Altered energy metabolism in Alzheimer's disease

J Neurol Sci. 1996 Jul;139(1):78-82.


To evaluate the energy metabolism in Alzheimer's disease (AD), the cerebral arteriovenous differences of oxygen, glucose, lactate, pyruvate, ketone bodies and free fatty acids, and regional cerebral blood flow (rCBF) were examined in 7 patients with Alzheimer's disease (AD). The ratio of oxygen and glucose molar utilization was significantly elevated to 9.86 in AD, compared with 5.63 for 7 age matched controls. Single-photon emission computed tomography revealed that the patients had significantly decreased rCBF only in the parietotemporal region. The glucose extraction fraction and global cerebral metabolic rate of glucose were significantly decreased, whereas the global cerebral metabolic rate of oxygen was slightly decreased. However, the elevated oxygen/glucose utilization ratio is not due to the oxygenation of ketone bodies or free fatty acids, because the cerebral metabolic rates of these substrates did not alter. We concluded that the marked elevated value of the oxygen/glucose utilization ratio suggests an altered energy metabolism in AD.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Alzheimer Disease / diagnostic imaging
  • Alzheimer Disease / metabolism*
  • Alzheimer Disease / physiopathology
  • Brain / blood supply
  • Brain / diagnostic imaging
  • Brain / metabolism*
  • Energy Metabolism*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Ketone Bodies / blood
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Organ Specificity
  • Oxygen / blood
  • Reference Values
  • Regional Blood Flow
  • Tomography, Emission-Computed, Single-Photon


  • Ketone Bodies
  • Oxygen