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Dement Geriatr Cogn Dis Extra. 2016 Dec 9;6(3):559-567. doi: 10.1159/000450601. eCollection 2016 Sep-Dec.

Brain-Derived Neurotrophic Factor Serum Levels and Hippocampal Volume in Mild Cognitive Impairment and Dementia due to Alzheimer Disease.

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Dementia Clinic, Neurology Service, Porto Alegre, Brazil; Postgraduate Program in Medical Sciences, School of Medicine, Porto Alegre, Brazil.
Radiology Service, Hospital de ClĂ­nicas de Porto Alegre (HCPA), Porto Alegre, Brazil.
Bipolar Disorder Program, Laboratory of Molecular Psychiatry, Porto Alegre, Brazil.
Dementia Clinic, Neurology Service, Porto Alegre, Brazil.
Dementia Clinic, Neurology Service, Porto Alegre, Brazil; Internal Medicine Department, School of Medicine, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul (UFRGS), Porto Alegre, Brazil.



Hippocampal atrophy is a recognized biomarker of Alzheimer disease (AD) pathology. Serum brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) reduction has been associated with neurodegeneration. We aimed to evaluate BDNF serum levels and hippocampal volume in clinical AD (dementia and mild cognitive impairment [MCI]).


Participants were 10 patients with MCI and 13 with dementia due to AD as well as 10 healthy controls. BDNF serum levels were determined by ELISA and volumetric measures with NeuroQuant®.


MCI and dementia patients presented lower BDNF serum levels than healthy participants; dementia patients presented a smaller hippocampal volume than MCI patients and healthy participants.


The findings support that the decrease in BDNF might start before the establishment of neuronal injury expressed by the hippocampal reduction.


Alzheimer disease; Blood biomarker; Brain atrophy; Hippocampus; Mild cognitive impairment

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