CSF/serum folate gradient: physiology and determinants with special reference to dementia.Dement Geriatr Cogn Disord. 2008; 25(6):516-23.DG
Folate depletion has been implicated as a risk factor for neurodegenerative disorders. We hypothesized that transport of folate to the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) compartment could be involved in the pathophysiology of these disorders.
The CSF/serum folate gradient (R(CSF/S)) was studied in 205 subjects with suspected cognitive disorder. Its relation to clinical and biochemical indices, including the integrity of the blood-CSF barrier, were characterized.
In subjects who were diagnosed as nondemented (ND) the mean R(CSF/S)+/- SD was 2.46 +/- 0.62 versus 2.09 +/- 0.67 (p = 0.008) in the dementia subgroup with a vascular component (VaD + mixed). The ND subgroup had higher CSF folate (p = 0.001) and lower serum homocysteine values (p = 0.001) than the VaD + mixed subgroup. The folate gradient R(CSF/S) was negatively correlated with serum folate (p < 0.001, R(2) = 0.518) and to the albumin ratio, a blood-CSF barrier biomarker (beta = -0.235). The Alzheimer patients had R(CSF/S) and albumin ratios similar to the ND subjects.
The R(CSF/S) was significantly lower in the VaD + mixed dementia subgroup, suggestive of a defect in the transport of folate over the choroid plexus that seems to be characteristic of, and limited to, the VaD + mixed dementia subgroup.