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Topics at Noon – Amyloid deposition and cognitive/adaptive functioning in adults with Down syndrome
April 21, 2016 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
Benjamin L. Handen, Ph.D. Professor of Psychiatry, Pediatrics, and Psychology, University of Pittsburgh
Down syndrome (or Trisomy 21) is one of the most common causes of Intellectual Disability (Mental Retardation; ID), accounting for about 15% of all individuals in this population. Individuals with Down syndrome are at an extremely high risk for developing Alzheimer’s disease (AD), due to the fact that the A-beta precursor protein (APP) gene lies on chromosome 21. As a result, most individuals with Down syndrome over age 40 evidence amyloid deposits and well over half of adults with Down syndrome have developed AD by age 60 . We report the preliminary results of a longitudinal study documenting amyloid deposition in 81 asymptomatic adults with DS, over half of whom have been followed for at least 36 months, in order to better understand the course of amyloid deposition and its effect on functioning over time.
This data is necessary to deepen our understanding of the pathophysiology of AD in Down syndrome and may have additional implications for the general population.