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Plasma amyloid and tau as dementia biomarkers in Down syndrome: Systematic review and meta-analyses.

Falah Alhajraf, Deborah Ness, Abdul Hye, Sciprofile linkAndre Strydom
Published: 11 September 2019
 by  Wiley
Developmental Neurobiology , Volume 79, pp 684-698; doi:10.1002/dneu.22715

Abstract: Individuals with Down syndrome (DS) are at high risk of developing Alzheimer's disease (AD). Discovering reliable biomarkers which could facilitate early AD diagnosis and be used to predict/monitor disease course would be extremely valuable. To examine if analytes in blood related to amyloid plaques may constitute such biomarkers, we conducted meta-analyses of studies comparing plasma amyloid beta (Aβ) levels between DS individuals and controls, and between DS individuals with and without dementia. PubMed, Embase, and Google Scholar were searched for studies investigating the relationship between Aβ plasma concentrations and dementia in DS and 10 studies collectively comprising >1,600 adults, including >1,400 individuals with DS, were included. RevMan 5.3 was used to perform meta-analyses. Meta-analyses showed higher plasma Aβ40 (SMD = 1.79, 95% CI [1.14, 2.44], Z = 5.40, p < .00001) and plasma Aβ42 levels (SMD = 1.41, 95% CI [1.15, 1.68], Z = 10.46, p < .00001) in DS individuals than controls, and revealed that DS individuals with dementia had higher plasma Aβ40 levels (SMD = 0.23, 95% CI [0.05, 0.41], Z = 2.54, p = .01) and lower Aβ42 /Aβ40 ratios (SMD = -0.33, 95% CI [-0.63, -0.03], Z = 2.15, p = .03) than DS individuals without dementia. Our results indicate that plasma Aβ40 levels may constitute a promising biomarker for predicting dementia status in individuals with DS. Further investigations using new ultra-sensitive assays are required to obtain more reliable results and to investigate to what extent these results may be generalizable beyond the DS population.
Keywords: Biomarkers / dementia / Alzheimer's disease / Down syndrome / plasma/blood amyloid/Aβ

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