Posted by WBHI on May 2, 2013 in Great Minds Think Alike
by Chicago Tribune:
Researchers, doctors, drug and biotech companies, and medical institutions worldwide are urgently seeking to better understand the intricacies of brain function — and particularly to develop therapies to prevent or treat diseases such as Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia.
But despite this substantial effort, no drug or therapy can beat the powerful effect that regular physical exercise has in preventing Alzheimer’s and improving brain function — even in those with Alzheimer’s.
One Mayo Clinic study showed that those who regularly engaged in moderate exercise five or six times a week in later life reduced their risk of mild cognitive impairment by 32 percent compared with more sedentary people. Those who began exercising at midlife saw a 39 percent reduction in the risk of mild cognitive impairment.
Posted by WBHI on Apr 19, 2013 in Think Ahead
by Geoff Michaels for News Fix:
Dementia, including Alzheimer’s disease, may have a very long period of onset. Mild cognitive impairment (MCI) has already been established as a condition which precedes dementia. In MCI, individuals have cognitive test results that are below normal, but they are still capable of undertaking the majority of everyday activities (unlike those with dementia). Around 10-20% of those with MCI will progress to dementia each year.
Researchers at the University of Bonn have identified a condition that precedes even MCI and is also linked to a higher risk of dementia. With subjective memory impairment (SMI), an individual has problems with their memory that they are aware of and these may, or may not, cause concern.
Posted by WBHI on Mar 27, 2013 in Think Ahead
by Doug Brunk for Clinical Psychiatry News:
Robust behavioral changes are not common in presymptomatic familial Alzheimer’s disease, but increases in certain behaviors such as agitation, apathy, and appetitive changes can accompany early cognitive changes, results from a large ongoing study demonstrated.
The findings “are consistent with observations in late-onset Alzheimer’s disease and support behavioral changes in familial Alzheimer’s disease being a state associated with incipient Alzheimer’s pathology rather than a life-long disposition,” Dr. John M. Ringman said at the annual meeting of the American Academy of Neurology.
“It’s well established now that the neuropathology of Alzheimer’s disease begins 15-20 years prior to overt symptoms,” said Dr. Ringman, a neurologist at the Mary S. Easton Center for Alzheimer’s Disease Research at the University of California, Los Angeles. “Symptoms of depression, anxiety, apathy, and irritability are more frequent in persons with mild cognitive impairment (MCI). Further studies suggest that the presence of such symptoms in the context of MCI may better predict who will progress to develop Alzheimer’s disease.”
Posted by WBHI on Oct 19, 2012 in Think About It
by Anna Hodgekiss for Daily Mail:
Older people who eat a diet high in carbohydrates are four times more likely to develop mild cognitive impairment – a precursor to Alzheimer’s disease.
New research from the prestigious Mayo Clinic in America has found the risk is also higher with a diet high in sugar. On the other hand, proteins and fats appear to offer some protection – people who consumed plenty of them are less likely to suffer cognitive decline.
Not everyone with mild cognitive impairment (MCI) develops Alzheimer’s disease, but many do, said lead author Rosebud Roberts, a professor in the department of epidemiology at the Mayo Clinic.
MCI is defined as memory loss apparent to the individual and those around them, but with an absence of other dementia symptoms such as changes in personality and mood.
Posted by WBHI on Sep 10, 2012 in Think Ahead
by Science Blog:
By the time older adults are diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease, the brain damage is irreparable. For now, modern medicine is able to slow the progression of the disease but is incapable of reversing it. What if there was a way to detect if someone is on the path to Alzheimer’s before substantial and non-reversible brain damage sets in?
This was the question Erin K. Johns, a doctoral student in Concordia University’s Department of Psychology and member of the Center for Research in Human Development (CRDH), asked when she started her research on older adults with mild cognitive impairment (MCI). These adults show slight impairments in memory, as well as in “executive functions” like attention, planning, and problem solving. While the impairments are mild, adults with MCI have a high risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease.
