Dr. Coleman led this live discussion on how biomarker information and basic science of AD can inform each other. He reviewed how the more common biomarkers of tau and Aß peptides relate to the major neurobiological deficits in AD—synaptic loss and dysfunction. Some forms of Aß and some specific ptau forms appear to relate mechanistically to synaptic function. It is then necessary to ask where (or how) Aß would be best measured as a biomarker. It distributes among a number of compartments, even in blood. Joe Rogers’s data on Aß binding to erythrocytes (about half of the "free" Aß) with subsequent degradation in the liver needs consideration. Other biomarkers may not be as directly related to synaptic function as are Aß and tau.
Dr. Coleman presented data on biomarkers that he has found to be useful, and stressed that they mirror similar changes in brain. Finally, why should molecules in blood reflect events in brain? Consideration was given to blood-brain communication, heritability, and Aß as a potential player in both brain and peripheral tissues.
Featured discussants: Cynthia Csernansky, Joe Rogers, Clemens Scherzer, David Surman, Anne Fagan, and Kristine Yaffe.
Paul Coleman led this Webinar on 1 June 2006. Readers are invited to submit additional comments by using our Comments form at the bottom of the page.
- Lehmann DJ, Johnston C, Smith AD. Synergy between the genes for butyrylcholinesterase K variant and apolipoprotein E4 in late-onset confirmed Alzheimer's disease. Hum Mol Genet. 1997 Oct;6(11):1933-6. PubMed.