HCC and obesity treatments.
doi:10.18632/oncotarget.9208
PMCID: PMC5095042  PMID: 27167204
ASC-CM; GDNF; VEGF; angiogenesis; hepatocellular carcinoma
8.  FASTKD2 is associated with memory and hippocampal structure in older adults 
Molecular psychiatry  2014;20(10):1197-1204.
Memory impairment is the cardinal early feature of Alzheimer's disease (AD), a highly prevalent disorder whose causes remain only partially understood. To identify novel genetic predictors, we used an integrative genomics approach to perform the largest study to date of human memory (n=14,781). Using a genome-wide screen, we discovered a novel association of a polymorphism in the pro-apoptotic gene FASTKD2 (fas-activated serine/threonine kinase domains 2; rs7594645-G) with better memory performance and replicated this finding in independent samples. Consistent with a neuroprotective effect, rs7594645-G carriers exhibited increased hippocampal volume and gray matter density and decreased cerebrospinal fluid levels of apoptotic mediators. The MTOR (mechanistic target of rapamycin) gene and pathways related to endocytosis, cholinergic neurotransmission, EGFR signaling, and immune regulation, among others, also displayed association with memory. These findings nominate FASTKD2 as a target for modulating neurodegeneration and suggest potential mechanisms for therapies to combat memory loss in normal cognitive aging and dementia.
doi:10.1038/mp.2014.142
PMCID: PMC4427556  PMID: 25385369
genome-wide association study (GWAS); Alzheimer's disease (AD); dementia; cognitive aging; memory; magnetic resonance imaging (MRI); apoptosis; neurodegeneration
9.  Factors Associated With the Onset and Persistence of Post–Lumbar Puncture Headache 
JAMA neurology  2015;72(3):325-332.
IMPORTANCE
This study assesses factors associated with the most common adverse event following lumbar puncture.
OBJECTIVE
To identify factors associated with the risk, onset, and persistence of post–dural puncture headache (PDPH).
DESIGN, SETTING, AND PARTICIPANTS
We performed univariate and multivariable analyses of 338 lumbar punctures in the Dominantly Inherited Alzheimer Network observational study using linear mixed models, adjusting for participant-level and family-level random effects.
MAIN OUTCOMES AND MEASURES
We directly evaluated associations of 3 post–lumbar puncture outcomes (immediate postprocedural headache, PDPH at 24-hour follow-up, and PDPH receiving a therapeutic blood patch) with participant age and sex, positioning, collection method, needle size, needle insertion site, and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) volume collected.
RESULTS
The incidence of adverse events included 73 immediate postprocedural headaches (21.6%), 59 PDPHs at 24-hour follow-up (17.5%), and 15 PDPHs receiving a therapeutic blood patch (4.4%). Greater volume of CSF collected was associated with increased risk of immediate postprocedural headache, largely owing to a nonlinear increase in risk on collection of volumes above 30 mL (odds ratio, 3.73 for >30 mL and 0.98 for <17 mL). In contrast, collection of higher volumes showed a protective effect in decreasing rates of PDPH at 24-hour follow-up and rates of PDPH receiving a therapeutic blood patch (odds ratio, 0.35 per 10 mL). Although differences in needle size did not reach statistical significance, no participant in the 24G needle group received a therapeutic blood patch compared to 8 of 253 for the larger 22G needles.
CONCLUSIONS AND RELEVANCE
Factors that acutely lower CSF pressure (eg, seated positioning or extracting very high volumes of CSF) may be associated with transient post-lumbar puncture headache, without increasing rates of persistent PDPH or therapeutic blood patch. Collection of up to 30 mL of CSF appears to be well tolerated and safe.
doi:10.1001/jamaneurol.2014.3974
PMCID: PMC4364538  PMID: 25622095
10.  Protective Variant for Hippocampal Atrophy Identified by Whole Exome Sequencing 
Annals of neurology  2015;77(3):547-552.
We used whole-exome sequencing to identify variants other than APOE associated with the rate of hippocampal atrophy in amnestic mild cognitive impairment. An in-silico predicted missense variant in REST (rs3796529) was found exclusively in subjects with slow hippocampal volume loss and validated using unbiased whole-brain analysis and meta-analysis across 5 independent cohorts. REST is a master regulator of neurogenesis and neuronal differentiation that has not been previously implicated in Alzheimer’s disease. These findings nominate REST and its functional pathways as protective and illustrate the potential of combining next-generation sequencing with neuroimaging to discover novel disease mechanisms and potential therapeutic targets.
