“This new risk index could be very important both for research and for people at risk of developing dementia and their families,” said study author Deborah E. Barnes, PhD, MPH, of the University of California, San Francisco, San Francisco Veterans Affairs Medical Center and member of the American Academy of Neurology.
“It could be used to identify people at high risk for dementia for studies on new drugs or prevention methods. The tool could also identify people who have no signs of dementia but should be monitored closely, allowing them to begin treatment as soon as possible, and potentially helping them maintain their thinking and memory skills and quality of life longer.”
The risk index is a 15-point scale. People who score eight or more points on the scale are at high risk of developing dementia in the next six years. Several of the items on the scale are well-known risk factors for Alzheimer’s disease, such as older age, low scores on tests of thinking skills, and having a gene that has been linked to the disease.
Other factors predicting dementia risk were more surprising: People who are underweight, do not drink alcohol, have had coronary bypass surgery, or are slow at performing physical tasks such as buttoning a shirt are more likely to develop dementia than people who do not have these risk factors.
To develop the index, researchers in the Cardiovascular Health Study examined 3,375 people with an average age of 76 and no evidence of dementia and followed them for six years. During that time, 480 of the people, or 14 percent, developed dementia. The researchers then determined which factors best predicted who would develop dementia and created the point index.
A total of 56 percent of those with high scores on the index developed dementia, compared to 23 percent of those with moderate scores and four percent of those with low scores. Overall, the index correctly classified 88 percent of the participants.
Barnes said the risk index will need to be validated with other studies, and she and her colleagues are evaluating whether a shorter, more simplified index could be as accurate as this index.
The study was supported by the National Institutes of Health, the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, the National Institute on Aging, and the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke.
The American Academy of Neurology, an association of more than 21,000 neurologists and neuroscience professionals, is dedicated to improving patient care through education and research. A neurologist is a doctor with specialized training in diagnosing, treating and managing disorders of the brain and nervous system such as multiple sclerosis, restless legs syndrome, Alzheimer’s disease, narcolepsy, and stroke.
Biofilm discovery suggests new way to prevent dangerous infections
23.05.2017 | University of Texas at Austin
Another reason to exercise: Burning bone fat -- a key to better bone health
19.05.2017 | University of North Carolina Health Care
Staphylococcus aureus is a feared pathogen (MRSA, multi-resistant S. aureus) due to frequent resistances against many antibiotics, especially in hospital infections. Researchers at the Paul-Ehrlich-Institut have identified immunological processes that prevent a successful immune response directed against the pathogenic agent. The delivery of bacterial proteins with RNA adjuvant or messenger RNA (mRNA) into immune cells allows the re-direction of the immune response towards an active defense against S. aureus. This could be of significant importance for the development of an effective vaccine. PLOS Pathogens has published these research results online on 25 May 2017.
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Physicists from the University of Würzburg are capable of generating identical looking single light particles at the push of a button. Two new studies now demonstrate the potential this method holds.
The quantum computer has fuelled the imagination of scientists for decades: It is based on fundamentally different phenomena than a conventional computer....
An international team of physicists has monitored the scattering behaviour of electrons in a non-conducting material in real-time. Their insights could be beneficial for radiotherapy.
We can refer to electrons in non-conducting materials as ‘sluggish’. Typically, they remain fixed in a location, deep inside an atomic composite. It is hence...
Two-dimensional magnetic structures are regarded as a promising material for new types of data storage, since the magnetic properties of individual molecular building blocks can be investigated and modified. For the first time, researchers have now produced a wafer-thin ferrimagnet, in which molecules with different magnetic centers arrange themselves on a gold surface to form a checkerboard pattern. Scientists at the Swiss Nanoscience Institute at the University of Basel and the Paul Scherrer Institute published their findings in the journal Nature Communications.
Ferrimagnets are composed of two centers which are magnetized at different strengths and point in opposing directions. Two-dimensional, quasi-flat ferrimagnets...
An Australian-Chinese research team has created the world's thinnest hologram, paving the way towards the integration of 3D holography into everyday...
24.05.2017 | Event News
23.05.2017 | Event News
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26.05.2017 | Life Sciences
26.05.2017 | Life Sciences
26.05.2017 | Physics and Astronomy