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Some Ethnicities have a Greater Chance of Developing Alzheimer’s Disease before Age 65

March 15, 2016
New study published in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease found that African Americans, Alaskans and Hawaiians are at greater risk for early-onset Alzheimer’s Disease.

We have been studying early-onset dementia for some years and have been limited by a small number of subjects in order to do proper analyses. We seized the opportunity to analyse statistics from the C-PATH Online Data Repository, which contains information of over 6500 subjects. Previous studies have suggested that certain ethnic minorities might be at risk from early-onset Alzheimer’s disease. Early-onset Alzheimer’s disease (onset before age 65 years) seems to be different from late-onset disease and occurs independent of hypertension, stroke and atrial fibrillation, factors important in old-onset disease. Our previous studies on small numbers urged us to confirm this in a larger dataset. We therefore looked at the analyses of 6500 subjects and observed that Native Americans, Alaskans and African-Americans seem to be at a greater risk of early-onset Alzheimer disease than other ethnicities.

Prof PK Panegyres and Dr HY Chen from Neurodegenerative Disorders Research Pty Ltd (Perth, Western Australia) analysed statistics from the C-PATH online data repository (CODR) and concluded that “ethnicity may impact on Alzheimer’s disease through age of onset, co-morbidities, family history, ApoE gene status and cognitive change over time. The greater odds of early-onset Alzheimer’s disease among African Americans, Alaskans and Hawaiians suggest that some ethnicities may be at risk of Alzheimer’s disease at a younger age.

Figure: The odds of EOAD estimated by logistic regression by ethnicity

HY Chen & PK Panegyres, “The Role of Ethnicity in Alzheimer’s Disease: Findings from the C-PATH Online Data Repository”, Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease, Volume 51, Issue 2 (March 2016) DOI 10.3233/JAD-151089.

Neurodegenerative Disorders Research Pty Ltd (NDR) is a research organisation devoted to the understanding of neurodegenerative disorders. NDR is a not-for-profit organisation, collaborating nationally and internationally.

Professor Peter K. Panegyres, MD, PhD, FRACP
Neurodegenerative Disorders Research Pty Ltd
Ph: +618 9481 6293,