Alzheimer's & dementia : the journal of the Alzheimer's Association

Cerebrospinal fluid sTREM2 levels are associated with gray matter volume increases and reduced diffusivity in early Alzheimer's disease.

PMID 27423963


TREM2 is involved in the regulation of inflammatory response and phagocytosis. A soluble fragment (sTREM2) is often found abnormally increased in cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) in Alzheimer's disease (AD). One hundred fourteen participants (45 control, 19 preclinical, 27 mild cognitive impairment [MCI], and 23 AD) underwent CSF sTREM2 determination and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). We studied the association between CSF sTREM2, gray matter volume, and water motion diffusivity and anisotropy across groups. In MCI patients, a positive correlation between CSF sTREM2 and gray matter volume was found in the bilateral inferior and middle temporal cortices, precuneus, the supramarginal, and angular gyri, after controlling by age, sex, and p-tau. A negative correlation with mean diffusivity was detected in overlapping regions, among others. In early AD, augmented CSF sTREM2 levels correspond with cerebral MRI features typical of brain swelling, supporting a role for TREM2 in the regulation of the neuroinflammatory response to early neurodegeneration.