The Alzheimer's disease (AD) related amyloid precursor protein (APP) is stored, cleaved and released similarly from neurons and from platelets. We have reported that the proportion of 120-130 to 110 kDa carboxyl-cleaved APP present in the platelets of AD patients is significantly lower than that of platelets of age-matched controls. This reduced APP isoform ratio, not seen in several other disease groups, is further reduced as the severity of AD increases. Since the neuropathology of AD is believed to begin many years before the onset of cognitive loss, we have also compared platelet APP ratios of four pre-symptomatic young adults carrying a presenilin-1 mutation to seven siblings homozygous for the normal PS-1 gene in an effort to determine whether reduced APP ratios are present before apparent cognitive loss in familial AD. Decreased platelet APP ratios were not seen in any of these subjects at this time. We will continue to monitor these subjects as they near the mean age of AD onset in these families. As the magnitude of the APP ratio reduction is proportional to the severity of cognitive loss in sporadic AD, these cognitively normal incipient AD subjects would not be expected to present significant reductions in this AD severity index at this time. Alternatively, the absence of platelet APP ratio reductions may result from a failure of platelets from familial PS-1 AD subjects to manifest altered APPs, as has been reported for PS-2 AD subjects, unlike those of sporadic AD patients. Continued monitoring of cognitive status in our sub-set of controls with AD-like low APP ratios may yet validate the ability of this assay to detect incipient sporadic AD.
- Alzheimer amyloid precursor protein (APP)
- Presenilin 1 (PS1)
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Clinical Neurology