doi:10.1002/ana.24349
PMCID: PMC4387567  PMID: 25559091
11.  [11C]PiB PET in Gerstmann-Sträussler-Scheinker disease 
Gerstmann-Sträussler-Scheinker Disease (GSS) is a familial neurodegenerative disorder characterized clinically by ataxia, parkinsonism, and dementia, and neuropathologically by deposition of diffuse and amyloid plaques composed of prion protein (PrP). The purpose of this study was to evaluate if [11C]Pittsburgh Compound B (PiB) positron emission tomography (PET) is capable of detecting PrP-amyloid in PRNP gene carriers. Six individuals at risk for GSS and eight controls underwent [11C]PiB PET scans using standard methods. Approximately one year after the initial scan, each of the three asymptomatic carriers (two with PRNP P102L mutation, one with PRNP F198S mutation) underwent a second [11C]PiB PET scan. Three P102L carriers, one F198S carrier, and one non-carrier of the F198S mutation were cognitively normal, while one F198S carrier was cognitively impaired during the course of this study. No [11C]PiB uptake was observed in any subject at baseline or at follow-up. Neuropathologic study of the symptomatic individual revealed PrP-immunopositive plaques and tau-immunopositive neurofibrillary tangles in cerebral cortex, subcortical nuclei, and brainstem. PrP deposits were also numerous in the cerebellar cortex. This is the first study to investigate the ability of [11C]PiB PET to bind to PrP-amyloid in GSS F198S subjects. This finding suggests that [11C]PiB PET is not suitable for in vivo assessment of PrP-amyloid plaques in patients with GSS.
PMCID: PMC4749507  PMID: 27069768
[11C]Pittsburgh compound B (PiB) positron emission tomography (PET); Gerstmann-Sträussler-Scheinker disease (GSS); prion disease; neuroimaging; amyloid
12.  Comprehensive Gene- and Pathway-Based Analysis of Depressive Symptoms in Older Adults 
Journal of Alzheimer's disease : JAD  2015;45(4):1197-1206.
Depressive symptoms are common in older adults and are particularly prevalent in those with or at elevated risk for dementia. Although the heritability of depression is estimated to be substantial, single nucleotide polymorphism-based genome-wide association studies of depressive symptoms have had limited success. In this study, we PERFORMED genome-wide gene- and pathway-based analyses of depressive symptom burden. Study participants included non-Hispanic Caucasian subjects (n = 6,884) from three independent cohorts, the Alzheimer’s Disease Neuroimaging Initiative (ADNI), the Health and Retirement Study (HRS), and the Indiana Memory and Aging Study (IMAS). Gene-based meta-analysis identified genome-wide significant associations (ANGPT4 and FAM110A, q-value = 0.026; GRM7-AS3 and LRFN5, q-value = 0.042). Pathway analysis revealed enrichment of association in 105 pathways, including multiple pathways related to ERK/MAPK signaling,GSK3 signaling in bipolar disorder, cell development, and immune activation and inflammation. GRM7, ANGPT4, and LRFN5 have been previously implicated in psychiatric disorders, including the GRM7 region displaying association with major depressive disorder. The ERK/MAPK signaling pathway is a known target of antidepressant drugs and has important roles in neuronal plasticity, and GSK3 signaling has been previously implicated in Alzheimer’s disease and as a promising therapeutic target for depression. Our results warrant further investigation in independent and larger cohorts and add to the growing understanding of the genetics and pathobiology of depressive symptoms in aging and neurodegenerative disorders. In particular, the genes and pathways demonstrating association with depressive symptoms may be potential therapeutic targets for these symptoms in older adults.
doi:10.3233/JAD-148009
PMCID: PMC4398648  PMID: 25690665
ANGPT4; depressive symptoms; genome-wide association study; GRM7; GSK3; MAPK-ERK
13.  Adipose-derived Stem Cell Conditioned Media Extends Survival time of a mouse model of Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis 
Scientific Reports  2015;5:16953.
Adipose stromal cells (ASC) secrete various trophic factors that assist in the protection of neurons in a variety of neuronal death models. In this study, we tested the effects of human ASC conditional medium (ASC-CM) in human amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) transgenic mouse model expressing mutant superoxide dismutase (SOD1G93A). Treating symptomatic SOD1G93A mice with ASC-CM significantly increased post-onset survival time and lifespan. Moreover, SOD1G93A mice given ASC-CM treatment showed high motor neuron counts, less activation of microglia and astrocytes at an early symptomatic stage in the spinal cords under immunohistochemical analysis. SOD1G93A mice treated with ASC-CM for 7 days showed reduced levels of phosphorylated p38 (pp38) in the spinal cord, a mitogen-activated protein kinase that is involved in both inflammation and neuronal death. Additionally, the levels of α-II spectrin in spinal cords were also inhibited in SOD1G93A mice treated with ASC-CM for 3 days. Interestingly, nerve growth factor (NGF), a neurotrophic factor found in ASC-CM, played a significant role in the protection of neurodegeneration inSOD1G93A mouse. These results indicate that ASC-CM has the potential to develop into a novel and effective therapeutic treatment for ALS.
