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International Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease
Volume 2010, Article ID 536538, 17 pages
Review Article

Cerebrospinal Fluid Biomarkers for Dementia with Lewy Bodies

Institute for Ageing and Health, Campus for Ageing and Vitality, Newcastle University, Westgate Road, Newcastle upon Tyne, Newcastle NE5 5PL, UK

Received 15 April 2010; Revised 6 July 2010; Accepted 4 August 2010

Academic Editor: Lucilla Parnetti

Copyright © 2010 Elizabeta B. Mukaetova-Ladinska et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


More than 750,000 of the UK population suffer from some form of cognitive impairment and dementia. Of these, 5–20% will have Dementia with Lewy Bodies (DLB). Clinico-pathological studies have shown that it is the low frequency of DLB clinical core features that makes the DLB diagnosis hardly recognisable during life, and easily misdiagnosed for other forms of dementia. This has an impact on the treatment and long-term care of the affected subjects. Having a biochemical test, based on quantification of a specific DLB biomarker within Cerebrospinal Fluid (CSF) could be an effective diagnostic method to improve the differential diagnosis. Although some of the investigated DLB CSF biomarkers are well within the clinical criteria for sensitivity and specificity ( > 90%), they all seem to be confounded by the contradictory data for each of the major groups of biomarkers ( 𝛼 -synuclein, tau and amyloid proteins). However, a combination of CSF measures appear to emerge, that may well be able to differentiate DLB from other dementias: 𝛼 -synuclein reduction in early DLB, a correlation between CSF 𝛼 -synuclein and A 𝛽 42 measures (characteristic for DLB only), and t-tau and p-tau181 profile (differentiating AD from DLB).