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Is Apolipoprotein E4 an Important Risk Factor for Dementia in Persons with Down Syndrome?

Journal: Journal of Parkinson’s disease and Alzheimer's disease (Vol.1, No. 1)

Publication Date:

Authors : ; ; ; ;

Page : 1-7

Keywords : Apolipoprotein E4 (ApoE4); Down syndrome; Pathology; Risk factors; Alzheimer’s disease; Neurofibrillary tangles; Beta-amyloid; Senile plaques; Mortality;

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Down syndrome is one of the most common genetic causes of intellectual disability and is characterized by a number of behavioral as well as cognitive symptoms. Triplication of all or part of human chromosome 21 has been considered as the main cause of Down syndrome. Due to the location of the amyloid precursor protein on chromosome 21, many of the neuropathological features of early-onset Alzheimer’s disease including senile plaques and neurofibrillary tangles are also present in Down syndrome patients who are either demented or nondemented. Significant advances in medical treatment have increased longevity in people with Down syndrome resulting in an increased population that may be subjected to many of the same risk factors as those with Alzheimer’s disease. It is well established that harboring one or both apolipoprotein E4 alleles greatly increases the risk for Alzheimer’s disease. However, whether apolipoprotein E4 contributes to an earlier onset of dementia or increased mortality in Down syndrome patients is still a matter of debate. The purpose of this mini review is to provide an updated assessment on apolipoprotein E4 status and risk potential of developing dementia and mortality associated with Down syndrome.

Last modified: 2015-06-23 20:16:05