Neuroendocrine Changes in Alzheimer’s Disease: Raised Plasma Concentrations of Growth Hormone and Thyroid Stimulating Hormone and Reduced Concentrations of Oestrogen-Stimulated Neurophysin
The neuropathological (Ishii, 1965) and some of the neurochemical features of Alzheimer-type dementia (ATD) affect not only the cerebral cortex but also subcortical structures including the hypothalamus in which there are reductions in the concentrations of acetylcholine (Davies, 1979), noradrenaline (Yates et al, 1981) and somatostatin (Davies et al, 1982). Somatostatin is also reduced in CSF in patients with ATD (Wood et al, 1982). Acetylcholine, noradrenaline and somatostatin are involved in the control of secretion of pituitary hormones (Reichlin, 1985) and the aim of the present study was to determine whether plasma hormone concentrations would 1) reflect the changes in central neurotransmitters that occur in ATD, and 2) prove useful in the differential diagnosis of ATD from other causes of dementia and from depression.
KeywordsDepression Dopamine Dementia Cortisol Noradrenaline
Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.
- Christie, J.E., Whalley, L.J., Dick, H., Blackwood, D.H.R., Blackburn, I.M. and Fink, G., 1985, Raised plasma cortisol concentrations a feature of drug-free psychotics and not specific for depression, Br. J. Psychiat. (in press Jan. 1986).Google Scholar
- Davies, P., Katz, O.A. and Crystal, H.A., 1982, Choline acetyltransferase, somatostatin, and substance P in selected cases of Alzheimer’s disease. Corkin, S., Davis, K.L., Growdon, J.H., Usdin, E., Wurtman, J. eds. in: Alzheimer’s disease: A report of progress in research, New York: Raven Press.Google Scholar
- Fliers, E., Swaab, D.F., Pool, C.W. and Verwer, R.W.H., The vasopressin and oxytocin neurons in the human supraoptic and paraventricular nucleus; changes with aging and in senile dementia. Brain Research (in press).Google Scholar
- Reichlin, S., 1985, Neuroendocrinology, in: Williams Textbook of Endocrinology, 7th edition, London: Sälinders, 492.Google Scholar
- Wing, J.K., Cooper, J.E. and Sartorius, N., 1974, The measurement and classification of psychiatric symptoms. London: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
- Yates, C.M., Harmar, A.J., Rosie, R., Sheward, J., Sanchez De Levy, G. Simpson, J., Maloney, A.F.J., Gordon, A. and Fink, G., 1983, Thyrotropin-releasing hormone, luteinizing hormone-releasing hormone and substance P immuno-reactivity in post-mortem brain from cases of Alzheimer-type dementia and Down’s syndrome, Brain Research 258: 45–52.CrossRefGoogle Scholar