While it is widely shown that possessing the ApoE4 gene is the major genetic risk factor of Alzheimer’s disease (AD), not all ApoE4 carriers develop AD. For the first time, researchers at Boston University School of Medicine (BUSM) have shown that ApoE4 linked with chronic inflammation dramatically increases the risk for AD. This can be detected by sequential measurements of C-reactive protein, a common clinical test which can be could be done routinely in a clinical setting.
“Finding out what mediating factors for ApoE4 increase AD risk is important for developing intervention and prevention of the disease,” explained corresponding author Wendy Qiu, MD, PhD, associate professor of psychiatry and pharmacology & experimental therapeutics at BUSM. “Since many elders have chronic low-grade inflammation after suffering from common diseases like cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, pneumonia and urinary tract infection, or after having surgeries, rigorously treating chronic systemic inflammation in ApoE4 carriers could be effective for prevention of Alzheimer’s dementia.”