doi:10.1038/srep16953
PMCID: PMC4653659  PMID: 26586020
14.  A 24-Week, Randomized, Controlled Trial of Rivastigmine Patch 13.3 mg/24 h Versus 4.6 mg/24 h in Severe Alzheimer's Dementia 
CNS Neuroscience & Therapeutics  2013;19(10):745-752.
Aims
The 24-week, prospective, randomized, double-blind ACTION study investigated the efficacy, safety, and tolerability of 13.3 versus 4.6 mg/24 h rivastigmine patch in patients with severe Alzheimer's disease (AD).
Methods
Patients had probable AD and Mini–Mental State Examination scores ≥3–≤12. Primary outcome measures were as follows: Severe Impairment Battery (SIB) and AD Cooperative Study–Activities of Daily Living scale–Severe Impairment Version (ADCS-ADL-SIV). Secondary outcomes were as follows: ADCS-Clinical Global Impression of Change (ADCS-CGIC), 12-item Neuropsychiatric Inventory (NPI-12), and safety/tolerability.
Results
Of 1014 patients screened, 716 were randomized to 13.3 mg/24 h (N = 356) or 4.6 mg/24 h (N = 360) patch. Baseline characteristics/demographics were comparable. Completion rates were as follows: 64.3% (N = 229) with 13.3 mg/24 h and 65.0% (N = 234) with 4.6 mg/24 h patch. The 13.3 mg/24 h patch was significantly superior to 4.6 mg/24 h patch on cognition (SIB) and function (ADCS-ADL-SIV) at Week 16 (P < 0.0001 and P = 0.049, respectively) and 24 (primary endpoint; P < 0.0001 and P = 0.025). Significant between-group differences (Week 24) were observed on the ADCS-CGIC (P = 0.0023), not NPI-12 (P = 0.1437). A similar proportion of the 13.3 mg/24 h and 4.6 mg/24 h patch groups reported adverse events (AEs; 74.6% and 73.3%, respectively) and serious AEs (14.9% and 13.6%).
Conclusions
The 13.3 mg/24 h patch demonstrated superior efficacy to 4.6 mg/24 h patch on SIB and ADCS-ADL-SIV, without marked increase in AEs, suggesting higher-dose patch has a favorable benefit-to-risk profile in severe AD.
doi:10.1111/cns.12158
PMCID: PMC4233957  PMID: 23924050
Clinical trial; Rivastigmine; Severe Alzheimer's disease; Transdermal patch
15.  An integrated multi-study analysis of intra-subject variability in cerebrospinal fluid amyloid-β concentrations collected by lumbar puncture and indwelling lumbar catheter 
Introduction
Amyloid-β (Aβ) has been investigated as a diagnostic biomarker and therapeutic drug target. Recent studies found that cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) Aβ fluctuates over time, including as a diurnal pattern, and increases in absolute concentration with serial collection. It is currently unknown what effect differences in CSF collection methodology have on Aβ variability. In this study, we sought to determine the effect of different collection methodologies on the stability of CSF Aβ concentrations over time.
Methods
Grouped analysis of CSF Aβ levels from multiple industry and academic groups collected by either lumbar puncture (n=83) or indwelling lumbar catheter (n=178). Participants were either placebo or untreated subjects from clinical drug trials or observational studies. Participants had CSF collected by lumbar puncture or lumbar catheter for quantitation of Aβ concentration by enzyme linked immunosorbent assay. Data from all sponsors was converted to percent of the mean for Aβ40 and Aβ42 for comparison. Repeated measures analysis of variance was performed to assess for factors affecting the linear rise of Aβ concentrations over time.
Results
Analysis of studies collecting CSF via lumbar catheter revealed tremendous inter-subject variability of Aβ40 and Aβ42 as well as an Aβ diurnal pattern in all of the sponsors’ studies. In contrast, Aβ concentrations from CSF samples collected at two time points by lumbar puncture showed no significant differences. Repeated measures analysis of variance found that only time and draw frequency were significantly associated with the slope of linear rise in Aβ40 and Aβ42 concentrations during the first 6 hours of collection.
