Email updates

Keep up to date with the latest news and content from Alzheimer's Research & Therapy and BioMed Central.

Open Access Research

Plasma lipoprotein-associated phospholipase A2 activity in Alzheimer's disease, amnestic mild cognitive impairment, and cognitively healthy elderly subjects: a cross-sectional study

Julie E Davidson12*, Andrew Lockhart3, Leslie Amos4, Heide A Stirnadel-Farrant1, Vincent Mooser5, Marc Sollberger2, Axel Regeniter6, Andreas U Monsch2 and Michael C Irizarry7

Author Affiliations

1 Worldwide Epidemiology, GlaxoSmithKline R&D, 1-3 Iron Bridge Road, Stockley Park, UB11 1BT, UK

2 Memory Clinic, Department of Geriatrics, Basel University Hospital, Schanzenstrasse 55, 4031 Basel, Switzerland

3 R&D China, GlaxoSmithKline, Addenbrooke's Centre for Clinical Investigation, Addenbrooke's Hospital, Hills Road, Cambridge, CB2 2GG, UK

4 Genetics, GlaxoSmithKline R&D, 5 Moore Drive, Research Triangle Park, NC 27709, USA

5 Genetics, GlaxoSmithKline R&D, 709 Swedeland Road, King of Prussia, PA 19406, USA

6 Laboratory Medicine, Basel University Hospital, Basel, Switzerland

7 Worldwide Epidemiology, GlaxoSmithKline R&D, 5 Moore Drive, Research Triangle Park, NC 27709, USA

For all author emails, please log on.

Alzheimer's Research & Therapy 2012, 4:51  doi:10.1186/alzrt154

Published: 7 December 2012

Abstract

Introduction

Lipoprotein-associated phospholipase A2 (Lp-PLA2) is a circulating enzyme with pro-inflammatory and oxidative activities associated with cardiovascular disease and ischemic stroke. While high plasma Lp-PLA2 activity was reported as a risk factor for dementia in the Rotterdam study, no association between Lp-PLA2 mass and dementia or Alzheimer's disease (AD) was detected in the Framingham study. The objectives of the current study were to explore the relationship of plasma Lp-PLA2 activity with cognitive diagnoses (AD, amnestic mild cognitive impairment (aMCI), and cognitively healthy subjects), cardiovascular markers, cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) markers of AD, and apolipoprotein E (APOE) genotype.

Methods

Subjects with mild AD (n = 78) and aMCI (n = 59) were recruited from the Memory Clinic, University Hospital, Basel, Switzerland; cognitively healthy subjects (n = 66) were recruited from the community. Subjects underwent standardised medical, neurological, neuropsychological, imaging, genetic, blood and CSF evaluation. Differences in Lp-PLA2 activity between the cognitive diagnosis groups were tested with ANOVA and in multiple linear regression models with adjustment for covariates. Associations between Lp-PLA2 and markers of cardiovascular disease and AD were explored with Spearman's correlation coefficients.

Results

There was no significant difference in plasma Lp-PLA2 activity between AD (197.1 (standard deviation, SD 38.4) nmol/min/ml) and controls (195.4 (SD 41.9)). Gender, statin use and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL) were independently associated with Lp-PLA2 activity in multiple regression models. Lp-PLA2 activity was correlated with LDL and inversely correlated with high-density lipoprotein (HDL). AD subjects with APOE-ε4 had higher Lp-PLA2 activity (207.9 (SD 41.2)) than AD subjects lacking APOE-ε4 (181.6 (SD 26.0), P = 0.003) although this was attenuated by adjustment for LDL (P = 0.09). No strong correlations were detected for Lp-PLA2 activity and CSF markers of AD.

Conclusion

Plasma Lp-PLA2 was not associated with a diagnosis of AD or aMCI in this cross-sectional study. The main clinical correlates of Lp-PLA2 activity in AD, aMCI and cognitively healthy subjects were variables associated with lipid metabolism.