For the study, researchers examined research data on 949 people with an average age of 79 from the Framingham Heart Study. At the start of the study, participants were free of dementia and were tested for depressive symptoms based on questions about general depression, sleep complaints, social relationships and other factors. A total of 125 people, or 13 percent, were classified as having depression at the start of the study.
The participants were followed for up to 17 years.
At the end of the study, 164 people had developed dementia with 136 specifically diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease. Nearly 22 percent of people who were depressed at the start of the study developed dementia compared to about 17 percent of those who were not depressed, a 70 percent increased risk in those who were depressed. The 10-year absolute risk for dementia was 0.21 in people without depressive symptoms and 0.34 in people with depressive symptoms. The results were the same regardless of a person’s age, sex, education and whether they had the APOE gene that increases a person’s risk of Alzheimer’s disease.
“While it’s unclear if depression causes dementia, there are a number of ways depression might impact the risk of dementia,” said study author Jane Saczynski, PhD, with the University of Massachusetts Medical School in Worcester, MA. “Inflammation of brain tissue that occurs when a person is depressed might contribute to dementia. Certain proteins found in the brain that increase with depression may also increase the risk of developing dementia. In addition, several lifestyle factors related to long-term depression, such as diet and the amount of exercise and social time a person engages in, could also affect whether they develop dementia.”
Saczynski hopes the study, which is one of the largest and longest population based studies to date, helps clear up confusion over earlier studies that reported inconsistent results about the link between depression and dementia.
The study was supported by the National Institute on Aging, the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, and the National Heart Lung and Blood Institute and was made possible by the continued participation of the study participants.
The American Academy of Neurology, an association of more than 22,000 neurologists and neuroscience professionals, is dedicated to promoting the highest quality patient-centered neurologic care. A neurologist is a doctor with specialized training in diagnosing, treating and managing disorders of the brain and nervous system such as stroke, Alzheimer’s disease, epilepsy, Parkinson’s disease, and multiple sclerosis.
Rachel L. Seroka | American Academy of Neurology
Rutgers-led innovation could spur faster, cheaper, nano-based manufacturing
14.02.2018 | Rutgers University
New study from the University of Halle: How climate change alters plant growth
12.01.2018 | Martin-Luther-Universität Halle-Wittenberg
For the first time, an interdisciplinary team from the University of Basel has succeeded in integrating artificial organelles into the cells of live zebrafish embryos. This innovative approach using artificial organelles as cellular implants offers new potential in treating a range of diseases, as the authors report in an article published in Nature Communications.
In the cells of higher organisms, organelles such as the nucleus or mitochondria perform a range of complex functions necessary for life. In the networks of...
Animal photoreceptors capture light with photopigments. Researchers from the University of Göttingen have now discovered that these photopigments fulfill an...
On 15 March, the AWI research aeroplane Polar 5 will depart for Greenland. Concentrating on the furthest northeast region of the island, an international team...
The world’s second-largest ice shelf was the destination for a Polarstern expedition that ended in Punta Arenas, Chile on 14th March 2018. Oceanographers from...
At the 2018 ILA Berlin Air Show from April 25–29, the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT is showcasing extreme high-speed Laser Material Deposition (EHLA): A video documents how for metal components that are highly loaded, EHLA has already proved itself as an alternative to hard chrome plating, which is now allowed only under special conditions.
When the EU restricted the use of hexavalent chromium compounds to special applications requiring authorization, the move prompted a rethink in the surface...
19.03.2018 | Event News
16.03.2018 | Event News
13.03.2018 | Event News
19.03.2018 | Physics and Astronomy
19.03.2018 | Materials Sciences
19.03.2018 | Event News