Conclusions
Based on our findings, we recommend minimizing the frequency of CSF draws in studies measuring Aβ levels and keeping the frequency standardized between experimental groups. The Aβ diurnal pattern was noted in all sponsors’ studies and was not an artifact of study design. Averaging Aβ concentrations at each time point is recommended to minimize the effect of individual variability. Indwelling lumbar catheters are an invaluable research tool for following changes in CSF Aβ over 24-48 hours, but factors affecting Aβ concentration such as linear rise and diurnal variation need to be accounted for in planning study designs.
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1186/s13195-015-0136-z) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
doi:10.1186/s13195-015-0136-z
PMCID: PMC4518529  PMID: 26225140
16.  Genome-wide association study of corticobasal degeneration identifies risk variants shared with progressive supranuclear palsy 
Nature Communications  2015;6:7247.
Corticobasal degeneration (CBD) is a neurodegenerative disorder affecting movement and cognition, definitively diagnosed only at autopsy. Here, we conduct a genome-wide association study (GWAS) in CBD cases (n=152) and 3,311 controls, and 67 CBD cases and 439 controls in a replication stage. Associations with meta-analysis were 17q21 at MAPT (P=1.42 × 10−12), 8p12 at lnc-KIF13B-1, a long non-coding RNA (rs643472; P=3.41 × 10−8), and 2p22 at SOS1 (rs963731; P=1.76 × 10−7). Testing for association of CBD with top progressive supranuclear palsy (PSP) GWAS single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) identified associations at MOBP (3p22; rs1768208; P=2.07 × 10−7) and MAPT H1c (17q21; rs242557; P=7.91 × 10−6). We previously reported SNP/transcript level associations with rs8070723/MAPT, rs242557/MAPT, and rs1768208/MOBP and herein identified association with rs963731/SOS1. We identify new CBD susceptibility loci and show that CBD and PSP share a genetic risk factor other than MAPT at 3p22 MOBP (myelin-associated oligodendrocyte basic protein).
Corticobasal degeneration is a rare neurodegenerative disorder that can only be definitively diagnosed by autopsy. Here, Kouri et al. conduct a genome-wide-association study and identify two genetic susceptibility loci 17q21 (MAPT) and 3p12 (MOBP), and a novel susceptibility locus at 8p12.
doi:10.1038/ncomms8247
PMCID: PMC4469997  PMID: 26077951
17.  The Role of Choroid Plexus In IVIG-induced Beta-Amyloid Clearance 
Neuroscience  2014;270:168-176.
We have shown that intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIG) contains anti-Aβ autoantibodies and IVIG could induce beta amyloid (Aβ) efflux from cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) to blood in both Multiple Sclerosis (MS) and Alzheimer disease (AD) patients. However, the molecular mechanism underlying IVIG-induced Aβ efflux remains unclear. In this study, we used amyloid precursor protein (AβPP) transgenic mice to investigate if the IVIG could induce efflux of Aβ from the brain and whether low-density lipoprotein receptor-related protein-1 (LRP1), a hypothetic Aβ transporter in blood-cerebrospinal fluid barrier (BCB); could mediate this clearance process. We currently provide strong evidence to demonstrate that IVIG could reduce brain Aβ levels by pulling Aβ into the blood system in AβPP transgenic mice. In the mechanistic study, IVIG could induce Aβ efflux through the in-vitro BCB membrane formed by cultured BCB epithelial cells. Both RAP (receptor-associated protein; a functional inhibitor of LRP1), and LRP1 siRNA were able to significantly inhibit the Aβ efflux. Should Aβ prove to be the underlying cause of AD, our results strongly suggest that IVIG could be beneficial in the therapy for Alzheimer's disease (AD) by inducing efflux of Aβ from the brain through the LRP1 in the BCB.
doi:10.1016/j.neuroscience.2014.04.011
PMCID: PMC4035429  PMID: 24747018
Choroid Plexus; IVIG; LRP1; Aβ clearance
18.  Long-term treatment with active Aβ immunotherapy with CAD106 in mild Alzheimer’s disease 
Introduction
CAD106 is designed to stimulate amyloid-β (Aβ)-specific antibody responses while avoiding T-cell autoimmune responses. The CAD106 first-in-human study demonstrated a favorable safety profile and promising antibody response. We investigated long-term safety, tolerability and antibody response after repeated CAD106 injections.
