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Alzheimer's Disease - Dementia

NIH - Medical Encyclopedia Alzheimer's Disease

"Alzheimer's disease (AD), one form of dementia, is a progressive, degenerative brain disease. It affects memory, thinking, and behavior. Memory impairment is a necessary feature for the diagnosis of this or any type of dementia. Change in one of the following areas must also be present: language, decision-making ability, judgment, attention, and other areas of mental function and personality. The rate of progression is different for each person. If AD develops rapidly, it is likely to continue to progress rapidly. If it has been slow to progress, it will likely continue on a slow course. There are two types of AD -- early onset and late onset. In early onset AD, symptoms first appear before age 60. Early onset AD is much less common, accounting for only 5-10% of cases. However, it tends to progress rapidly. The brain tissue shows "neurofibrillary tangles" (twisted fragments of protein within nerve cells that clog up the cell), "neuritic plaques" (abnormal clusters of dead and dying nerve cells, other brain cells, and protein), and "senile plaques" (areas where products of dying nerve cells have accumulated around protein). Although these changes occur to some extent in all brains with age, there are many more of them in the brains of people with AD."

Highlighted Articles

Education and Alzheimer disease without dementia: support for the cognitive reserve hypothesis. (Neurology. 2007)

"CONCLUSIONS: Regardless of the neuropathologic criteria used, education is predictive of dementia status among individuals with neuropathologic Alzheimer disease. These results support the theory that individuals with greater cognitive reserve, as reflected in years of education, are better able to cope with AD brain pathology without observable deficits in cognition."

Nutritional factors, cognitive decline, and dementia. (Brain Res Bull. 2006)

"Nutritional factors and nutritional deficiencies have been repeatedly associated with cognitive impairment. … Deficiencies of several B vitamins have been associated with cognitive dysfunction in many observational studies. More recently, deficiencies of folate (B(9)) and cobalamine (B(12)) have been studied in relation to hyperhomocysteinemia as potential determinants of cognitive impairment, dementia, and Alzheimer's disease (AD). A small number of studies assessed the association between intake of macronutrients and cognitive function or dementia. Among the others, the intake of fatty acids and cholesterol has received particular attention. Although the results are not always consistent, most studies have reported a protective role of dietary intakes of poly- and mono-unsaturated fatty acids against cognitive decline and AD."

Exercise Is Associated with Reduced Risk for Incident Dementia among Persons 65 Years of Age and Older (Annals of Internal Medicine 2006)

"Conclusion: These results suggest that regular exercise is associated with a delay in onset of dementia and Alzheimer disease, further supporting its value for elderly persons."

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Alzheimer's Disease - Dementia

Risk Factors

NEWS:

Abnormal Brain Pathology Likely Culprit For Family History Of Alzheimer's Disease

Anemia Might Raise Dementia Risk, Study Suggests

APOE plasma levels and dementia risk

Atrial fibrillation hastens cognitive decline

Calcification in Large Vessels Linked to Cognitive Decline

Copper in Environment May Be Tied to Alzheimer's

Could Herpes Virus Affect Memory in Older Adults?

Depression Associated With More Rapid Functional Decline In Alzheimer's Patients

Diet May Affect Alzheimer's Disease Risk

Early-onset dementia linked to adolescent risk factors

Exposure To General Anaesthesia Could Increase The Risk Of Dementia In Elderly By 35%

Football Players at Increased Alzheimer’s Risk

Framingham Risk Scores Best Predictors of Cognitive Decline?

Glucose Levels and Risk of Dementia (NEJM 2013)

High Blood Pressure May Add to Alzheimer's Risk, Study Finds

High Blood Sugar May Add to Alzheimer's Risk: Study

High-Fat Diet Could Interrupt Amyloid Clearance

Hypertension Interacts With APOE Epsilon 4 to Increase Amyloid Load

Increased risk of dementia in people with previous exposure to general anesthesia: A nationwide population-based case-control study. (Alzheimers Dement. 2013)

Iron Is at Core of Alzheimer's Disease, Study Suggests

Late-Life Depression Linked to Increased Risk for Dementia

Link Between Passive Smoking And Dementia

Long-Term Cognitive Impairment after Critical Illness. (N Engl J Med. 2013)

Metabolic Syndrome and CRP Linked to Cognitive Decline

Mid-life stress linked to dementia risk

Odd Rhythm Linked to Earlier Memory Issues

Pathways to neurodegeneration: mechanistic insights from GWAS in Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, and related disorders. (Am J Neurodegener Dis. 2013)

Red meat may raise Alzheimer's risk

Saturated Fat May Make the Brain Vulnerable to Alzheimer's “"People who received a high-saturated-fat, high-sugar diet showed a change in their ApoE, such that the ApoE would be less able to help clear the amyloid," said research team member Suzanne Craft, a professor of medicine at Wake Forest School of Medicine. Amyloid beta proteins left loose in the brain are more likely to form plaques that interfere with neuron function, the kind of plaques found in the brains of people with Alzheimer's disease. Diet also directly affected the amount of loose amyloid beta found in cerebrospinal fluid, Craft said. Those on a high-saturated-fat diet had higher levels of amyloid beta in their spinal fluid, while people on a low-saturated-fat diet actually saw a decline in such levels, she said. "An amyloid that is not cleared -- or attached to ApoE to get cleared -- has a greater likelihood of becoming this toxic form," Craft said.”

