Alzheimer's & Other Dementias

Latest news

  • A large 10-year study investigating the benefits of a brain training program for older adults found that training designed to improve processing speed & visual attention in particular reduced dementia risk.

Findings from the Advanced Cognitive Training for Independent and Vital Elderly (ACTIVE) Study, which followed 2,802 healthy older adults for 10 years, has found that those who participated in computer training designed to improve processing speed and visual attention had a 29% lower risk of dev

  • A long-running study found older adults who moved more were less likely to develop dementia, even when they had brain pathologies characteristic of dementia.

A long-running study involving 454 older adults who were given physical exams and cognitive tests every year for 20 years has found that those who moved more than average maintained more of their cognitive skills than people who were less active than average, even if they have brain lesions or b

  • A large, long-running study has found older adults with a slower walking speed were more likely to develop dementia in the next decade.
  • Another long-running study has found that slowing over 14 years was linked to brain atrophy in the hippocampus, and cognitive impairment.

Data from the English Longitudinal Study of Aging, in which nearly 4,000 older adults (60+) had their walking speed assessed on two occasions in 2002-2003 and in 2004-2005, those with a slower walking speed were more likely to develop dementia in the next 10 years.

  • A very large study found that an unhealthy lifestyle and high genetic risk were independently associated with higher dementia risk, and a healthy lifestyle reduced the risk for those at high genetic risk.

Data from 196,383 older adults (60+; mean age 64) in the UK Biobank found that a healthy lifestyle was associated with lower dementia risk regardless of genes.

Both an unhealthy lifestyle and high genetic risk were associated with higher dementia risk.

  • A very long-running Swedish study found that women with high levels of mental or physical activity in midlife were less likely to develop dementia.

A very long-running study, in which 800 Swedish women (aged 38-54) were followed for 44 years, found that women with a high level of mental activities in midlife were 46% less likely to develop Alzheimer's disease and 34% less likely to develop dementia overall, compared with women with the low

  • A very small study found that just 30 minutes of visually-guided movements per week could slow and even reverse the progress of dementia in those in the early stages of dementia.

Various forms of dementia, including Alzheimer's, involve brain network problems. Brain regions are not coordinating as well as they should;

  • A large study found a better cardiovascular health score was linked to a lower dementia risk and slower rates of cognitive decline, with both aspects reducing with each positive factor.
  • A large, long-running study found that higher systolic blood pressure at age 50 was linked to a greater risk of developing dementia, even when below the threshold for hypertension.
  • A large study reports that aggressive lowering of systolic blood pressure reduced the risk of MCI and dementia.
  • A long-running study found that older adults with high levels of arterial stiffness were more likely to develop dementia during the next 15 years.
  • Hypertensive rats exhibited larger ventricles, decreased brain volume, and impaired fluid transport in the brain possibly linked to impaired clearance of amyloid proteins.

Optimal levels of cardiovascular health in older age associated with lower dementia risk

  • Lymphatic vessels surround the brain and are vital to its ability to manage waste.
  • A mouse study has found that improvements to the flow of waste from brain to lymph nodes dramatically improved their cognition, while obstructing the lymphatic vessels increased the level of amyloid-beta plaques.

Although first reported in 1816, the fact that the brain is surrounded by lymphatic vessels, which connect the brain and the immune system, was only rediscovered in 2015.

  • A rat brain cell study provides evidence that alcohol may increase Alzheimer's risk by impeding the removal of amyloid-beta protein.
  • A very large French study found that 38% of early-onset dementia cases were directly alcohol-related and 18% had an additional diagnosis of alcohol use disorders.

How alcohol increases Alzheimer's risk

  • Compounds found in green tea and carrots reversed Alzheimer's-like symptoms in mice.

A diet containing compounds found in green tea and carrots reversed Alzheimer's-like symptoms in mice genetically programmed to develop the disease.

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