Methods
Two phase IIa, 52-week, multicenter, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled core studies (2201; 2202) and two 66-week open-label extension studies (2201E; 2202E) were conducted in patients with mild Alzheimer’s disease (AD) aged 40 to 85 years. Patients were randomized to receive 150μg CAD106 or placebo given as three subcutaneous (2201) or subcutaneous/intramuscular (2202) injections, followed by four injections (150 μg CAD106; subcutaneous, 2201E1; intramuscular, 2202E1). Our primary objective was to evaluate the safety and tolerability of repeated injections, including monitoring cerebral magnetic resonance imaging scans, adverse events (AEs) and serious AEs (SAEs). Further objectives were to assess Aβ-specific antibody response in serum and Aβ-specific T-cell response (core only). Comparable Aβ-immunoglobulin G (IgG) exposure across studies supported pooled immune response assessments.
Results
Fifty-eight patients were randomized (CAD106, n = 47; placebo, n = 11). Baseline demographics and characteristics were balanced. Forty-five patients entered extension studies. AEs occurred in 74.5% of CAD106-treated patients versus 63.6% of placebo-treated patients (core), and 82.2% experienced AEs during extension studies. Most AEs were mild to moderate in severity, were not study medication-related and did not require discontinuation. SAEs occurred in 19.1% of CAD106-treated patients and 36.4% of placebo-treated patients (core). One patient (CAD106-treated; 2201) reported a possibly study drug-related SAE of intracerebral hemorrhage. Four patients met criteria for amyloid-related imaging abnormalities (ARIA) corresponding to microhemorrhages: one was CAD106-treated (2201), one placebo-treated (2202) and two open-label CAD106-treated. No ARIA corresponded to vasogenic edema. Two patients discontinued extension studies because of SAEs (rectal neoplasm and rapid AD progression, respectively). Thirty CAD106-treated patients (63.8%) were serological responders. Sustained Aβ-IgG titers and prolonged time to decline were observed in extensions versus core studies. Neither Aβ1–6 nor Aβ1–42 induced specific T-cell responses; however, positive control responses were consistently detected with the CAD106 carrier.
Conclusions
No unexpected safety findings or Aβ-specific T-cell responses support the CAD106 favorable tolerability profile. Long-term treatment-induced Aβ-specific antibody titers and prolonged time to decline indicate antibody exposure may increase with additional injections. CAD106 may be a valuable therapeutic option in AD.
Trial registration
ClinicalTrials.gov identifiers: NCT00733863, registered 8 August 2008; NCT00795418, registered 10 November 2008; NCT00956410, registered 10 August 2009; NCT01023685, registered 1 December 2009.
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1186/s13195-015-0108-3) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
doi:10.1186/s13195-015-0108-3
PMCID: PMC4410460  PMID: 25918556
19.  Comparing Clinical Profiles in Alzheimer's Disease and Parkinson's Disease Dementia 
Background
Greater understanding of differences in baseline impairment and disease progression in patients with Alzheimer's disease (AD) and Parkinson's disease dementia (PDD) may improve the interpretation of drug effects and the design of future studies.
Methods
This was a retrospective analysis of three randomized, double-blind rivastigmine databases (one in PDD, two in AD). Impairment on the Alzheimer's Disease Assessment Scale-cognitive subscale (ADAS-cog), Alzheimer's Disease Cooperative Study-Activities of Daily Living (ADCS-ADL) scale, 10-item Neuropsychiatric Inventory (NPI-10) and the ADCS-Clinical Global Impression of Change (CGIC) was compared [standardized difference (Cohen's d), similar if <0.1].
Results
Patients with AD or PDD had similar levels of impairment on the ADAS-cog and NPI-10. Scores on the ADCS-ADL scale (standardized difference = 0.47) and the ADAS-cog memory domain (total, 0.33; items, 0.10-0.58) were higher in AD; PDD patients were more impaired in the language (0.23) and praxis (0.34) domains. AD patients receiving placebo showed greater deterioration on the ADAS-cog (0.14) and improvement on the NPI-10 (0.11) compared with patients with PDD.
Conclusion
Differing patterns of impairment occur in AD and PDD.
