Effect of a cognitive training program on the platelet app ratio in patients with alzheimer’s disease

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In patients with Alzheimer’s disease (AD), synaptic plasticity seems to be involved in cognitive improvement induced by cognitive training. The platelet amyloid precursor protein (APP) ratio (APPr), i.e., the ratio between two APP isoforms, may be a useful peripheral biomarker to investigate synaptic plasticity pathways. This study evaluates the changes in neuropsychological/cognitive performance and APPr induced by cognitive training in AD patients participating in the “My Mind Project”. Neuropsychological/cognitive variables and APPr were evaluated in the trained group (n = 28) before a two-month experimental protocol, immediately after its termination at follow-up 1 (FU1), after 6 months at follow-up 2 (FU2), and after 24 months at follow-up 3 (FU3). The control group (n = 31) received general psychoeducational training for two months. Some memory and attention parameters were significantly improved in trained vs. control patients at FU1 and FU2 compared to baseline (∆ values). At FU3, APPr and Mini Mental State Examination (MMSE) scores decreased in trained patients. ∆ APPr correlated significantly with the ∆ scores of (i) MMSE at FU1, (ii) the prose memory test at FU2, and (iii) Instrumental Activities of Daily Living (IADL), the semantic word fluency test, Clinical Dementia Rating (CDR), and the attentive matrices test at FU3. Our data demonstrate that the platelet APPr correlates with key clinical variables, thereby proving that it may be a reliable biomarker of brain function in AD patients.

Original languageEnglish
Article number5110
Pages (from-to)1-12
Number of pages12
JournalInternational Journal of Molecular Sciences
Issue number14
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2 2020


  • Alzheimer’s disease
  • APP
  • Biomarkers
  • Cognitive training
  • Platelets
  • Synaptic plasticity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Catalysis
  • Molecular Biology
  • Spectroscopy
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Organic Chemistry
  • Inorganic Chemistry


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