Using genetics to enable studies on the prevention of Alzheimer's disease.
Curing Alzheimer's disease (AD) remains an elusive goal; indeed, it may even prove to be impossible, given the nature of the disease. Although modulating disease progression is an attractive target and will alleviate the burden of the most severe stages, this strategy will not reduce the prevalence of the disease itself. Preventing or (as described in this article) delaying the onset of cognitive impairment and AD will provide the greatest benefit to individuals and society by pushing the onset of disease into the later years of life. Because of the high variability in the age of onset of the disease, AD prevention studies that do not stratify participants by age-dependent disease risk will be operationally challenging, being large in size and of long duration. We present a composite genetic biomarker to stratify disease risk so as to facilitate clinical studies in high-risk populations. In addition, we discuss the rationale for the use of pioglitazone to delay the onset of AD in individuals at high risk.
Crenshaw, DG; Gottschalk, WK; Lutz, MW; Grossman, I; Saunders, AM; Burke, JR; Welsh-Bohmer, KA; Brannan, SK; Burns, DK; Roses, AD
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