Alzheimer's Disease vs Control: tau-p217 (CSF)


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A large number of studies over the past 20 years have quantified phosphorylated tau protein in the cerebrospinal fluid of people with Alzheimer’s disease. While the majority of assays have used antibodies targeting tau phosphorylated at threonine 181 (tau-p181), recently-developed assays target tau phosphorylated at threonine 217 (tau-p217). In a metta-analysis of two studies, levels of CSF tau-p217 in individuals with Alzheimer's disease were more than 10 times those of control subjects (effect size = 10.998, p <0.0001). Tau-p217—in CSF or plasma—has been reported to discriminate Alzheimer’s disease from other dementias better than does tau-p181 (10 Apr 2020  news and 29 Jul 2020 news).

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How to interpret a forest plot: Each individual effect size (ES) is a ratio of the mean biomarker level in one condition over the mean level in another condition. An ES equal to 1 means that the two conditions had identical mean values. An ES > 1 indicates higher levels in the first condition, whereas an ES < 1 indicates lower levels in the first condition. The overall ES, indicated by a black diamond, is a weighted average of the individual effect sizes. The weight of each data point was determined by the inverse of the variance and is reflected in the size of each square. The width of the overall ES diamond is determined by the 95 percent confidence interval. Data out of range of the scale, including ES and confidence intervals, are indicated by an arrowhead at the edge of the plot, when applicable. 

Version 3.0, July 2021.