doi:10.1159/000351861
PMCID: PMC3808221  PMID: 24174923
Alzheimer's disease; Parkinson's disease dementia; Rivastigmine; Alzheimer's Disease Assessment Scale–cognitive subscale; Alzheimer's Disease Cooperative Study–Activities of Daily Living scale; 10-item Neuropsychiatric Inventory; Alzheimer's Disease Cooperative Study–Clinical Global Impression of Change

20.  Cerebral hypometabolism and grey matter density in MAPT intron 10 +3 mutation carriers 
Multiple systems tauopathy with presenile dementia (MSTD), a form of frontotemporal dementia with parkinsonism-17 with tau inclusions (FTDP-17T), is a neurodegenerative disorder caused by an (a) to (g) transition at position +3 of intron 10 of the microtubule associated protein tau (MAPT) gene. The mutation causes overexpression of 4 repeat (4R) tau isoforms with increased 4R/3R ratio leading to neurodegeneration. Clinically, these patients primarily present with behavioral variant FTD (bvFTD) and show disinhibition, disordered social comportment, and impaired executive function, memory, and speech. While altered glucose metabolism has been reported in subjects with sporadic bvFTD, it has yet to be investigated in an FTDP-17 sample of this size. In this study, eleven mutation carriers (5 males; mean age = 48.0 ± 6.9 years) and eight non-carriers (2 males; mean age = 43.7 ± 12.0 years) from a MSTD family were imaged using [18F]fluorodeoxyglucose (FDG) positron emission tomography (PET). Eight of the MAPT intron 10 +3 mutation carriers met diagnostic criteria for bvFTD at the time of the PET scan, while three MAPT intron 10 +3 carriers were not cognitively impaired at the time of scan. Non-carriers had no clinically-relevant cognitive impairment at the time of the PET scan. Additionally, ten mutation carriers (5 males; mean age = 48.04 ± 2.1 years) and seven non-carriers (2 males; mean age 46.1 ± 4.1 years) underwent magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) which is an expanded sample size from a previous study. Seven MAPT mutation carriers met diagnostic criteria for bvFTD at the time of the MRI scan. Images were assessed on a voxel-wise basis for the effect of mutation carrier status. SPM8 was used for preprocessing and statistical analyses. Compared to non-carriers, MAPT mutation carriers showed lower [18F]FDG uptake bilaterally in the medial temporal lobe, and the parietal and frontal cortices. Anatomical changes were predominantly seen bilaterally in the medial temporal lobe areas which substantially overlapped with the hypometabolism findings. These anatomical and metabolic changes overlap previously described patterns of neurodegeneration in MSTD patients and are consistent with the characteristics of their cognitive dysfunction. These results suggest that neuroimaging can describe the neuropathology associated with this MAPT mutation.
PMCID: PMC4299725  PMID: 25628962
Multiple system tauopathy with presenile dementia (MSTD); frontotemporal dementia with parkinsonism-17 with tau inclusions (FTDP-17T); behavioral variant frontotemporal dementia; [18F]fluorodeoxyglucose positron emission tomography ([18F]FDG PET); microtubule associated protein tau (MAPT); magentic resonance imaging (MRI); neuroimaging
21.  Cognitive Dysfunction is Associated with Increased Visit to Visit Systolic Blood Pressure Variability 
Objectives
Hypertension is a modifiable risk factor for cognitive decline. We tested the hypothesis that greater variability in blood pressure is negatively associated with performance on cognitive testing.
Design
Multinational, longitudinal, observational cohort study.
Setting
The Alzheimer's Disease Neuroimaging Initiative study.
Participants
A total of 626 subjects had a screening diagnosis of mild cognitive impairment or normal cognition.
Measurements
Blood pressure mean, variance, and maximum were calculated based on measures collected from screening to 36 months. Analysis of covariance models were used to determine the association between blood pressure measures and cognitive scores at 36 months after adjusting for covariates.
Results
Greater variability in systolic (p < 0.05) but not diastolic (p > 0.18) blood pressure was associated with worse global (ADAS-COG and CDR)and executive functioning (Trail Making B, Animal Fluency, and Vegetable Fluency)and episodic memory (Rey Auditory Verbal Learning Test Total Score).
Conclusion
There is a clinically significant association between increased systolic blood pressure variability and greater cognitive dysfunction. These results should be verified in other well-characterized cohorts, and the neuroanatomical pathophysiology underlying the observed greater cognitive impairment should be further explored.
