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  • Print publication year: 2020
  • Online publication date: May 2020

31 - Blood Biomarkers of Cognitive Health and Neurodegenerative Disease

from Part IV - Cognitive, Social, and Biological Factors across the Lifespan


The aging of any biological system results in quantifiable change which may affect the output of the system in subtle or substantial ways. Human cognitive aging is no exception and the manner in which the system, in this case the brain, is able to withstand and/or adapt to the effects of age-related physiological change will determine the individual cognitive trajectory. In this chapter, we review the emerging field of blood biomarkers of cognitive aging with a focus on specific metabolic pathways implicated in cognitive health including cellular energetics, lipid metabolism, the maintenance of redox state, and inflammation. Challenges to blood biomarker development, including methodological and inferential limitations, are also reviewed. Ultimately, blood biomarkers of age-related neurodegenerative disease and cognitive success will provide clues for how we might all age successfully, reducing health care burden on societies and improving quality of life for individuals.

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