Gene doubles Alzheimer’s risk in African Americans

04/2013

A study involving nearly 6,000 African American older adults has found those with a specific gene variant have almost double the risk of developing late-onset Alzheimer’s disease compared with African Americans who lack the variant. The size of the effect is comparable to that of the ‘Alzheimer’s gene’, APOE-e4.

The gene (ABCA7) is involved in the production of cholesterol and lipids. It also affects the transport of several important proteins, including amyloid precursor protein, which is involved in the production of amyloid-beta.

The finding suggests that lipid metabolism may be a more important pathway in Alzheimer’s disease in African Americans than in whites. Cholesterol and lipid imbalances are more common in African Americans.

The gene does not seem to be a significant risk factor for whites, adding more weight to the idea that there are multiple pathways to the disease, and showing that the genetic underpinnings may vary among different populations (although it should be noted that other genes linked to Alzheimer’s risk in white populations were also significant for this group).

http://www.futurity.org/health-medicine/gene-tied-to-double-alzheimers-risk-in-african-americans/

[3364] Reitz C, J. G.
(2013).  VAriants in the atp-binding cassette transporter (abca7), apolipoprotein e ϵ4,and the risk of late-onset alzheimer disease in african americans.
JAMA. 309(14), 1483 - 1492.

Related News

A study involving 2,050 people aged 70 to 89 has found that mild cognitive impairment was 1.5 times more common in men than women.

Reports on cognitive decline with age have, over the years, come out with two general findings: older adults do significantly worse than younger adults; older adults are just as good as younger adults.

A pilot study involving six patients with mild Alzheimer’s has shown using Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS) is safe and may help improve memory, or at least slow decline. Patients received continuous stimulation for 12 months, between 2005 and 2008.

Following on from indications that gum disease might be a risk factor for dementia, analysis of data from 152 subjects in the Danish Glostrop Aging Study has revealed that periodontal inflammation at age 70 was strongly associated with lower cognitive scores (on the Digit Symbol Test).

A two-year study involving 271 older adults (70+) with mild cognitive impairment has found that the rate of brain atrophy in those taking folic acid (0.8 mg/d), vitamin B12 (0.5 mg/d) and vitamin B6 (20 mg/d), was significantly slower than in those taking a placebo, with those taking the supplem

A number of studies have found evidence that fruits and vegetables help fight age-related cognitive decline, and this has been thought to be due to their antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects.

I have often spoken of the mantra: What’s good for your heart is good for your brain.

A number of studies have found that source memory (knowing where you heard/read/experienced something) is a particular problem for older adults. Destination memory (knowing who you’ve told) is an area that has been much less studied.

On the subject of the benefits of walking for seniors, it’s intriguing to note a recent pilot study that found frail seniors who walked slowly (no faster than one meter per second) benefited from a brain fitness program known as Mindfit.

A study involving 65 older adults (59-80), who were very sedentary before the study (reporting less than two episodes of physical activity lasting 30 minutes or more in the previous six months), has found that those who joined a walking group improved their cognitive performance and the connecti

Pages

Subscribe to Latest newsSubscribe to Latest newsSubscribe to Latest health newsSubscribe to Latest news