In this paper we show that the levels of neurofilament light (NfL), a marker of neuronal injury, are markedly increased in plasma from individuals actively ill in anorexia nervosa (AN). NfL is also elevated in plasma from individuals whom have recovered from AN compared to normal weight controls, but not to the same extent as in active AN. Elevated plasma/serum/CSF levels of NfL have previously been shown in Alzheimer’s, multiple sclerosis and ALS. This adds new information regarding the AN biology and indicates that axonal injury seems to occur at least during the active illness in AN. The long-term consequences and exact location of this injury is something we will to continue to explore by e.g., combining evaluations of NfL levels in CSF with imaging approaches.
Nilsson IAK, Millischer V, Karrenbauer VD, Juréus A, Salehi AM, Norring C, et al. Plasma neurofilament light chain concentration is increased in anorexia nervosa. Transl Psychiatry. 2019 Aug 1;9(1):180.