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Substantial effects of APOE ε4 on memory decline in very old age: Longitudinal findings from a population-based sample

Journal article
Authors Marcus Praetorius
Valgeir Thorvaldsson
Linda Hassing
Boo Johansson
Published in Neurobiology of Aging
Volume 34
Issue 12
Pages 2734-2739
ISSN 0197-4580
Publication year 2013
Published at Department of Psychology
Pages 2734-2739
Language en
Links dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.neurobiolaging...
https://gup.ub.gu.se/file/206752
Keywords APOE, Cognition, Cognitive performance, Cognitive change, Oldest old, ALZHEIMERS-DISEASE, COGNITIVE-ABILITIES, TERMINAL DECLINE, DEMENTIA, INDIVIDUALS, ASSOCIATION, DIAGNOSIS, KHANN G, 1984, NEUROLOGY, V34, P939
Subject categories Neurology, Geriatrics

Abstract

We examined associations between the apolipoprotein E (APOE) epsilon 4 allele and levels of performance and rates of change in cognition in late life taking incident dementia into account. The sample consisted of 482 nondemented individuals, aged 80 years and older at baseline, drawn from the OCTO twin study. A battery of 10 cognitive tests was administered at 5 occasions with measurements intervals of 2 years. We fitted hierarchical linear models with time specified as time to death and controlled for baseline age, sex, education, stroke, cardiovascular disease, hypertension, diabetes, and incident dementia. The epsilon 4 allele was significantly associated with lower levels of performance or steeper rate of decline in all 7 memory tests. Largest effect sizes were found in tests of delayed recall and recognition memory. The effects of the APOE epsilon 4 allele were, however, reduced to a nonsignificant level in all tests except 1 after accounting for incident dementia. The findings support the notion that the APOE epsilon 4 allele is associated with substantial memory decline in very old age, but as expected, the effect is largely related to incident dementia. (C) 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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