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Characterisation of lipid profiles using state-of-the-art electrospray ionization mass spectrometry (ESI-MS) to determine profiles of individuals with Alzheimer's disease and to determine the effect of these on Neuroimaging and how they are affected by Physical Activity, with the aim of identifying novel biomarkers.

Ms Samantha Gardener
Research Centre DCRC Early Diagnosis and Prevention
Partner Institution Edith Cowan University
Project Description

Alzheimer's Disease (AD) is the most common neurodegenerative disorder currently affecting several millions of people worldwide. With an ageing population, there is predicted to be a marked increase in the number of AD cases in the coming decades, making this a major socio-economic and healthcare concern.

It is proposed to perform a study of lipid profiles in over 1000 elderly people including those with AD, MCI as well as healthy controls. The study will determine how these profiles correlate with cognitive function, dietary and lifestyle factors and the results of neuropsychological tests and neuroimaging studies. This study will use data and samples collected from the Australian Imaging, Biomarkers and Lifestyle (AIBL) study of aging, which is an ongoing investigation funded by the Australian Commonwealth Scientific Industrial and Research Organisation.

This study has recruited 1112 participants in Melbourne and Perth.

Blood samples have been collected at baseline and 18 months, we are in the process of collecting at 36 months and will continue to 54 months after that, comparison of lipid profiles between those individuals that convert to cognitive decline and AD versus non converters will lead to novel biomarker discovery.

A key development in the study of lipids and neurodegenerative disease has been the advancement of technologies to determine lipid profiles and their interacting partners (lipidomics). Apart from the quantitative importance of various fatty acids and lipids, new technologies can determine the structural diversity of many important lipid species.

Lipidomics creates new and exciting opportunities to analyse samples already collected for the AIBL study.

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