In 50 healthy subjects (23 female, 27 male, aged 18-81) and 24 patients with Alzheimer’s disease (AD) (11 female, 13 male, aged 58-88) DHEAS and CRT plasma levels were studied. In normal subjects there was a clear negative correlation of DHEAS to age, while no significant age correlated decrease of CRT plasma levels was found. There was a significant decrease in the DHEAS/CRT ratio in elderly controls (aged > 60) as compared to young individuals (aged < 45). Overall there was a trend to lower DHEAS/CRT ratios in AD patients compared to age matched controls out of the total group of normals (P < 0.1), there was a significant decrease of this ratio in female AD patients (P < 0.05), compared to age matched female controls, but there was none in male Alzheimers; furthermore there was a significant difference in CRT plasma levels between female AD patients and age matched female controls (P < 0.01) and between female and male AD patients (P < 0.05). Considering the antiglucocorticoid effects of DHEAS, this ratio may account for its protective effect against hippocampal degeneration caused by glucocorticoids and possibly for the higher rate of AD in females.
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Source: Psychopharmacology (Berl) 1993;111(1):23-6
PMID: 7870929, UI: 95175717
(Department of Gerontology, Wagner-Jauregg-Krankenhaus, Linz, Austria.)