Biomarkers of chronic inflammation and cognitive decline: A prospective observational study

Bhavna A. Guduguntla, Alexi Vasbinder, Elizabeth Anderson, Tariq U. Azam, Pennelope Blakely, Noah J. Webster, Richard Gonzalez, Toni Atonucci, Judith L. Heidebrink, Bruno Giordani, Laura Zahodne, Benjamin M. Hampstead, Kristine J. Ajrouch, Salim S. Hayek

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We sought to determine whether the biomarkers of chronic inflammation predict cognitive decline in a prospective observational study. We measured baseline serum soluble urokinase plasminogen activator receptor (suPAR) and high sensitivity C-reactive protein (hs-CRP) levels in 282 participants of the University of Michigan Memory and Aging Project. Cognitive function was measured using the Montreal Cognitive Assessment (MoCA) and the Clinical Dementia Rating (CDR) scale for up to five time points. SuPAR and hs-CRP levels were not significantly higher in participants with mild cognitive impairment (n = 97) or dementia (n = 59), compared to those with normal cognitive function (n = 126). Overall, 14% of participants experienced significant cognitive decline over the study period. The change in MoCA or CDR scores over time did not differ significantly according to baseline suPAR or hs-CRP levels. Chronic systemic inflammation, as measured by serum suPAR or hs-CRP levels, is unlikely to contribute significantly to cognitive decline.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere12568
JournalAlzheimer's and Dementia: Diagnosis, Assessment and Disease Monitoring
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2024
Externally publishedYes


  • Alzheimer's disease
  • cognition
  • dementia
  • hs-CRP
  • suPAR

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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