Post-translational modifications in Alzheimer's disease and the potential for new biomarkers

J Alzheimers Dis. 2014;41(2):345-64. doi: 10.3233/JAD-132312.


The ability to detect and diagnose Alzheimer's disease (AD) early is an ever pressing issue, and the development of markers of disease progression that are able to distinguish AD patients from normal aging and patients with alternative forms of dementia, is at the center of the issue. Protein markers of disease, or biomarkers, can be used not only to monitor the progression of AD, but also allow identification of patients suitable for potential therapy, and the response to therapy to be monitored. Cerebrospinal fluid protein biomarkers are important in this early AD diagnosis, and three such biomarkers have been extensively studied and are reviewed here. In addition, post translational protein modifications of proteins important in AD pathology are also discussed. If additional biomarkers can be identified and thoroughly understood, potential therapeutic agents can be better designed, and the effects of therapeutic intervention on disease progression can be monitored.

Keywords: Amyloid-β; biomarkers; cerebrospinal fluid; phosphorylation; post-translational modifications; tau.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Alzheimer Disease / genetics
  • Alzheimer Disease / metabolism*
  • Amyloid beta-Peptides / metabolism
  • Animals
  • Biomarkers / metabolism
  • Clusterin / metabolism
  • Humans
  • Protein Processing, Post-Translational*
  • tau Proteins / metabolism


  • Amyloid beta-Peptides
  • Biomarkers
  • Clusterin
  • tau Proteins