Quantitative detection of amyloid-β peptides by mass spectrometry: state of the art and clinical applications

Clin Chem Lab Med. 2015 Sep 1;53(10):1483-93. doi: 10.1515/cclm-2014-1048.


Alzheimer's disease (AD) is the most common form of dementia in humans, and a major public health concern with 35 million of patients worldwide. Cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) biomarkers being early diagnostic indicators of AD, it is essential to use the most efficient analytical methods to detect and quantify them accurately. These biomarkers, and more specifically amyloid-β (Aβ) peptides, are measured in routine clinical practice using immunoassays. However, there are several limits to this immunodetection in terms of specificity and multiplexing of the multiple isoforms of the Aβ peptides. To overcome these issues, the quantification of these analytes by mass spectrometry (MS) represents an interesting alternative, and several assays have been described over the past years. This article reviews the different Aβ peptides quantitative MS-based approaches published so far, compares their pre-analytical phase, and the different quantitative strategies implemented that might be suitable for clinical applications.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Alzheimer Disease / cerebrospinal fluid*
  • Alzheimer Disease / diagnosis
  • Amyloid beta-Peptides / analysis
  • Amyloid beta-Peptides / cerebrospinal fluid*
  • Amyloid beta-Peptides / chemistry
  • Biomarkers / cerebrospinal fluid
  • Evaluation Studies as Topic
  • Humans
  • Immunoassay / methods
  • Mass Spectrometry / methods*
  • Mass Spectrometry / trends


  • Amyloid beta-Peptides
  • Biomarkers