PMCID: PMC3923497  PMID: 24479146
Hypertension; Stroke and Cognition
22.  PARP1 gene variation and microglial activity on [11C]PBR28 PET in older adults at risk for Alzheimer's disease 
Increasing evidence suggests that inflammation is one pathophysio-logical mechanism in Alzheimer's disease (AD). Recent studies have identifiedan association between the poly (ADP-ribose) polymerase 1 (PARP1) gene and AD. This gene encodes a protein that is involved in many biological functions, including DNA repair and chromatin remodeling, and is a mediator of inflammation. Therefore, we performed a targeted genetic association analysis to investigate the relationship between the PARP1 polymorphisms and brain micro-glial activity as indexed by [11C]PBR28 positron emission tomography (PET). Participants were 26 non-Hispanic Caucasians in the Indiana Memory and Aging Study (IMAS). PET data were intensity-normalized by injected dose/total body weight. Average PBR standardized uptake values (SUV) from 6 bilateral regions of interest (thalamus, frontal, parietal, temporal, and cingulate cortices, and whole brain gray matter) were used as endophenotypes. Single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) with 20% minor allele frequency that were within +/− 20 kb of the PARP1 gene were included in the analyses. Gene-level association analyses were performed using a dominant genetic model with translocator protein (18-kDa) (TSPO) genotype, age at PET scan, and gender as covariates. Analyses were performed with and without APOE ε4 status as a covariate. Associations with PBR SUVs from thalamus and cingulate were significant at corrected p<0.014 and <0.065, respectively. Subsequent multi-marker analysis with cingulate PBR SUV showed that individuals with the “C” allele at rs6677172 and “A” allele at rs61835377 had higher PBR SUV than individuals without these alleles (corrected P<0.03), and individuals with the “G” allele at rs6677172 and “G” allele at rs61835377 displayed the opposite trend (corrected P<0.065). A previous study with the same cohort showed an inverse relationship between PBR SUV and brain atrophy at a follow-up visit, suggesting possible protective effect of microglial activity against cortical atrophy. Interestingly, all 6 AD and 2 of 3 LMCI participants in the current analysis had one or more copies of the “GG” allele combination, associated with lower cingulate PBR SUV, suggesting that this gene variant warrants further investigation.
doi:10.1007/978-3-319-02126-3_15
PMCID: PMC4224281  PMID: 25383391
23.  Altered Default Mode Network Connectivity in Older Adults with Cognitive Complaints and Amnestic Mild Cognitive Impairment 
Default mode network (DMN) disruption has been reported in Alzheimer’s disease (AD), yet the specific pattern of altered connectivity over the course of prodromal AD remains to be characterized. The aim of this study was to assess DMN connectivity in older adults with informant-verified cognitive complaints (CC) but normal neuropsychological performance compared to individuals with mild cognitive impairment (MCI) and healthy controls (HC). DMN maps were derived from resting-state fMRI using independent component analysis. Group comparisons of DMN connectivity were performed between older adults with MCI (n = 18), CC (n = 23), and HC (n = 16). Both CC and MCI showed decreased DMN connectivity in the right hippocampus compared to HC, with the CC group showing greater connectivity than MCI. These differences survived atrophy correction and correlated with cognitive performance. DMN connectivity appears sensitive to early prodromal neurodegenerative changes associated with AD, notably including pre-MCI individuals with cognitive complaints.
doi:10.3233/JAD-130080
PMCID: PMC3962306  PMID: 23481685
Alzheimer’s disease; cognitive complaints; default mode network; functional connectivity; hippocampus; memory; mild cognitive impairment
24.  Effectiveness and Tolerability of High-Dose (23 mg/d) Versus Standard-Dose (10 mg/d) Donepezil in Moderate to Severe Alzheimer’s Disease: A 24-Week, Randomized, Double-Blind Study 
Clinical therapeutics  2010;32(7):1234-1251.
Background
Currently approved Alzheimer’s disease (AD) treatments have been reported to provide symptomatic benefit, without proven impact on clinical progression. We hypothesized that the loss of initial therapeutic benefit over time may be mitigated by higher doses of a cholinesterase inhibitor.
Objective
The aim of this study was to determine the effectiveness and tolerability of increasing donepezil from 10 to 23 mg/d in patients with moderate to severe AD.
Methods
This randomized, double-blind study was conducted at 219 sites in Asia, Europe, Australia, North America, South Africa, and South America from June 6, 2007, to March 27, 2009. Patients aged 45 to 90 years with probable AD, Mini-Mental State Examination score 0 to 20 (moderate to severe impairment), and who were receiving donepezil 10 mg once daily for ≥12 weeks before the start of the study were eligible. Patients (n = 1467) were randomly assigned to receive high-dose donepezil (23 mg once daily) or standard-dose donepezil (10 mg once daily) for 24 weeks. Coprimary effectiveness measures were changes in cognition and global functioning, as assessed using least squares mean changes from baseline (LSM [SE] Δ) scores (last observation carried forward) on the Severe Impairment Battery (SIB; cognition) and the Clinician’s Interview-Based Impression of Change Plus Caregiver Input scale (CIBIC+; global function rating) overall change score (mean [SD]) at week 24. Treatment-emergent adverse events (TEAEs) were assessed using spontaneous patient/caregiver reporting and open-ended questioning; clinical laboratory testing (hematology, biochemistry, and urinalysis panels analyzed by a central laboratory); 12-lead ECG; and physical and neurologic examinations, including vital sign measurements.
