Cognitive Decline
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2021 ◽  
Vol 13 (1) ◽  
Tengfei Guo ◽  
Susan M. Landau ◽  
William J. Jagust ◽  

Abstract Background We recently reported that CSF phosphorylated tau (p-Tau181) relative to Aβ40 (CSF p-Tau/Aβ40 ratio) was less noisy and increased associations with Alzheimer’s disease (AD) biomarkers compared to CSF p-Tau181 alone. While elevations of CSF p-Tau/Aβ40 can occur in amyloid-β (Aβ) negative (Aβ-) individuals, the factors associated with these elevations and their role in neurodegeneration and cognitive decline are unknown. We aim to explore factors associated with elevated tau in CSF, and how these elevated tau are related to neurodegeneration and cognitive decline in the absence of Aβ positivity. Methods We examined relationships between CSF p-Tau/Aβ40, and CSF Aβ42/Aβ40, Aβ PET, and white matter hyperintensities (WMH) as well as vascular risk factors in 149 cognitively unimpaired and 52 impaired individuals who were presumably not on the Alzheimer’s disease (AD) pathway due to negative Aβ status on both CSF and PET. Subgroups had 18F-fluorodeoxyglucose (FDG) PET and adjusted hippocampal volume (aHCV), and longitudinal measures of CSF, aHCV, FDG PET, and cognition data, so we examined CSF p-Tau/Aβ40 associations with these measures as well. Results Elevated CSF p-Tau/Aβ40 was associated with older age, male sex, greater WMH, and hypertension as well as a pattern of hippocampal atrophy and temporoparietal hypometabolism characteristic of AD. Lower CSF Aβ42/Aβ40, higher WMH, and hypertension but not age, sex, Aβ PET, APOE-ε4 status, body mass index, smoking, and hyperlipidemia at baseline predicted CSF p-Tau/Aβ40 increases over approximately 5 years of follow-up. The relationship between CSF p-Tau/Aβ40 and subsequent cognitive decline was partially or fully explained by neurodegenerative measurements. Conclusions These data provide surprising clues as to the etiology and significance of tau pathology in the absence of Aβ. It seems likely that, in addition to age, both cerebrovascular disease and subthreshold levels of Aβ are related to this tau accumulation. Crucially, this phenotype of CSF tau elevation in amyloid-negative individuals share features with AD such as a pattern of metabolic decline and regional brain atrophy.

2021 ◽  
Vol 13 (1) ◽  
Qingqin S. Li ◽  
Aparna Vasanthakumar ◽  
Justin W. Davis ◽  
Kenneth B. Idler ◽  
Kwangsik Nho ◽  

Abstract Background Identifying biomarkers associated with Alzheimer’s disease (AD) progression may enable patient enrichment and improve clinical trial designs. Epigenome-wide association studies have revealed correlations between DNA methylation at cytosine-phosphate-guanine (CpG) sites and AD pathology and diagnosis. Here, we report relationships between peripheral blood DNA methylation profiles measured using Infinium® MethylationEPIC BeadChip and AD progression in participants from the Alzheimer’s Disease Neuroimaging Initiative (ADNI) cohort. Results The rate of cognitive decline from initial DNA sampling visit to subsequent visits was estimated by the slopes of the modified Preclinical Alzheimer Cognitive Composite (mPACC; mPACCdigit and mPACCtrailsB) and Clinical Dementia Rating Scale Sum of Boxes (CDR-SB) plots using robust linear regression in cognitively normal (CN) participants and patients with mild cognitive impairment (MCI), respectively. In addition, diagnosis conversion status was assessed using a dichotomized endpoint. Two CpG sites were significantly associated with the slope of mPACC in CN participants (P < 5.79 × 10−8 [Bonferroni correction threshold]); cg00386386 was associated with the slope of mPACCdigit, and cg09422696 annotated to RP11-661A12.5 was associated with the slope of CDR-SB. No significant CpG sites associated with diagnosis conversion status were identified. Genes involved in cognition and learning were enriched. A total of 19, 13, and 5 differentially methylated regions (DMRs) associated with the slopes of mPACCtrailsB, mPACCdigit, and CDR-SB, respectively, were identified by both comb-p and DMRcate algorithms; these included DMRs annotated to HOXA4. Furthermore, 5 and 19 DMRs were associated with conversion status in CN and MCI participants, respectively. The most significant DMR was annotated to the AD-associated gene PM20D1 (chr1: 205,818,956 to 205,820,014 [13 probes], Sidak-corrected P = 7.74 × 10−24), which was associated with both the slope of CDR-SB and the MCI conversion status. Conclusion Candidate CpG sites and regions in peripheral blood were identified as associated with the rate of cognitive decline in participants in the ADNI cohort. While we did not identify a single CpG site with sufficient clinical utility to be used by itself due to the observed effect size, a biosignature composed of DNA methylation changes may have utility as a prognostic biomarker for AD progression.

