Common variant in GRN is a genetic risk factor for hippocampal sclerosis in the elderly

Dennis W. Dickson, Matthew Baker, Rosa Rademakers

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

63 Scopus citations


Background: Hippocampal sclerosis (HpScl) is common in elderly subjects with dementia, either alone or accompanied by other pathologic processes. It is also found in >70% of frontotemporal lobar degeneration with TDP-43 immunoreactive inclusions (FTLD-TDP). TDP-43 inclusions are detected in >20% of Alzheimer disease (AD) and >70% of HpScl cases. The most common cause of FTLD-TDP is mutation in the progranulin gene (GRN). Recently, a common genetic variant in the 3′ untranslated region (3′UTR) of GRN (rs5848; c.*78C>T) located in a microRNA binding site regulated progranulin expression, and the T-allele was increased in FTLD-TDP compared to controls. Objective: The goal of this study was to determine if the 3′UTR variant in GRN was associated with TDP-43 immunoreactivity in AD with and without HpScl. Methods: 644 cases of pathologically confirmed AD, including 57 with HpScl, were screened for TDP-43 immunoreactivity and were genotyped at the GRN 3′UTR single-nucleotide polymorphism rs5848 using previously published methods. Results: There was a trend (p = 0.06) for TDP-43 immunoreactivity, but a very significant (p = 0.005) association of HpScl with the variant, with 72% of AD with HpScl carrying a T-allele, compared to 51% of AD without HpScl carrying a T-allele. Conclusion: The results suggest that a genetic variant in GRN leading to decreased levels of progranulin may be a risk factor for HpScl in AD, while its role in TDP-43 immunoreactivity in AD remains less certain.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)170-174
Number of pages5
JournalNeurodegenerative Diseases
Issue number1-3
StatePublished - Apr 2010


  • Alzheimer's disease
  • Hippocampal sclerosis
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Progranulin gene

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology


Dive into the research topics of 'Common variant in GRN is a genetic risk factor for hippocampal sclerosis in the elderly'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this