Erythropoietin and polyneuropathy in older persons

Fulvio Lauretani, Stefania Bandinelli, Elsa S. Strotmeyer, Anna Maria Corsi, Angelo Di Iorio, Jack M. Guralnik, Luigi Ferrucci

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Introduction: Recent studies demonstrated that erythropoietin (EPO) have a number of non-erythropoietic effects including neuroprotection and vascular protection. Materials: Using data from a representative sample of older persons, we tested the hypothesis that EPO levels are correlated with peripheral nerve parameters (NVC and CMAP) assessed by surface ENG and with clinically diagnosed polyneuropathy. We selected 972 participants (aged 60-98 years) with complete data for the analyses. Results: We found a significant association between EPO and age-adjusted NCV and CMAP (for NCV: 0.57 ± 0.26; p = 0.03 and for CMAP: 0.54 ± 0.23; p = 0.02). In logistic regression models adjusting for age, sex and multiple potential confounders, higher EPO levels were associated with a significantly lower probability of having a clinical diagnosis of polyneuropathy (OR = 0.43; 95% CI: 0.22-0.84). Discussion: These findings suggest that EPO is implicated in the pathogenesis of polyneuropathy in older persons. Whether low EPO is a risk factor for polyneuropathy should be tested in future longitudinal analyses.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)299-303
Number of pages5
JournalMechanisms of Ageing and Development
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2008
Externally publishedYes


  • EPO
  • InCHIANTI study
  • Polyneuropathy
  • Population-based study
  • Prevention

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Aging
  • Biochemistry
  • Developmental Biology
  • Developmental Neuroscience


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