Biomarkers Consortium - Use of Targeted Multiplex Proteomic Strategies to Identify Plasma-Based Biomarkers in Alzheimer’s Disease

The lack of tools for early diagnosis and disease progression in Alzheimer’s disease (AD) continues to be a major hurdle in AD drug development. The identification and validation of cost-effective, non-invasive tools to identify AD during early disease stages and to monitor treatment effects in mild-moderate AD patients could revolutionize current clinical trial practice. Early treatment would also ensure intervention occurs prior to irreversible neuropathology. The Biomarkers Consortium’s Targeted Plasma-Based Biomarkers in Alzheimer’s Disease (AD), completed in Q3Y12, was the first part of a multi-phased effort utilizing samples from the Alzheimer’s Disease Neuroimaging Initiative (ADNI) to validate multiplex panels in both plasma and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF), for the identification of viable plasma-based biomarkers of AD, for diagnosis and disease progression.


  • To utilize a new multiplex immunoassay panel as a tool to diagnose and monitor disease progression in the ADNI cohort using baseline plasma samples.
  • The ultimate goal would be to qualify the multiplexed panel for use in clinical trials (this would not be done via this project but at later stages).

Results & Accomplishments

Results confirm independent studies reporting increased levels of NT-proBNP in AD. MCI subjects that progressed to dementia within a 48 month follow-up period showed decreased levels of ApoE in comparison to MCI subjects that had not yet progressed. A biochemical phenotype is associated with the ApoE genotype.

Scientific Publications

Plasma Biomarkers Associated With the Apolipoprotein E Genotype and Alzheimer Disease. Soares, H. D., Potter, W. D., Pickering, E., Kuhn, M., Immermann, F. W., Shera, D. M., Ferm, M., Dean, R. A., Simon, A. J., Swenson, F., Siuciak, J. A., Kaplow, J., Thambisetty, M., Zagouras, P., Koroshetz, W. J., Wan, H. I., Trojanowski, J. Q., & Shaw, L. M. Archives of Neurology. 2012; 69(10): 1310-1317.


NIH Office of the Director (OD)
University of Pennsylvania


Wesley Horton, M.S., Scientific Project Manager, Neuroscience,