Publications & Posters

SIMOA-based analysis of plasma NFL levels in MCI and AD patients: a systematic review and meta-analysis

BMC Neurology | September 18, 2023

Sahrai H, Norouzi A, Hamzehzadeh S, Majdi A, Kahfi-Ghaneh R, Sadigh-Eteghad S.

BMC Neurol. 2023



The single-molecule array assay (SIMOA)-based detection of neurofilament light (NFL) chain could be useful in diagnosing mild cognitive impairment (MCI) and Alzheimer’s disease (AD). This meta-analysis aimed to evaluate the circulating concentration of NFL in AD and MCI patients compared with healthy controls using the SIMOA technique.


To this end, Google Scholar, PubMed, Scopus, Web of Science, and the reference lists of relevant articles were systematically searched for studies reporting serum NFL chain levels in healthy controls, MCI, and AD patients. Appropriate statistical methods were employed to achieve the study purpose.


Fifteen eligible studies including 3086 patients were pooled out of a total of 347 publications. Fixed effect model analysis showed that NFL chain level was significantly higher in the serum of patients with MCI (0.361 SMD, 95% CI, 0.286–0.435, p = 0.000, I2 = 49.179) and AD (0.808 SMD, 95% CI, 0.727–0.888, p = 0.000, I2 = 39.433) compared with healthy individuals. The analysis also showed that the NFL chain levels in plasma were significantly different between patients with MCI and AD (0.436 SMD, 95% CI, 0.359–0.513, p = 0.000, I2 = 37.44). The overall heterogeneity of the studies was modest.


This study highlights the potential of serum NFL chain detected using SIMOA in differentiating MCI, AD, and healthy controls.