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1.  Levels of cerebrospinal fluid α-synuclein oligomers are increased in Parkinson’s disease with dementia and dementia with Lewy bodies compared to Alzheimer’s disease 
Introduction
The objective was to study whether α-synuclein oligomers are altered in the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) of patients with dementia, including Parkinson disease with dementia (PDD), dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB), and Alzheimer disease (AD), compared with age-matched controls.
Methods
In total, 247 CSF samples were assessed in this study, including 71 patients with DLB, 30 patients with PDD, 48 patients with AD, and 98 healthy age-matched controls. Both total and oligomeric α-synuclein levels were evaluated by using well-established immunoassays.
Results
The levels of α-synuclein oligomers in the CSF were increased in patients with PDD compared with the controls (P < 0.05), but not in patients with DLB compared with controls. Interestingly, the levels of α-synuclein oligomers in the CSF were also significantly higher in patients with PDD (P < 0.01) and DLB (P < 0.05) compared with patients with AD. The levels of CSF α-synuclein oligomers and the ratio of oligomeric/total-α-synuclein could distinguish DLB or PDD patients from AD patients, with areas under the curves (AUCs) of 0.64 and 0.75, respectively. In addition, total-α-synuclein alone could distinguish DLB or PDD patients from AD patients, with an AUC of 0.80.
Conclusions
The levels of α-synuclein oligomers were increased in the CSF from α-synucleinopathy patients with dementia compared with AD cases.
doi:10.1186/alzrt255
PMCID: PMC4075410  PMID: 24987465
2.  Progression of mild Alzheimer’s disease: knowledge and prediction models required for future treatment strategies 
Introduction
Knowledge of longitudinal progression in mild Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is required for the evaluation of disease-modifying therapies. Our aim was to observe the effects of long-term cholinesterase inhibitor (ChEI) therapy in mild AD patients in a routine clinical setting.
Methods
This was a prospective, open-label, non-randomized, multicenter study of ChEI treatment (donepezil, rivastigmine or galantamine) conducted during clinical practice. The 734 mild AD patients (Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE) score 20 to 26) were assessed at baseline and then semi-annually over three years. Outcome measures included the MMSE, Alzheimer’s Disease Assessment Scale-cognitive subscale (ADAS-cog), Clinician’s Interview-Based Impression of Change (CIBIC) and Instrumental Activities of Daily Living (IADL) scale.
Results
After three years of ChEI therapy, 31% (MMSE) and 33% (ADAS-cog) of the patients showed improved/unchanged cognitive ability, 33% showed improved/unchanged global performance and 14% showed improved/unchanged IADL capacity. Higher mean dose of ChEI and lower educational level were both predictors of more positive longitudinal cognitive and functional outcomes. Older participants and those with a better IADL score at baseline exhibited a slower rate of cognitive decline, whereas younger participants and those with higher cognitive status showed more preserved IADL ability over time. Gender and apolipoprotein E (APOE) genotype showed inconsistent results. Prediction models using the abovementioned scales are presented.
Conclusions
In naturalistic mild AD patients, a marked deterioration in IADL compared with cognitive and global long-term outcomes was observed, indicating the importance of functional assessments during the early stages of the disease. The participants’ time on ChEI treatment before inclusion in studies of new therapies might affect their rate of decline and thus the comparisons of changes in scores between various studies. An increased understanding of expected disease progression in different domains and potential predictors of disease progression is essential for assessment of future therapies in AD.
doi:10.1186/alzrt210
PMCID: PMC3978889  PMID: 24099236
4.  Predictors of long-term cognitive outcome in Alzheimer's disease 
Introduction
The objective of this study was to describe the longitudinal cognitive outcome in Alzheimer's disease (AD) and analyze factors that affect the outcome, including the impact of different cholinesterase inhibitors (ChEI).
Methods
In an open, three-year, nonrandomized, prospective, multicenter study, 843 patients were treated with donepezil, rivastigmine, or galantamine in a routine clinical setting. At baseline and every six months, patients were assessed using several rating scales, including the Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE) and the Alzheimer's Disease Assessment Scale-cognitive subscale (ADAS-cog) and the dose of ChEI was recorded. Sociodemographic and clinical characteristics were investigated. The relationships of these predictors with longitudinal cognitive ability were analyzed using mixed-effects models.
