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Title: Increased plasma brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) as a potential biomarker for and compensatory mechanism in mild cognitive impairment: A case-control study
Authors: Ng, Ted Kheng Siang 
Coughlan, Christina
Heyn, Patricia C.
Tagawa, Alex
Carollo, James J.
Kua, Ee Heok 
Mahendran, Rathi 
Keywords: BDNF
cerebral palsy
discriminative accuracy
mild cognitive impairment
Issue Date: 4-Oct-2021
Publisher: Impact Journals LLC
Citation: Ng, Ted Kheng Siang, Coughlan, Christina, Heyn, Patricia C., Tagawa, Alex, Carollo, James J., Kua, Ee Heok, Mahendran, Rathi (2021-10-04). Increased plasma brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) as a potential biomarker for and compensatory mechanism in mild cognitive impairment: A case-control study. Aging 13 (19) : 22666-22689. ScholarBank@NUS Repository.
Rights: Attribution 4.0 International
Abstract: Background: Previous meta-analyses examining the continuum of Alzheimer’s disease (AD) concluded significantly decreased peripheral brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) in AD. However, across different meta-analyses, there remain inconsistent findings on peripheral BDNF levels in individuals with mild cognitive impairment (MCI). This issue has been attributed to the highly heterogenous clinical and laboratory factors. Thus, BDNF’s level, discriminative accuracy for identifying all-cause MCI and its subtypes, and its associations with other biomarkers and neurocognitive domains, remain largely unknown. Methods: To address this heterogeneity, we compared a healthy control cohort (n=56, 45 female) to an MCI cohort (n=40, 28 female), to determine whether plasma BDNF, hs-CRP, and DHEA-S can differentiate healthy from MCI individuals, including two MCI subtypes (amnestic [aMCI] and non-amnestic [non-aMCI]). The associations between BDNF with other biomarkers and neurocognitive tests were examined. Adults with cerebral palsy were included as sensitivity analyses. Results: Compared to healthy controls, BDNF was significantly higher in all-cause MCI, aMCI, and non-aMCI. Furthermore, BDNF had good (AUC=0.84, 95% CI=0.74 to 0.95, p<0.001) and excellent discriminative accuracies (AUC=0.92, 95% CI=0.84 to 1.00, p<0.001) for all-cause MCI and non-amnestic MCI, respectively. BDNF was significantly and positively associated with plasma hs-CRP (?=0.26, 95% CI=0.02 to 0.50, p=0.038), despite attenuated association upon controlling for BMI (?=0.15, 95% CI=-0.08 to 0.38, p=0.186). Multiple inverse associations between BDNF and detailed neurocognitive tests were also detected. Conclusions: These findings suggest BDNF is increased as a compensatory mechanism in preclinical dementia, supporting the neurotrophic and partially the inflammatory hypotheses of cognitive impairment. © 2021 Ng et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited
Source Title: Aging
ISSN: 1945-4589
DOI: 10.18632/aging.203598
Rights: Attribution 4.0 International
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