2021 ◽  
Vol 13 (1) ◽  
Sarah Hamburg ◽  
Daniel Bush ◽  
Andre Strydom ◽  
Carla M. Startin

Abstract Background Down syndrome (DS) is the most common genetic cause of intellectual disability (ID) worldwide. Understanding electrophysiological characteristics associated with DS provides potential mechanistic insights into ID, helping inform biomarkers and targets for intervention. Currently, electrophysiological characteristics associated with DS remain unclear due to methodological differences between studies and inadequate controls for cognitive decline as a potential cofounder. Methods Eyes-closed resting-state EEG measures (specifically delta, theta, alpha, and beta absolute and relative powers, and alpha peak amplitude, frequency and frequency variance) in occipital and frontal regions were compared between adults with DS (with no diagnosis of dementia or evidence of cognitive decline) and typically developing (TD) matched controls (n = 25 per group). Results We report an overall ‘slower’ EEG spectrum, characterised by higher delta and theta power, and lower alpha and beta power, for both regions in people with DS. Alpha activity in particular showed strong group differences, including lower power, lower peak amplitude and greater peak frequency variance in people with DS. Conclusions Such EEG ‘slowing’ has previously been associated with cognitive decline in both DS and TD populations. These findings indicate the potential existence of a universal EEG signature of cognitive impairment, regardless of origin (neurodevelopmental or neurodegenerative), warranting further exploration.

Philip W. Tipton ◽  
Nazli Bülbül ◽  
Julia Crook ◽  
Zachary Quicksall ◽  
Owen A. Ross ◽  

2021 ◽  
pp. 1-20
Yume Imahori ◽  
Davide L. Vetrano ◽  
Petter Ljungman ◽  
Chengxuan Qiu

Background: Markers of altered cardiac function might predict cognitive decline and dementia. Objective: This systematic review aims to review the literature that examines the associations of various electrocardiogram (ECG) markers with cognitive decline and dementia in middle-aged and elderly populations. Methods: We searched PubMed, Embase, and Web of Science through 1 July 2020 for literature and conducted a systematic literature review. We included studies examining the associations of ECG markers (e.g., left ventricular hypertrophy [LVH], spatial QRS-T angle, and QT prolongation) with cognitive function and dementia in adult populations regardless of study setting and design, but excluded studies examining atrial fibrillation and heart rate variability. Results: Fourteen community-based cross-sectional and longitudinal studies were identified. ECG markers were investigated in association with dementia in four prospective studies, and with cognitive decline in ten prospective studies. ECG-assessed LVH was associated with dementia in one study while five heterogeneous prospective studies yielded inconsistent associations with cognitive decline. Regarding ventricular repolarization markers, spatial QRS-T angle was associated with cognitive decline in one study while another study found no association between QT prolongation and cognitive decline. High resting heart rate was associated with both dementia and cognitive decline in one study but not associated with dementia in another study. P-wave abnormality was significantly associated with incident dementia and cognitive decline in one prospective study. Conclusion: Some ECG markers were associated with incident dementia and cognitive decline. However, limited number of heterogeneous studies did not allow us to make firm conclusions. Further studies are needed.

