Association of C-reactive protein with mild cognitive impairment

Rosebud O. Roberts, Yonas E. Geda, David S. Knopman, Bradley F. Boeve, Teresa J.H. Christianson, V. Shane Pankratz, Iftikhar J. Kullo, Eric G. Tangalos, Robert J. Ivnik, Ronald C. Petersen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

86 Scopus citations


Background: Inflammation is proposed to play a role in the development of Alzheimer's disease, and may also be involved in the pathogenesis of mild cognitive impairment (MCI). This study examined the association of inflammatory markers in serum or plasma with prevalent MCI and MCI subtypes in a population-based sample. Methods: Olmsted County, MN, residents aged 70-89 years on October 1, 2004, were evaluated using the Clinical Dementia Rating Scale, a neurological evaluation, and neuropsychological testing. Information ascertained for each participant was reviewed by an expert panel of neuropsychologists, physicians, and nurses, and a diagnosis of normal cognition, MCI, or dementia was made by consensus. C-reactive protein (CRP), interleukin-6 (IL-6), tumor necrosis alpha (TNFα), and adiponectin were measured at baseline. Results: Among 313 subjects with MCI and 1570 cognitively normal subjects, a CRP level in the upper quartile (>3.3 mg/L) was significantly associated with MCI (odds ratio [OR], 1.42; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.00-2.01) and with nonamnestic MCI (OR, 2.05; 95% CI, 1.12-3.78) after adjusting for age, sex, and years of education. However, there was no association with amnestic MCI (OR, 1.21; 95% CI, 0.81-1.82). No association was observed with the other inflammatory markers. Conclusions: Plasma CRP is associated with prevalent MCI and with nonamnestic MCI in elderly, nondemented persons in a population-based setting. These findings suggest the involvement of inflammation in the pathogenesis of MCI.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)398-405
Number of pages8
JournalAlzheimer's and Dementia
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 2009


  • Adiponectin
  • C-reactive protein
  • Cross-sectional
  • Cytokines
  • Inflammation
  • Interleukin-6
  • Mild cognitive impairment
  • Population-based

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Epidemiology
  • Health Policy
  • Developmental Neuroscience
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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