Soluble TREM1 concentrations are increased and positively correlated with total tau levels in the plasma of patients with Alzheimer’s disease

Abstract

Background/aims

Recently, we showed that triggering receptor expressed on myeloid cells 1 (TREM1) was involved in the pathogenesis of Alzheimer’s disease (AD) since it modulated microglial phagocytic functions and thus affected amyloid-β clearance in the brain. Interestingly, a soluble form of TREM1 (sTREM1) can be detected in the plasma of human. To date, whether sTREM1 concentrations were altered in the plasma under AD context remained unclear.

Methods

In this study, we compared the plasma concentrations of sTREM1 between 110 AD patients and 128 age- and gender-matched controls. Meanwhile, the relationship of sTREM1 concentrations with total tau levels in the plasma of AD patients was also assessed.

Results

We revealed that the concentrations of sTREM1 were significantly increased in AD patients. Meanwhile, the sTREM1 concentrations were gradually increased during disease progression. More importantly, we showed that the sTREM1 concentrations were positively correlated with the levels of total tau in the plasma of AD patients (r = 0.61, P < 0.001). The subsequent subgroup analysis indicated that this correlation was more pronounced in patients with severe dementia (Mini-Mental State Exam score < 10, r = 0.81, P < 0.01).

Conclusion

These findings indicate a potential association between sTREM1 and tau pathology, and further confirm an involvement of this immune receptor in AD pathogenesis.

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Acknowledgements

This work was supported by National Natural Science Foundation of China (81501092), Natural Science Foundation of Jiangsu Province (BK20150091), “Six Talent Summit” Foundation of Jiangsu Province (2016-WSN-180), Youth Medical Talent Program of Jiangsu Province (QNRC2016068), Medical Innovation Team of Jiangsu Province (CXTDA2017030), and Nanjing Medical Science and Technology Development Foundation for Distinguished Young Scholars (JQX17008).

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Correspondence to Teng Jiang or Ying-Dong Zhang.

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All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of Qingdao Municipal Hospital and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.

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Jiang, T., Gong, P., Tan, M. et al. Soluble TREM1 concentrations are increased and positively correlated with total tau levels in the plasma of patients with Alzheimer’s disease. Aging Clin Exp Res 31, 1801–1805 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1007/s40520-019-01122-9

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Keywords

  • Alzheimer’s disease
  • sTREM1
  • Tau
  • Plasma
  • Biomarker