Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland
A cross-sectional study of alzheimer-related proteins in women with polycystic ovary syndrome.pdf (2.7 MB)

A cross-sectional study of Alzheimer-related proteins in women with polycystic ovary syndrome

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journal contribution
posted on 2024-03-28, 12:30 authored by Alexandra ButlerAlexandra Butler, Abu Saleh Md Moin, Thozhukat Sathyapalan, Stephen AtkinStephen Atkin

Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is the most common endocrine condition in women of reproductive age, and several risk factors found in PCOS are associated with an increased risk of Alzheimer's disease (AD). Proteins increased in AD have been reported to include fibronectin (FN) fragments 3 and 4 (FN1.3 and FN1.4, respectively) and ApoE. We hypothesized that Alzheimer-related proteins would be dysregulated in PCOS because of associated insulin resistance and obesity. In this comparative cross-sectional analysis, aptamer-based SomaScan proteomic analysis for the detection of plasma Alzheimer-related proteins was undertaken in a PCOS biobank of 143 women with PCOS and 97 control women. Amyloid precursor protein (APP) (p < 0.05) and amyloid P-component (APCS) (p < 0.001) were elevated in PCOS, while alpha-synuclein (SNCA) (p < 0.05) was reduced in PCOS. Associations with protective heat shock proteins (HSPs) showed that SNCA positively correlated with HSP90 (p < 0.0001) and HSP60 (p < 0.0001) in both the PCOS and control women. Correlations with markers of inflammation showed that APCS correlated with interleukin 6 (IL6) (p = 0.04), while Apolipoprotein (Apo) E3 correlated with TNF-alpha (p = 0.02). FN, FN1.3, FN1.4 and ApoE were all elevated significantly (p < 0.05). An AD-associated protein pattern with elevated FN, FN1.3, FN1.4 and ApoE was found in PCOS, in addition to elevated APP and reduced SNCA, which was the same as reported for type 2 diabetes (T2D) with, additionally, an elevation in APCS. With the AD biomarker pattern in PCOS being very similar to that in T2D, where there is an association between AD and T2D, this suggests that larger prospective cohort studies are needed in women with PCOS to determine if there is a causal association with AD. 


Data Availability Statement

All the data for this study will be made available upon reasonable request to the corresponding authors


The original article is available at

Published Citation

Butler AE, Moin ASM, Sathyapalan T, Atkin SL. A cross-sectional study of Alzheimer-related proteins in women with polycystic ovary syndrome. Int J Mol Sci. 2024;25(2):1158.

Publication Date

18 January 2024

PubMed ID



  • RCSI Bahrain




  • Published Version (Version of Record)