Peripheral blood mononuclear cells as a laboratory to study dementia in the elderly

Beatrice Arosio, Claudio D'Addario, Cristina Gussago, Martina Casati, Enzo Tedone, Evelyn Ferri, Paola Nicolini, Paolo D. Rossi, Mauro Maccarrone, Daniela Mari

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The steady and dramatic increase in the incidence of Alzheimer's disease (AD) and the lack of effective treatments have stimulated the search for strategies to prevent or delay its onset and/or progression. Since the diagnosis of dementia requires a number of established features that are present when the disease is fully developed, but not always in the early stages, the need for a biological marker has proven to be urgent, in terms of both diagnosis and monitoring of AD. AD has been shown to affect peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) that are a critical component of the immune system which provide defence against infection. Although studies are continuously supplying additional data that emphasize the central role of inflammation in AD, PBMCs have not been sufficiently investigated in this context. Delineating biochemical alterations in AD blood constituents may prove valuable in identifying accessible footprints that reflect degenerative processes within the Central Nervous System (CNS). In this review, we address the role of biomarkers in AD with a focus on the notion that PBMCs may serve as a peripheral laboratory to find molecular signatures that could aid in differential diagnosis with other forms of dementia and in monitoring of disease progression.

Original languageEnglish
Article number169203
JournalBioMed Research International
Publication statusPublished - 2014

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Immunology and Microbiology(all)
  • Medicine(all)


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