Alzheimer’s Biomarker Changes 20 Years Before Diagnosis

A 20-year study tracked biomarker changes in adults progressing from normal cognition to sporadic Alzheimer’s disease (AD), using cerebral spinal fluid (CSF) analysis, cognitive assessments, and brain imaging. Changes in levels of Aβ42, p-tau181, and NfL were observed years before clinical symptoms appeared, with accelerated changes followed by a slowing of progression up to diagnosis. The study, led by Jianping Jia, MD, PhD, was published in The New England Journal of Medicine, emphasizing the importance of understanding the timing of physiological events for prevention and treatment. The study’s findings, while limited to individuals of Han Chinese ancestry, have implications for diverse populations.

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