Late-onset Alzheimer's disease is associated with inherent changes in bioenergetics profiles

Sci Rep. 2017 Oct 25;7(1):14038. doi: 10.1038/s41598-017-14420-x.


Body-wide changes in bioenergetics, i.e., energy metabolism, occur in normal aging and disturbed bioenergetics may be an important contributing mechanism underlying late-onset Alzheimer's disease (LOAD). We investigated the bioenergetic profiles of fibroblasts from LOAD patients and healthy controls, as a function of age and disease. LOAD cells exhibited an impaired mitochondrial metabolic potential and an abnormal redox potential, associated with reduced nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide metabolism and altered citric acid cycle activity, but not with disease-specific changes in mitochondrial mass, production of reactive oxygen species, transmembrane instability, or DNA deletions. LOAD fibroblasts demonstrated a shift in energy production to glycolysis, despite an inability to increase glucose uptake in response to IGF-1. The increase of glycolysis and the abnormal mitochondrial metabolic potential in LOAD appeared to be inherent, as they were disease- and not age-specific. Our findings support the hypothesis that impairment in multiple interacting components of bioenergetic metabolism may be a key mechanism contributing to the risk and pathophysiology of LOAD.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Age Factors
  • Alzheimer Disease / metabolism*
  • Energy Metabolism*
  • Fibroblasts
  • Glycolysis
  • Humans
  • Mitochondria / metabolism
  • Oxidation-Reduction
  • Reactive Oxygen Species / metabolism


  • Reactive Oxygen Species