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Prospective Longitudinal Evaluation of Cytokines in mild cognitive impairment due to AD and Lewy Body Disease

Lookup NU author(s): Professor Alan ThomasORCiD, Dr Calum Hamilton, Dr Paul Donaghy, Dr Carmen Martin-RuizORCiD, Dr Christopher Morris, Nicola Barnett, Kirsty OlsenORCiD, Professor John-Paul TaylorORCiD, Professor John O'Brien



This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (CC BY 4.0).


Abstract Objectives We conducted a prospective longitudinal study of plasma cytokines during the Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI) stage of Lewy body disease and Alzheimer’s disease, hypothesising that cytokine levels would decrease over time and that this would be correlated with decline in cognition. Methods Older (≥60) people with MCI were recruited from memory services in healthcare trusts in North East England, UK. MCI was diagnosed as due to Alzheimer’s disease (MCI-AD) or Lewy body disease (MCI-LB). Baseline and repeat annual clinical and cognitive assessments were undertaken and plasma samples were obtained at the same time. Cytokine assays were performed on all samples using the Meso Scale Discovery V-Plex Plus Proinflammatory Panel 1, which included IFN-gamma, IL-1beta, IL-2, IL-4, IL-6, IL‑8, IL-10, IL-12p70, IL-13 and TNF-alpha. Results Fifty-six patients (21 MCI-AD, 35 MCI-LB) completed prospective evaluations and provided samples up to three years after baseline. Six cytokines (IFN-g, IL-1beta, IL-2, IL-4, IL-6 and IL-10) showed highly significant (P<0.002) decreases over time. AD and LB did not differ in rate of decrease nor were there any effects related to age or general morbidity. Decrease in five of these cytokines (IFN-g, IL-1beta, IL-2, IL-4, and IL-10) was highly correlated with decrease in cognition (p<0.003). Conclusions Peripheral inflammation decreased in both disease groups during MCI suggesting this may be a therapeutic window for future anti-inflammatory agents.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Thomas AJ, Hamilton CA, Donaghy PC, Martin-Ruiz C, Morris CM, Barnett N, Olsen K, Taylor JP, O'Brien JT

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: International Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry

Year: 2020

Volume: 35

Issue: 10

Pages: 1250-1259

Print publication date: 01/10/2020

Online publication date: 19/06/2020

Acceptance date: 13/06/2020

Date deposited: 16/06/2020

ISSN (electronic): 1099-1166

Publisher: Wiley


DOI: 10.1002/gps.5365


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Funder referenceFunder name
Alzheimer's Research UK
ARUK-PG2015-13Alzheimer`s Research UK
Newcastle NIHR Biomedical Research Centre