Study examines cognitive impairment in families with exceptional longevity

A study by Stephanie Cosentino, Ph.D., of Columbia University, New York, and colleagues examines the relationship between families with exceptional longevity and cognitive impairment consistent with Alzheimer disease.

The cross-sectional study included a total of 1,870 individuals (1,510 and 360 spouse controls) recruited through the Long Life Family Study. The main outcome measure was the prevalence of cognitive impairment based on a diagnostic algorithm validated using the National Alzheimer's Coordinating Center data set.

According to study results, the cognitive algorithm classified 546 individuals (38.5 percent) as having cognitive impairment consistent with Alzheimer disease. Long Life Family Study probands had a slightly but not statistically significant reduced risk of cognitive impairment compared with spouse controls (121 of 232 for probands versus 45 of 103 for spouse controls), whereas Long Life Family Study sons and daughters had a reduced risk of (11 of 213 for sons and daughters versus 28 of 216 for spouse controls). Restriction to nieces and nephews in the generation attenuated this association (37 of 328 for nieces and nephews versus 28 of 216 for spouse controls).

"Overall, our results appear to be consistent with a delayed onset of disease in long-lived families, such that individuals who are part of exceptionally long-lived families are protected but not later in life," the study concludes.

More information: JAMA Neurol. Published online May 6, 2013. doi:10.1001/.jamaneurol.2013.1959

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Cardiac disease linked to higher risk of mental impairment

Jan 28, 2013

Cardiac disease is associated with increased risk of mild cognitive impairment such as problems with language, thinking and judgment—particularly among women with heart disease, a Mayo Clinic study shows. Known as nonamnestic ...

Recommended for you

Damage to brain networks affects stroke recovery

Nov 21, 2014

(Medical Xpress)—Initial results of an innovative study may significantly change how some patients are evaluated after a stroke, according to researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. ...

Dopamine leaves its mark in brain scans

Nov 21, 2014

Researchers use functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to identify which areas of the brain are active during specific tasks. The method reveals areas of the brain, in which energy use and hence oxygen ...

User comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.