Health alert: The link between race, gender & Alzheimer's disease

Researchers have found that women are statistically more likely than men to develop Alzheimer's disease and other forms of dementia.

Researchers have found that women are statistically more likely than men to develop Alzheimer's disease and other forms of dementia.

African-Americans are about twice as likely and Hispanics are about one and a half times more likely than older whites to get Alzheimer's disease and other forms of dementia. 

Dr. R. Scott Turner, director of Memory Disorders at MedStar Georgetown, says that's an area that needs a lot more research.

"We know that risk increases with age but it increases even higher for African-Americans and Hispanics and we really don't know why. Some people thinks it's environmental, genetics, probably a combination of those 2 things. By environmental; I mean like perhaps a different diet or perhaps more hypertension, diabetes which are also risk factors for Alzheimer’s disease," said Dr. R. Scott Turner, Director of Memory Disorders at MedStar in Georgetown said. 

To get some answers Georgetown is recruiting patients and families, especially minorities, for several Alzheimer studies. One needs participants to help determine the impact the drug Nilotinib has on mild to moderate cases of Alzheimer’s. And the first major prevention study, the Generations Study, is open for those with an inherited genetic risk for Alzheimer’s who have not developed memory issues. 

"We need volunteers from everyone, African-American, Hispanics, Caucasians, everyone so we know the difference in the disease in different populations and if our drugs are going to be effective for all populations and not just one population," Dr. R. Scott Turner added. 

If you'd like to be part of the solution and volunteer for the Alzheimer's trials in the Georgetown Memory Disorders click here: http://memory.georgetown.edu or https://www.endalznow.org/genematch

 

© 2017 WUSA-TV


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