J Korean Geriatr Psychiatry.  2012 Jun;16(1):17-23.

Biochemical Biomarkers for Alzheimer's Disease in Cerebrospinal Fluid and Peripheral Blood

  • 1Department of Psychiatry, Pusan National University Hospital, Busan, Korea.
  • 2Department of Psychiatry, Yonsei University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea. kimeosu@gmail.com
  • 3Institute of Behavioral Sciences in Medicine, Yonsei University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.


The diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease (AD) is still obscure even to specialists. To improve the diagnostic accuracy, to find at-risk people as early as possible, to predict the efficacy or adverse reactions of pharmacotherapy on an individual basis, to attain more reliable results of clinical trials by recruiting better defined participants, to prove the disease-modifying ability of new candidate drugs, to establish prognosis-based therapeutic plans, and to do more, is now increasing the need for biomarkers for AD. Among AD-related biochemical markers, cerebrospinal beta-amyloid and tau have been paid the most attention since they are materials directly interfacing the brain interstitium and can be obtained through the lumbar puncture. Level of beta-amyloid is reduced whereas tau is increased in cerebrospinal fluid of AD patients relative to cognitively normal elderly people. Remarkably, such information has been found to help predict AD conversion of mild cognitive impairment. Despite inconsistent findings from previous studies, plasma beta-amyloid is thought to be increased before the disease onset, but show decreasing change as the disease progress. Regarding other peripheral biochemical markers, omics tools are being widely used not only to find useful biomarkers but also to generate novel hypotheses for AD pathogenesis and to lead new personalized future medicine.


Alzheimer's disease; Biomarker; Beta-amyloid; Tau; Omics; Plasma
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