Associations between Multimorbidity and Cerebrospinal Fluid Amyloid: A Cross-Sectional Analysis of the European Prevention of Alzheimer's Dementia (EPAD) V500.0 Cohort

Lucy E. Stirland, Tom C. Russ, Craig W. Ritchie, Graciela Muniz-Terrera, Maria Vassilaki

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Background: Multimorbidity (the co-occurrence of multiple chronic conditions) is increasingly common, especially among people with dementia. Few neuroimaging studies have explored amyloid biomarkers in people with multimorbidity. Objective: We aimed to conduct the first study of the association between multimorbidity and cerebrospinal fluid amyloid-β42 (CSF Aβ). Method: The European Prevention of Alzheimer's Dementia (EPAD) Longitudinal Cohort Study V500.0 dataset includes volunteers aged ≥50 years from 12 sites. Participants undergo detailed phenotyping, including CSF measures and a self-reported medical history. Using logistic and linear regression analyses, we explored the association between multimorbidity and continuous chronic condition count with CSF Aβ positivity (Aβ42 <1000pg/ml) and continuous CSF Aβ concentration. All models were adjusted for age, sex, APOE status, education, and family history of dementia. Results: Among 447 eligible participants without dementia, the mean (SD) age was 66.6 (6.6) years, 234 (52.3%) were women, and 157 (35.1%) were amyloid positive. With chronic conditions regarded as pseudo-continuous, each additional condition carried a decreased likelihood of amyloid positivity (OR=0.82, 95% CI: 0.68-0.97; p=0.026). With CSF Aβ as a continuous variable, each additional condition was associated with an increase of 54.2 pg/ml (95% CI: 9.9-98.5, p=0.017). Having ≥2 conditions was inversely associated with amyloid positivity (OR 0.59, 95% CI: 0.37-0.95, p=0.030) compared to one or none. Conclusion: Our findings suggest that the established association between multimorbidity and dementia may be due to a pathway other than amyloid. However, this cross-sectional study does not allow us to make causal inferences. Longitudinal work is required to confirm the inverse association found.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)703-711
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Alzheimer's Disease
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jan 1 2019



  • Alzheimer's disease
  • amyloid
  • dementia
  • multimorbidity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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