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Similar Brain Atrophy in Obesity and Alzheimer’s Disease

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The pattern of brain atrophy is obesity and those Alzheimer’s disease (AD), a new study shows.

Researchers say a comparison of MRI scans from more than 1,000 participants showed a correlation between the two conditions, especially in areas of gray matter thinning, suggesting that managing excess weight slowed cognitive decline. It has been suggested that it may reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease.

However, obese brain maps did not correlate with maps of amyloid or tau protein accumulation.

Dr. Philip Morris

“The fact that obesity-related brain atrophy did not correlate with the distribution of amyloid and tau protein in Alzheimer’s disease was not what we expected,” said study author, McGill University, Montreal, Canada. said postdoctoral researcher Dr. Philip Morris. Medscape Medical News“However, it may simply indicate that the specific mechanisms underpinning neurodegeneration associated with obesity and Alzheimer’s disease are different. This remains to be confirmed.”

of research published today Alzheimer’s Disease Journal.

cortical thinning

The current research is based on the team’s previous researchshowed that obesity-associated neurodegenerative patterns were visually similar to those of AD, Morys said. However, we wanted to directly compare both patterns of brain atrophy, which is what we did in this new study.”

Researchers analyzed data from a pooled sample of over 1300 participants. From the ADNI database, researchers selected a participant with her AD and age- and sex-matched, cognitively healthy controls. The researchers drew a sample of lean, overweight and obese participants without neurological disease from a UK biobank.

To determine how the weight status of patients with Alzheimer’s disease affects the correspondence between the Alzheimer’s disease map and the obesity map, they leaned Alzheimer’s disease participants and healthy controls from the ADNI database. They were classified into overweight and obese subgroups.

Next, to explore possible mechanisms driving similarities between obesity-related brain atrophy and Alzheimer’s disease-related amyloid-beta accumulation, we examined overlapping regions in PET brain maps between patients with these outcomes. I searched.

The study showed that the obesity map was highly correlated with the AD map, but not with the amyloid beta or tau protein maps. We also found that there was a significant correlation between

The brain regions with the highest similarity between obesity and Alzheimer’s disease were mainly located in the left temporal lobe and bilateral prefrontal cortex.

“Our study confirms that obesity-related gray matter atrophy resembles that of Alzheimer’s disease,” the authors conclude. “Excessive weight management may lead to improved health outcomes, slow aging-related cognitive decline, and reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease.”

Future research “will focus on investigating how weight loss affects risk for Alzheimer’s disease, other dementias, and general cognitive decline,” Morys said. “At this point, our research is focused not only on obesity prevention and weight loss, but also on type 2 diabetes and high blood pressure, may reduce the risk of AD and have beneficial effects on cognition. “

Lifestyle habit

Dr. Claire Sexton

Commenting on Medscape’s findings, Claire Sexton, DPhil, vice president of science programs and outreach at the Alzheimer’s Association, cautioned that a single cross-sectional study is inconclusive. “Previous research has shown that the relationship between obesity and dementia is complex. There is increasing evidence that people can reduce their risk of cognitive decline by adopting

The Alzheimer’s Association is leading a two-year clinical trial, US pointerto study how combining these risk factors can reduce the risk of cognitive decline in older adults.

This work was supported by a Foundation Scheme Award from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research. Morys received a postdoctoral fellowship from the Fonds de Recherche du Quebec – Santé. Data collection and sharing was funded by the Alzheimer’s Disease Neuroimaging Initiative, the National Institute on Aging, the National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Biotechnology, multiple pharmaceutical companies and other private organizations. Morris and Sexton have not reported any related financial relationships.

J. Artz DisPublished online on January 31, 2022. full text

Follow Marilyn Larkin on Twitter. @MarilynL.

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