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Continuous Collection of Cerebrospinal Fluid (24-36 hours)

Continuous collection of CSF (24-36 hours)

We have developed the technique for the continuous collection of Cerebrospinal Fluid in humans. This technique offers many opportunities for testing drug efficacy and research projects.
In collaboration with the Alzheimer Centre Nijmegen, we have developed the methodology to collect serial CSF samples using indwelling catheters. This unique technology allows for continuous monitoring of CSF components and / or of active compounds and is thus an excellent tool for application in drug intervention studies.


An indwelling intrathecal catheter is placed under local anesthesia and aseptic conditions in an operation room by an experienced anesthesiologist. A lumbar puncture will be performed, using the L3-4 interspace, with a bore 18 gauge Tuohy needle. The catheter tip is advanced 10 cm into the intrathecal space. The
catheter will be connected to a covered bacterial filter. A loop will be made in the catheter to relieve tension, and the catheter will be taped over the participant’s shoulder. In this way it is possible to sample CSF every hour, with a volume of 6 ml CSF maximally each time.


Using this technique it is possible to monitor the normal diurnal fluctuation of any constituent of the CSF. In this way, the concentrations of the amyloid beta protein and tau proteins as well as alpha-synuclein have been followed over the course of 24-36 hours in both middle-aged and elderly controls and Alzheimer's disease patients (See e.g.Slats et al, 2011; Spies et al, 2011; Huang et al, 2011). Furthermore, this technique allows for the monitoring of effects of specific drugs that alter cerebral metabolism (See e.g. : Bateman et al, 2009; Bateman et al, 2007 , Bateman et al, 2006).
Publications from our group om the application of continuous CSF sampling

Slats D, Claassen JA, Spies PE, Borm G, Besse KT, Aalst WV, Tseng J, Sjögren MJ, Olde Rikkert MG, Verbeek MM. Hourly variability of cerebrospinal fluid biomarkers in Alzheimer's disease subjects and healthy older volunteers.Neurobiol Aging. 2011 Aug 29. PubMed

Spies PE, Slats D, Rikkert MG, Tseng J, Claassen JA, Verbeek MM. CSF α-synuclein concentrations do not fluctuate over hours and are not correlated to amyloid β in humans.Neurosci Lett. 2011 Oct31;504(3):336-8.