ABC  Vol.2 No.2 , May 2012
Recent progress and concerns in dementia: Distinguishing Alzheimer's disease and dementia with Lewy bodies via biochemical markers in the cerebrospinal fluid
Author(s) Peizhong Mao*
Dementia is mainly a neurodegenerative disorder involved in several systems, including central nervous system, endocrinology/metabolism system and circulatory system. Alzheimer’s disease (AD) and dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB) are the most common forms of the dementia, accounting for 60% - 80% and 10% - 20% of all cases, respectively. DLB is defined by widespread neocortical, limbic and brainstem Lewy bodies but frequently accompanied by variable levels of AD pathology. This pathological and clinical overlap makes their differential diagnosis complicated. Recent advances in the identification of disease bio-markers now make it possible to detect and distinguish their pathology in the early or preclinical stage of the diseases, even in cognitively normal individuals. In addition to the key biomarkers (amyloid β or Aβ, tau and α-synuclein), neurotrophins such as cocaine- and amphetamine-regulated transcript (CART) have also drawn attention due to their expressions and functions. This article summarizes the progress in the definition, pathology and diagnosis of dementia, with a focus on potential biochemical markers in the cere-brospinal fluid (CSF) in the differential diagnosis of the main forms of dementia. To prediction or early diagnosis of dementia, the role of specific and sensitive CSF biomarkers seems to be crucial in a routine clinical setting. The concerns and challenges in the biomarker field are also discussed.

Cite this paper
Mao, P. (2012) Recent progress and concerns in dementia: Distinguishing Alzheimer's disease and dementia with Lewy bodies via biochemical markers in the cerebrospinal fluid. Advances in Biological Chemistry, 2, 176-190. doi: 10.4236/abc.2012.22022.
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