Sleep Quality, Not Quantity, Linked to Amyloid Deposition

Stress contributes to develop central insulin resistance during ageing: Implications for Alzheimer´s disease. (Biochim Biophys Acta. 2013)

Study Links Low Blood Sugar with Dementia

The relationship between long-term sunlight radiation and cognitive decline in the REGARDS cohort study. (Int J Biometeorol. 2013) “We found that lower levels of solar radiation were associated with increased odds of incident cognitive impairment.”

Too Much Saturated Fat Tied to Alzheimer's Risk? “In a small study published online Monday in the journal JAMA Neurology, researchers found that dietary saturated fat cut the body's levels of the chemical apolipoprotein E, also called ApoE, which helps "chaperone" amyloid beta proteins out of the brain. "People who received a high-saturated-fat, high-sugar diet showed a change in their ApoE, such that the ApoE would be less able to help clear the amyloid," said research team member Suzanne Craft, a professor of medicine at Wake Forest School of Medicine. Amyloid beta proteins left loose in the brain are more likely to form plaques that interfere with neuron function, the kind of plaques found in the brains of people with Alzheimer's disease. Diet also directly affected the amount of loose amyloid beta found in cerebrospinal fluid, Craft said. Those on a high-saturated-fat diet had higher levels of amyloid beta in their spinal fluid, while people on a low-saturated-fat diet actually saw a decline in such levels, she said. "An amyloid that is not cleared -- or attached to ApoE to get cleared -- has a greater likelihood of becoming this toxic form," Craft said.” … People focus on diet in terms of weight and heart health, but they overlook that nutrition can be key to cognitive function as well, Craft said. "Diet is a very underappreciated factor in terms of brain function," she said. "It's quite well accepted for your heart and your cholesterol and your blood, but diet is critical for a healthy brain aging. Many of the things the brain needs to function properly -- fatty acids, certain amino acids -- come only from food." “

ARTICLES:

JOURNAL ARTICLES:

Aluminum Involvement in the Progression of Alzheimer's Disease. (J Alzheimers Dis. 2013)

Apolipoprotein E4 effects in Alzheimer's disease are mediated by synaptotoxic oligomeric amyloid-ß. (Brain. 2012) “Together, these data suggest that apolipoprotein E4 is a co-factor that enhances the toxicity of oligomeric amyloid-ß both by increasing its levels and directing it to synapses, providing a link between apolipoprotein E e4 genotype and synapse loss, a major correlate of cognitive decline in Alzheimer's disease.”

Association between Tobacco Smoking and Cognitive Functioning in Young Adults. (Am J Addict. 2012)

Blood Pressure and Progression of Brain Atrophy:The SMART-MR Study (JAMA Neurol. 2013)

Blood pressure variability and risk of dementia in an elderly cohort, the Three-City Study. (Alzheimers Dement. 2013)

Cognitive Decline and Dementia Risk in Older Adults With Psychotic Symptoms: A Prospective Cohort Study. (Am J Geriatr Psychiatry. 2013)

Delirium in older people after proximal femoral fracture repair: Role of a preoperative screening cognitive test. (Ann Fr Anesth Reanim. 2013)

Dyslipidemia and the risk of Alzheimer's disease. (Curr Atheroscler Rep. 2013)

Exposure To General Anaesthesia Could Increase The Risk Of Dementia In Elderly By 35%

Exposure to particulate air pollution and cognitive decline in older women. (Arch Intern Med. 2012)

Genetic Influences on Atrophy Patterns in Familial Alzheimer's Disease: A Comparison of APP and PSEN1 Mutations. (J Alzheimers Dis . 2013)

Higher Rates of Decline for Women and Apolipoprotein E {varepsilon}4 Carriers (Am J Neuroradiol 2013)

High-sugar diets, type 2 diabetes and Alzheimer's disease. (Curr Opin Clin Nutr Metab Care. 2013)

Hypercholesterolemia accelerates amyloid ß-induced cognitive deficits. (Int J Mol Med. 2013)

Increased risk of dementia in patients with mild traumatic brain injury: a nationwide cohort study. (PLoS One. 2013)

Much of late life cognitive decline is not due to common neurodegenerative pathologies. (Ann Neurol. 2013) "Interpretation: The pathologic indices of the common causes of dementia are important determinants of cognitive decline in old age and account for a large proportion of the variation in late life cognitive decline. Surprisingly, however, much of the variation in cognitive decline remains unexplained, suggesting that other important determinants of cognitive decline remain to be identified. Identification of the mechanisms that contribute to the large unexplained proportion of cognitive decline is urgently needed to prevent late life cognitive decline."

Metabolic Syndrome and Cognitive Decline in Early Alzheimer's Disease and Healthy Older Adults. (J Alzheimers Dis. 2013)

Pulmonary function impairment may be an early risk factor for late-life cognitive impairment

Sleep disturbance is associated with incident dementia and mortality. (Curr Alzheimer Res. 2013)

The omega-6/omega-3 ratio and dementia or cognitive decline: a systematic review on human studies and biological evidence. (J Nutr Gerontol Geriatr. 2013)





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