Posted by WBHI on Aug 13, 2012 in Great Minds Think Alike
by Denise Mann for MedMD:
Drinking a cocoa-rich beverage every day may help brain health in older adults, a new study shows.
The study, published in Hypertension, included 90 elderly people who already had mild cognitive impairment (MCI), which can include difficulty with memory, language, thinking, or judgment.
For eight weeks, they drank a cocoa drink that had high, medium, or low amounts of antioxidants called flavanols. Those who got high and medium levels of flavanols in their drink did better on tests of attention and other mental skills, compared to people who got low amounts of flavanols.
Flavanols “could be one element of a dietary approach to the maintaining and improving not only of cardiovascular health, but also specifically brain health,” write the researchers, including Giovambattista Desideri, MD, of Italy’s University of L’Aquila.
Posted by WBHI on Jun 29, 2012 in Think It Over
by Alice G. Walton for Forbes:
It’s a good thing that Obamacare has passed, because it looks like more and more of us are going to need it. Alzheimer’s disease is projected to affect 80 million people in the next 20 years, and we’re only in our infancy of understanding the cause(s) of this most common form of dementia. Recent years, however, have brought to light some interesting and startling links, and researchers are beginning to understand more about how the disease spreads through the brain, and indeed how it may begin.
And while there are probably several origins, one of the triggers may be, alarmingly, something many of us experience: Stressful life events.
A new study from Britain will look further into the connection between chronic stress and the development of dementia. The concept that lifetime stressors could trigger the development of the disease, or at least facilitate the leap from mild cognitive impairment (MCI) to full-blown dementia, has gained momentum in recent years, and researchers are starting to devote more resources to exploring the relationship more fully.
Posted by WBHI on Jun 21, 2012 in Wishful Thinking
by Medical XPress:
Australian researchers have found biomarkers in the blood that could help develop a test to identify people in the early stages of Alzheimer’s disease.
University of New South Wales School of Psychiatry Professor Perminder Sachdev and his team looked at apolipoproteins, which transport cholesterol in the blood, and found they were dysregulated – or abnormal – in patients with mild cognitive impairment. The research findings are published in the journal PLOS ONE.
“Essentially, this is one step towards developing a suite of biomarkers to include a number of different proteins that will identify individuals with mild cognitive impairment who will probably go on to develop Alzheimer’s disease or dementia in the future,” Professor Sachdev says.
Evidence suggests these proteins are involved in Alzheimer’s disease and some other brain diseases, Professor Sachdev says.
Posted by WBHI on Jun 11, 2012 in Think It Over
by Tod Neale for MedPage Today:
Passively monitoring how quickly an individual walks in the home may provide clues about the development of mild cognitive impairment, researchers suggested.
Older individuals with mild cognitive impairment were more likely than their cognitively intact counterparts to walk slowly instead of at a moderate or fast speed, according to Hiroko Dodge, PhD, of Oregon Health & Science University in Portland, and colleagues.
In addition, mild cognitive impairment was associated with variations in walking speed, the researchers reported in the June 12 issue of Neurology.
“Although we found a difference in decline in walking speed between the nonamnestic mild cognitive impairment and cognitively intact groups, further in-home studies will be required to translate this finding to clinically relevant ways of identifying those who may develop mild cognitive impairment prospectively,” the authors wrote.
Posted by WBHI on Jun 5, 2012 in Sooner Than You Think
A NEW breakthrough in dementia testing, developed in Ireland, could indicate the early signs of the disease in less than five minutes.
The Quick Mild Cognitive Impairment (Qmci) screen has been developed and refined by Prof Willie Molloy and Dr Rónán O Caoimh at UCC and St Finbarr’s Hospital, Cork.
The details of the test are being presented in a keynote address to the annual conference of AIGNA, the All-Ireland Gerontological Nurses Association, in the Silver Springs Hotel in Cork on Thursday, June 7.
It is a huge advance on standard tests, and aims specifically to discover whether people have mild cognitive impairment (Qmci), such as short-term memory loss, which could lead to dementia.