Saturday, January 02, 2016

Stress in older people increases risk for pre-Alzheimer's condition

Public Release: 11-Dec-2015
Stress in older people increases risk for pre-Alzheimer's condition
Albert Einstein College of Medicine

eeling stressed out increases the likelihood that elderly people will develop mild cognitive impairment--often a prelude to full-blown Alzheimer's disease. In a new study, scientists at Albert Einstein College of Medicine and Montefiore Health System found that highly stressed participants were more than twice as likely to become impaired than those who were not. Because stress is treatable, the results suggest that detecting and treating stress in older people might help delay or even prevent the onset of Alzheimer's. The findings were published online today in Alzheimer Disease & Associated Disorders.


To confirm that stress was independently increasing risk for aMCI in this study, the researchers assessed whether depression--which increases the risk for stress as well as for cognitive impairment and Alzheimer's disease--might have influenced the results. They found that depression did not significantly affect the relationship observed between stress and the onset of aMCI. Similarly, stress's impact on cognitive status was unaffected if participants possessed at least one e4 allele of the APOE gene, which increases their risk for developing late-onset Alzheimer's.

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