Tau plasma levels in subjective cognitive decline: Results from the DELCODE study

Stephan Müller, Oliver Preische, Jens C. Göpfert, Viviana A.Carcamo Yañez, Thomas O. Joos, Henning Boecker, Emrah Düzel, Peter Falkai, Josef Priller, Katharina Buerger, Cihan Catak, Daniel Janowitz, Michael T. Heneka, Frederic Brosseron, Peter Nestor, Oliver Peters, Felix Menne, Carola G. Schipke, Anja Schneider, Annika SpottkeKlaus Fließbach, Ingo Kilimann, Stefan Teipel, Michael Wagner, Jens Wiltfang, Frank Jessen, Christoph Laske

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

30 Scopus citations


Previous studies have demonstrated increased tau plasma levels in patients with Alzheimer's disease (AD) and mild cognitive impairment (MCI) due to AD. Much less is known whether increased tau plasma levels can already be detected in the pre-MCI stage of subjective cognitive decline (SCD). In the present study we measured tau plasma levels in 111 SCD patients and 134 age- and gender-matched cognitively healthy controls participating in the DZNE (German Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases) longitudinal study on cognition and dementia (DELCODE). Tau plasma levels were measured using ultra-sensitive, single-molecule array (Simoa) technology. We found no significant different tau plasma levels in SCD (3.4 pg/ml) compared with healthy controls (3.6 pg/ml) after controlling for age, gender, and education (p = 0.137). In addition, tau plasma levels did not correlate with Aβ42 (r = 0.073; p = 0.634), tau (r = -0.179; p = 0.240), and p-tau181 (r = -0.208; p = 0.171) cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) levels in a subgroup of 45 SCD patients with available CSF. In conclusion, plasma tau is not increased in SCD patients. In addition, the lack of correlation between tau in plasma and CSF in the examined cohort suggests that tau levels are affected by different factors in both biofluids.

Original languageEnglish
Article number9529
JournalScientific Reports
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1 Dec 2017
Externally publishedYes


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