Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Alzheimer's Gene Has Greater Effect on Women

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Women with a certain gene are more likely than men with the same gene to develop Alzheimer's disease, a new study suggests.

In the study, healthy older women with the gene, called ApoE4, were 81 percent more likely to develop Alzheimer's diseaseor mild cognitive impairment (a condition that can lead to Alzheimer's) over a four-year period, compared with women who didn't have the gene.

On the other hand, older men in the study with the ApoE4 gene had only a marginal increase in their risk of Alzheimer's or mild cognitive impairment (a 27 percent increase), compared with men without the gene, the researchers said. [Extending Life: 7 Ways to Live Past 100

The ApoE4 gene is known to increase the risk of Alzheimer's: People with one copy of the gene have a 2- to 4-fold increased risk of Alzheimer's, and those with two copies of the gene have a 10-fold increased risk. 

But few studies have looked at whether that risk differs between men and women, and doctors today generally view men and women with the ApoE4 gene as having equal risk for Alzheimer's, the researchers said.

The new findings suggest that doctors may need to change how they interpret the finding of an ApoE4 gene in people, depending on whether the patient is a man or a woman, the researchers said.

For the rest of the story: http://www.livescience.com/44826-alzheimers-disease-gene-women.html

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