2021 ◽  
pp. 0271678X2110489
Florian Gueniot ◽  
Sebastien Rubin ◽  
Pauline Bougaran ◽  
Alice Abelanet ◽  
Jean Luc Morel ◽  

Blood brain barrier (BBB) disruption is a critical component of the pathophysiology of cognitive impairment of vascular etiology (VCI) and associated with Alzheimer’s disease (AD). The Wnt pathway plays a crucial role in BBB maintenance, but there is limited data on its role in cognitive pathologies. The E3 ubiquitin ligase PDZRN3 is a regulator of the Wnt pathway. In a murine model of VCI, overexpressing Pdzrn3 in endothelial cell (EC) exacerbated BBB hyperpermeability and accelerated cognitive decline. We extended these observations, in both VCI and AD models, showing that EC-specific depletion of Pdzrn3, reinforced the BBB, with a decrease in vascular permeability and a subsequent spare in cognitive decline. We found that in cerebral vessels, Pdzrn3 depletion protects against AD-induced Wnt target gene alterations and enhances endothelial tight junctional proteins. Our results provide evidence that Wnt signaling could be a molecular link regulating BBB integrity and cognitive decline under VCI and AD pathologies.

2021 ◽  
pp. 1-41
Alexandra König ◽  
Elisa Mallick ◽  
Johannes Tröger ◽  
Nicklas Linz ◽  
Radia Zeghari ◽  

2021 ◽  
Vol 13 ◽  
Emanuele Brai ◽  
Alessandro Tonacci ◽  
Victòria Brugada-Ramentol ◽  
Federica D’Andrea ◽  
Lavinia Alberi

Dementia is a common feature of several age-related brain diseases, leading to a progressive cognitive decline. Due to a growing aging rate, dementia-related disorders currently affect around 50 million people worldwide and by 2050 this number is expected to reach 150 million. Additionally to patients, these neurodegenerative pathologies have a strong impact on family members, caretakers, and other health professionals, therefore representing a public health burden that in 2020 accounted for over 1 trillion USD and is projected to nearly double in the next decade. To overcome this devastating condition, many organizations and collaborative networks sustain that only a complete understanding of dementia in its different characteristics can drive the scientific community towards the development of effective therapeutic approaches aiming at preventing its onset and halting its progression.In this work, we discuss two topics that represent fundamental resources in fighting dementia: (i) the importance of raising awareness about this condition to avoid stigma and gauging investment; and (ii) the introduction of novel screening measures to prevent and potentially revert cognitive decline. Finally, we discern how knowledge-based advocacy will help the rollout of clinical trials and the development of novel and timely pharmacological interventions.

2021 ◽  
Kazuto Tsukita ◽  
Haruhi Sakamaki‐Tsukita ◽  
Ryosuke Takahashi

2021 ◽  
Vol 13 (1) ◽  
Andrea Brioschi Guevara ◽  
Melanie Bieler ◽  
Daniele Altomare ◽  
Marcelo Berthier ◽  
Chantal Csajka ◽  

AbstractCognitive complaints in the absence of objective cognitive impairment, observed in patients with subjective cognitive decline (SCD), are common in old age. The first step to postpone cognitive decline is to use techniques known to improve cognition, i.e., cognitive enhancement techniques.We aimed to provide clinical recommendations to improve cognitive performance in cognitively unimpaired individuals, by using cognitive, mental, or physical training (CMPT), non-invasive brain stimulations (NIBS), drugs, or nutrients. We made a systematic review of CMPT studies based on the GRADE method rating the strength of evidence.CMPT have clinically relevant effects on cognitive and non-cognitive outcomes. The quality of evidence supporting the improvement of outcomes following a CMPT was high for metamemory; moderate for executive functions, attention, global cognition, and generalization in daily life; and low for objective memory, subjective memory, motivation, mood, and quality of life, as well as a transfer to other cognitive functions. Regarding specific interventions, CMPT based on repeated practice (e.g., video games or mindfulness, but not physical training) improved attention and executive functions significantly, while CMPT based on strategic learning significantly improved objective memory.We found encouraging evidence supporting the potential effect of NIBS in improving memory performance, and reducing the perception of self-perceived memory decline in SCD. Yet, the high heterogeneity of stimulation protocols in the different studies prevent the issuing of clear-cut recommendations for implementation in a clinical setting. No conclusive argument was found to recommend any of the main pharmacological cognitive enhancement drugs (“smart drugs”, acetylcholinesterase inhibitors, memantine, antidepressant) or herbal extracts (Panax ginseng, Gingko biloba, and Bacopa monnieri) in people without cognitive impairment.Altogether, this systematic review provides evidence for CMPT to improve cognition, encouraging results for NIBS although more studies are needed, while it does not support the use of drugs or nutrients.

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