Longitudinal stability of CSF biomarkers in Alzheimer's disease.Neurosci Lett 2007; 419(1):18-22NL
Biomarker levels in cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) may serve as surrogate markers for treatment efficacy in clinical trials of disease-modifying drugs against Alzheimer's disease (AD). A prerequisite, however, is that the marker is sufficiently stable over time in individual patients. Here, we tested the stability of the three established CSF biomarkers for AD, total tau (T-tau), tau phosphorylated at threonine 181 (P-tau(181)) and the 42 amino acid isoform of beta-amyloid (Abeta42), over 6 months in a cohort of AD patients on stable treatment with acetylcholinesterase (AChE) inhibitors. Fifty-three patients completed the study, 29 men and 24 women, mean age (+/-S.D.) 76.1+/-7.9 years. Mean levels of CSF biomarkers were very stable between baseline and endpoint, with coefficients of variation (CVs) of 4.4-6.1%. Intra-individual biomarker levels at baseline and endpoint were also highly correlated with Pearson r-values above 0.95 (p<0.0001), for all three markers. We conclude that T-tau, P-tau and Abeta42 concentrations in CSF are remarkably stable over a 6-month period in individual AD patients. This suggest that these biomarkers may have a potential to identify and monitor very minor biochemical changes induced by treatment, and thus support their possible usefulness as surrogate markers in clinical trials with drug candidates with disease-modifying potential, such as secretase inhibitors, Abeta immunotherapy and tau phosphorylation inhibitors.