Results
The effectiveness analyses included 1371 patients (mean age, 73.8 years; 62.8% female; 73.5% white; weight range, 34.0–138.7 kg). A total of 296 of 981 patients (30.2%) withdrew from the donepezil 23-mg/d group; 87 of 486 patients (17.9%) withdrew from the donepezil 10-mg/d group. At study end (week 24), the LSM (SE) Δ in SIB score was significantly greater with donepezil 23 mg/d than with donepezil 10 mg/d (+2.6 [0.58] vs +0.4 [0.66], respectively; difference, 2.2; P < 0.001). The between-treatment difference in CIBIC+ score was nonsignificant (4.23 [1.07] vs 4.29 [1.07]). In post hoc analysis, LSM Δ in SIB score and CIBIC+ treatment effect at end point were greater with donepezil 23 mg/d than 10 mg/d in patients with more advanced AD compared with less impaired patients (SIB, +1.6 [0.78] vs −1.5 [0.88], respectively [P < 0.001]; CIBIC+, 4.31 [1.09] vs 4.42 [1.10] [P = 0.028]). TEAEs were reported in 710 of 963 patients (73.7%) who received donepezil 23 mg/d and in 300 of 471 patients (63.7%) who received donepezil 10 mg/d. With donepezil 23 mg/d, mild, moderate, and severe TEAEs were reported in 297 (30.8%), 332 (34.5%), and 81 (8.4%) patients, respectively; with donepezil 10 mg/d, these proportions were 147 (31.2%), 119 (25.3%), and 34 (7.2%). The 3 most common severe AEs reported with the 23-mg/d dose were nausea (9 patients [0.9%] vs 1 [0.2%] with the 10-mg/d dose), dizziness (7 [0.7%] vs 1 [0.2%]), and vomiting (6 [0.6%] vs 0). The most commonly reported TEAEs considered probably related to treatment with the 23-mg/d dose were nausea (59 patients [6.1%] vs 9 [1.9%] with the 10-mg/d dose), vomiting (48 [5.0%] vs 4 [0.8%]), and diarrhea (31 [3.2%] vs 7 [1.5%]). Thirteen deaths were reported during the study or within 30 days of study discontinuation (23 mg/d, 8 patients [0.8%]; 10 mg/d, 5 patients [1.1%]); all were considered unrelated to the study medication.
Conclusions
In this study in patients with moderate to severe AD, donepezil 23 mg/d was associated with greater benefits in cognition compared with donepezil 10 mg/d. The between-treatment difference in global functioning was not significant in the overall population. Patients with more advanced AD appeared to benefit from donepezil 23 mg/d on the assessment of global functioning, but this observation requires additional studies for confirmation.
doi:10.1016/j.clinthera.2010.06.019
PMCID: PMC3068609  PMID: 20678673
Alzheimer’s disease; cognitive disorders; dementia; randomized controlled clinical trials
25.  Increased β-Amyloid Deposition in Tg-SWDI Transgenic Mouse Brain Following In Vivo Lead Exposure 
Toxicology letters  2012;213(2):211-219.
Previous studies in humans and animals have suggested a possible association between lead (Pb) exposure and the etiology of Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Animals acutely exposed to Pb display an over-expressed amyloid precursor protein (APP) and the ensuing accumulation of beta-amyloid (Aβ) in brain extracellular spaces. This study was designed to examine whether in vivo Pb exposure increased brain concentrations of Aβ, resulting in amyloid plaque deposition in brain tissues. Human Tg-SWDI APP transgenic mice, which genetically over-express amyloid plaques at age of 2-3 months, received oral gavages of 50 mg/kg Pb acetate once daily for 6 wk; a control group of the same mouse strain received the same molar concentration of Na acetate. ELISA results revealed a significant increase of Aβ in the CSF, brain cortex and hippocampus. Immunohistochemistry displayed a detectable increase of amyloid plaques in brains of Pb-exposed animals. Neurobehavioral test using Morris water maze showed an impaired spatial learning ability in Pb-treated mice, but not in C57BL/6 wild type mice with the same age. In vitro studies further uncovered that Pb facilitated Aβ fibril formation. Moreover, the synchrotron X-ray fluorescent studies demonstrated a high level of Pb present in amyloid plaques in mice exposed to Pb in vivo. Taken together, these data indicate that Pb exposure with ensuing elevated Aβ level in mouse brains appears to be associated with the amyloid plaques formation. Pb apparently facilitates Aβ fibril formation and participates in deposition of amyloid plaques.
doi:10.1016/j.toxlet.2012.07.002
PMCID: PMC3461595  PMID: 22796588
Lead or Pb; beta-amyloid or Aβ; amyloid plaques; Tg-SWDI mouse; fibril formation; X-ray fluorescence or XRF; hippocampus

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