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Using data from the National Institute on Aging Late-Onset Alzheimer’s Disease/National Cell Repository for Alzheimer’s Disease family study (NIA-LOAD), the researchers assessed the contribution of CV risk factors and history of stroke to late-onset Alzheimer’s disease in large families with multiple family members affected by late-onset Alzheimer’s disease. Data from the Washington Heights-Inwood Columbia Aging Project were used to replicate findings.
The primary endpoint was probable or possible late-onset Alzheimer’s disease based on the National Institute of Neurological and Communicative Disorders and Stroke and the Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Disorders Association (NINCDS-ADRDA) criteria. The CV risk factors included in the study were hypertension, type 2 diabetes and CHD.
Giuseppe Tosto, MD, PhD, from Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons and NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital, and colleagues calculated a genetic risk score for late-onset Alzheimer’s disease using genome-wide significant single nucleotide polymorphisms except for APOE E4.
Of the 6,553 participants (mean age, 77 years; 62% women) included in the analyses from NIA-LOAD, 3,468 were diagnosed with late-onset Alzheimer’s disease. Of the 5,972 participants (mean age, 77 years; 68% women) in the replication sample, 2,684 had late-onset Alzheimer’s disease.
In the NIA-LOAD analysis, hypertension was associated with a lower risk for late-onset Alzheimer’s disease (OR = 0.63; 95% CI, 0.55-0.72), whereas a history of stroke was associated with twice the risk for late-onset Alzheimer’s disease (OR = 2.23; 95% CI, 1.75-2.83). No associations were observed between late-onset Alzheimer’s disease and type 2 diabetes or CHD.
In the replication study, hypertension did not have an association with late-onset Alzheimer’s disease, nor did any of the other CV risk factors. However, a relationship was again found between late-onset Alzheimer’s disease and history of stroke (OR = 1.96; 95% CI, 1.56-2.46).
According to the researchers, these results highlight the “complex relationship between hypertension and [late-onset Alzheimer’s disease]” as well as the “importance of interventions targeting modifiable risk factors in [late-onset Alzheimer’s disease]. Further studies with longitudinal assessment and a larger set of variables (eg, different classes of treatments) are currently needed.” – by Tracey Romero
Disclosure: Tosto reports no relevant financial disclosures. Please see the full study for a list of all other researchers’ relevant financial disclosures.