New study announced that will use genetics to test for Alzheimer's risk

July 19, 2012

In a new Alzheimer's disease risk assessment study unveiled this week during the Alzheimer's Association International Conference, researchers at Brigham and Women's Hospital (BWH) are offering genetic testing and Alzheimer's risk estimates for people who are experiencing mild cognitive impairment.

The Risk Evaluation and Education for Alzheimer's Disease Study (REVEAL) is a multi-center randomized funded by the National Institutes of Health and led by Robert C. Green, MD, MPH, a physician-scientist in the Division of Genetics at BWH.

"We are on the brink of developing disease modifying treatments and to combat Alzheimer's disease," Green said. "As health professionals begin to put these discoveries into medical practice, they will need to communicate complex risk information to individuals and their families. We expect that the REVEAL study will provide accurate guidance for estimating and communicating risk information to individuals, and we hope that results from REVEAL will inform the future practice of treating individuals at risk for Alzheimer's disease."

The goal of the REVEAL study is to determine how people with mild cognitive impairment and their caregivers respond to health education and . Researchers will evaluate how well participants understand the Alzheimer's risk assessment materials and the implications of the genetic test. After the results are returned to the participants, researchers will monitor how participants adjust psychologically and what they make in response to the new information.

Mild cognitive impairment is a common condition where those affected have noticeable memory and thinking problems but can still carry out their usual activities. People with mild cognitive impairment are at elevated risk for developing Alzheimer's disease, so it is important to evaluate the different methods of providing risk information for Alzheimer's, including genetic testing, to those individuals and their loved ones. REVEAL participants will have the opportunity to learn what it means to have , what their chances are of developing Alzheimer's and how to cope with problems related to memory loss. Researchers will follow up with participants for a period of six months after the risk assessment is received.

Explore further: People with early Alzheimer's disease may be more likely to have lower BMI

Related Stories

People with early Alzheimer's disease may be more likely to have lower BMI

November 21, 2011
Studies have shown that people who are overweight in middle age are more likely to develop Alzheimer's disease decades later than people at normal weight, yet researchers have also found that people in the earliest stages ...

Treating high blood pressure, cholesterol, diabetes may lower risk of Alzheimer's disease

April 13, 2011
Treating high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes and other vascular risk factors may help lower the risk of Alzheimer's disease in people who already show signs of declining thinking skills or memory problems. The ...

Recommended for you

Alzheimer's Tau protein forms toxic complexes with cell membranes

November 22, 2017
The brains of patients with Alzheimer's disease contain characteristic tangles inside neurons. These tangles are formed when a protein called Tau aggregates into twisted fibrils. As a result, the neurons' transport systems ...

Researchers reveal new details on aged brain, Alzheimer's and dementia

November 21, 2017
In a comprehensive analysis of samples from 107 aged human brains, researchers at the Allen Institute for Brain Science, UW Medicine and Kaiser Permanente Washington Health Research Institute have discovered details that ...

Dementia study sheds light on how damage spreads through brain

November 20, 2017
Insights into how a key chemical disrupts brain cells in a common type of dementia have been revealed by scientists.

Researchers describe new biology of Alzheimer's disease

November 20, 2017
In a new study, researchers from Boston University School of Medicine (BUSM) describe a unique model for the biology of Alzheimer's disease (AD) which may lead to an entirely novel approach for treating the disease. The findings ...

Study shows video games could cut dementia risk in seniors

November 16, 2017
Could playing video games help keep the brain agile as we age?

New player in Alzheimer's disease pathogenesis identified

November 14, 2017
Scientists at Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute (SBP) have shown that a protein called membralin is critical for keeping Alzheimer's disease pathology in check. The study, published in Nature Communications, ...

0 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.