Peptides and proteins in plasma and cerebrospinal fluid as biomarkers for the prediction, diagnosis, and monitoring of therapeutic efficacy of Alzheimer's disease

Biochim Biophys Acta. 2008 Oct;1782(10):549-58. doi: 10.1016/j.bbadis.2008.07.008. Epub 2008 Aug 7.


Alzheimer's disease (AD) affects millions of persons worldwide. Earlier detection and/or diagnosis of AD would permit earlier intervention, which conceivably could delay progression of this dementing disorder. In order to accomplish this goal, reliable and specific biomarkers are needed. Biomarkers are multidimensional and have the potential to aid in various facets of AD such as diagnostic prediction, assessment of disease stage, discrimination from normally cognitive controls as well as other forms of dementia, and therapeutic efficacy of AD drugs. To date, biomarker research has focused on plasma and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF), two bodily fluids believed to contain the richest source of biomarkers for AD. CSF is the fluid surrounding the central nervous system (CNS), and is the most indicative obtainable fluid of brain pathology. Blood plasma contains proteins that affect brain processes from the periphery, as well as proteins/peptides exported from the brain; this fluid would be ideal for biomarker discovery due to the ease and non-invasive process of sample collection. However, it seems reasonable that biomarker discovery will result in combinations of CSF, plasma, and other fluids such as urine, to serve the aforementioned purposes. This review focuses on proteins and peptides identified from CSF, plasma, and urine that may serve as biomarkers in AD.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Alzheimer Disease / blood
  • Alzheimer Disease / cerebrospinal fluid
  • Alzheimer Disease / diagnosis*
  • Biomarkers / analysis*
  • Biomarkers / blood
  • Biomarkers / cerebrospinal fluid
  • Blood Proteins / analysis
  • Cerebrospinal Fluid / chemistry
  • Dementia / blood
  • Dementia / cerebrospinal fluid
  • Dementia / diagnosis
  • Humans
  • Peptides / analysis*
  • Peptides / blood
  • Peptides / cerebrospinal fluid
  • Proteins / analysis*
  • Sensitivity and Specificity


  • Biomarkers
  • Blood Proteins
  • Peptides
  • Proteins