Study examines association between small-vessel disease, Alzheimer pathology

Cerebral small-vessel disease (SVD) and Alzheimer disease (AD) pathology appear to be associated.

AD is believed to be caused by the buildup of in the brain and tau tangles. Previous studies have suggested that SVD and increase the risk of developing AD. In both SVD and (VaD), signs of AD pathology have been seen. But it remains unclear how the interaction between SVD and AD pathology leads to dementia.

Authors examined the association between SVD and AD pathology by looking at (MRI)-based microbleeds (MB), (WMH) and lacunes (which are measures for SVD) along with certain protein levels in cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) which reflect AD pathophysiology in patients with AD, VaD and healthy control patients. The authors also examined the relationship of apolipoprotein E (APOE) Ɛ4 genotype, a well-known risk factor for AD.

The presence of both MBs and WMH was associated with lower CSF levels of Aβ42, suggesting a direct relationship between SVD and AD. Amyloid deposits also appear to be abnormal in patients with SVD, especially in (APOE) Ɛ4 carriers.

"Our study supports the hypothesis that the pathways of SVD and AD pathology are interconnected. Small-vessel disease could provoke amyloid pathology while AD-associated cerebral amyloid pathology may lead to auxiliary vascular damage." Maartje I. Kester, M.D., Ph.D., of the VU University Medical Center, Amsterdam, the Netherlands, and colleagues wrote in their JAMA Neurology paper.

More information: JAMA Neurol. Published online May 12, 2014. DOI: 10.1001/.jamaneurol.2014.754

Related Stories

Nonmelanoma skin cancer tied to lower Alzheimer's risk

date May 16, 2013

(HealthDay)—Older individuals with nonmelanoma skin cancer (NMSC) seem to have a significantly reduced risk of developing Alzheimer's disease (AD), according to a study published online May 15 in Neurology.

Recommended for you

Implications of dual-tasking on dementia research

date Jul 06, 2015

You turn the street corner and bump into an old friend. After the initial greetings and exclamations of "It's so good to see you!" and "Has it been that long?", your friend inquires as to where you are going. ...

A healthy body often equals a healthy brain

date Jun 30, 2015

(HealthDay)—People who want to stay sharp as they age often turn to brain teasers, puzzles and games, figuring correctly that they'll lose it if they don't use it.

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.