Research Study Abstract

Moderate Intensity Physical Activity is Associated with CSF Biomarkers in Preclinical Alzheimer’s Disease

  • Published on Jul 2017

Background: Alzheimer’s disease (AD) pathology is characterized by the presence of amyloid (Aβ) plaques and neurofibrillary tangles. Physical activity (PA) has emerged as a possible modifier of these pathological changes associated with AD. Consequently, the aim of this study was to examine the relationship between objectively-measured PA and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) levels of Aβ42 and tau in asymptomatic late-middle-aged adults at risk for AD.

Methods: Fifty cognitively healthy late-middle-aged adults (age=63.17 years, 68.0% female) from the Wisconsin Registry for Alzheimer’s Prevention participated in this study. They wore an accelerometer (ActiGraph GT3X+) for one week to record free-living PA. Accelerometer data yielded measures of sedentariness and various intensities of PA (i.e., light, moderate, and vigorous, determined according to well-established standards). Participants also underwent lumbar puncture for collection of CSF, from which Aβ42, total tau (t-tau) and phosphorylated tau (p-tau) were immunoassayed. We additionally computed tau-to-Aβ42 ratios. Regression analyses were utilized to examine the association between sedentariness/PA and CSF biomarkers, while adjusting for age, sex, apolipoprotein ε4 status, and interval between CSF collection and accelerometer data.

Results: Sedentariness was significantly associated with reduced Aβ42 (p=.023) and increased p-tau/Aβ42 (p=.018). Furthermore, engagement in moderate-intensity PA was significantly associated with higher Aβ42 (p=.002), lower t-tau/Aβ42 (p=.001), and lower p-tau/Aβ42 (p=.002). In contrast, neither light- nor vigorous-intensity PA was significantly associated with any of the biomarkers. The relationship between moderate-intensity PA and CSF biomarkers persisted (p=.009 for Aβ42; p=.008 for t-tau/Aβ42; and p=.003 for p-tau/Aβ42) even after accounting for time spent in light- and vigorous-intensity PA categories.

Conclusions: In this cohort of late-middle-aged adults at risk for AD, sedentariness was associated with greater AD pathophysiology, while moderate-intensity PA was associated with a favorable biomarker profile. These findings are consistent with previous studies that suggest a physically active lifestyle may play a protective role against the development of AD.

Author(s)

  • Lena L. Law 1,2,3
  • Rachael N. Rol 1,2,3
  • Stephanie A. Schultz 1,2,3
  • Ryan J. Dougherty 4
  • Dorothy Farrar Edwards 1,2,5
  • Jean A. Einerson 6
  • Rebecca L. Koscik 3
  • Catherine L. Gallagher 1,2
  • Cynthia M. Carlsson 1,2
  • Barbara B. Bendlin 1,2,3
  • Henrik Zetterberg 7
  • Kaj Blennow 7
  • Sanjay Asthana 1,2
  • Mark A. Sager 1,3
  • Bruce P. Hermann 1,3
  • James H. Stein 6
  • Sterling C. Johnson 1,2,3
  • Dane B. Cook 4,8
  • Ozioma C. Okonkwo 1,2,3

Institution(s)

  • 1

    Wisconsin Alzheimer's Disease Research Center, University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health, Madison, WI, USA

  • 2

    Geriatric Research Education and Clinical Center, William S. Middleton Memorial Veterans Hospital, Madison, WI, USA

  • 3

    Wisconsin Alzheimer's Institute, University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health, Madison, WI, USA

  • 4

    University of Wisconsin School of Education, Madison, WI, USA

  • 5

    University of Wisconsin Program in Occupational Therapy, Madison, WI, USA

  • 6

    University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health, Madison, WI, USA

  • 7

    Institute of Neuroscience and Physiology, The Sahlgrenska Academy at University of Gothenburg, Mölndal, Sweden

  • 8

    Research Service, William S. Middleton Memorial Veterans Hospital, Madison, WI, USA


Journal

Alzheimers & Dementia


Categories

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