Results
Slower long-term cognitive decline was associated with a higher cognitive ability at baseline or a lower level of education. The improvement in cognitive response after six months of ChEI therapy and a more positive longitudinal outcome were related to a higher mean dose of ChEI, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID)/acetylsalicylic acid usage, male gender, older age, and absence of the apolipoprotein E (APOE) ε4 allele. More severe cognitive impairment at baseline also predicted an improved response to ChEI treatment after six months. The type of ChEI agent did not influence the short-term response or the long-term outcome.
Conclusions
In this three-year AD study performed in a routine clinical practice, the response to ChEI treatment and longitudinal cognitive outcome were better in males, older individuals, non-carriers of the APOE ε4 allele, patients treated with NSAIDs/acetylsalicylic acid, and those receiving a higher dose of ChEI, regardless of the drug agent.
doi:10.1186/alzrt85
PMCID: PMC3226278  PMID: 21774798
5.  A Quick Test of cognitive speed is sensitive in detecting early treatment response in Alzheimer's disease 
Introduction
There is a great need for quick tests that identify treatment response in Alzheimer's disease (AD) to determine who benefits from the treatment. In this study, A Quick Test of cognitive speed (AQT) was compared with the mini-mental state examination (MMSE) in the evaluation of treatment outcome in AD.
Methods
75 patients with mild to moderate AD at a memory clinic were assessed with AQT and the MMSE at a pretreatment visit, at baseline and after 8 weeks of treatment with cholinesterase inhibitors (ChEI) initiated at baseline. Changes in the mean test scores before and after treatment were compared, as well as the number of treatment responders detected by each test, according to a reliable change index (RCI).
Results
After 8 weeks of treatment, the AQT improvement, expressed as a percentage, was significantly greater than that of the MMSE (P = 0.026). According to the RCI, the cut-offs to define a responder were ≥16 seconds improvement on AQT and ≥3 points on the MMSE after 8 weeks. With these cut-offs, both tests falsely classified ≤5% as responders during the pretreatment period. After 8 weeks of treatment, AQT detected significantly more responders than the MMSE (34% compared with 17%; P = 0.024). After 6 months of treatment, the 8-week AQT responders still showed a significantly better treatment response than the AQT nonresponders (22.3 seconds in mean difference; P < 0.001).
Conclusions
AQT detects twice as many treatment responders as the MMSE. It seems that AQT can, already after 8 weeks, identify the AD patients who will continue to benefit from ChEI treatment.
doi:10.1186/alzrt53
PMCID: PMC2983438  PMID: 20950460
6.  Alterations of matrix metalloproteinases in the healthy elderly with increased risk of prodromal Alzheimer's disease 
Introduction
Matrix metalloproteinases (MMP) are believed to be involved in the pathologic processes behind Alzheimer's disease (AD). In this study, we aimed to examine the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) levels of MMPs and tissue inhibitors of metalloproteinase-1 (TIMP-1) in individuals with AD dementia and cognitively healthy elderly individuals, and to investigate their relationship with established CSF biomarkers for Alzheimer's disease.
Methods
CSF was collected from 38 individuals with AD dementia and 34 cognitively healthy elderly individuals. The CSF was analyzed for MMP-1, MMP-3, MMP-9, TIMP-1, β-amyloid1-42 (Aβ42), total tau protein (T-tau) and phosphorylated tau protein (P-tau). MMP/TIMP-1 ratios were calculated. APOE genotype was determined for the participants.
Results
AD patients had higher MMP-9/TIMP-1 ratios and lower TIMP-1 levels compared to cognitively healthy individuals. In AD patients, the MMP-9/TIMP-1 ratio correlated with CSF T-tau, a marker of neurodegeneration. Interestingly, the cognitively healthy individuals with risk markers for future AD, i.e. AD-supportive CSF biomarker levels of T-tau, P-tau and Aβ42 or the presence of the APOE ε4 allele, had higher CSF MMP-3 and MMP-9 levels and higher CSF MMP-3/TIMP-1 ratios compared to the healthy individuals without risk markers. The CSF levels of MMP-3 and -9 in the control group also correlated with the CSF T-tau and P-tau levels.
Conclusions
This study indicates that MMP-3 and MMP-9 might be involved in early pathogenesis of AD and that MMPs could be associated with neuronal degeneration and formation of neurofibrillary tangles even prior to development of overt cognitive dysfunction.
doi:10.1186/alzrt44
PMCID: PMC2919700  PMID: 20576109

Results 1-6 (6)