In the first study, published in this week’s Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), older people without dementia whose blood showed lower levels of beta-amyloid 42/40 (proteins) had an increased rate of cognitive decline over nine years. The study found that participants with less education and lower levels of literacy had a stronger association with these biomarker levels. The study involved close to 1,000 participants with an average age of 74.
“What this implies ”” though we don’t know for sure, it’s just an association ”” is that even if you have this bad signature, you might be able to do something about it. Having a higher education appeared to be a sort of a buffer,” says study author Kristine Yaffe of the University of California-San Francisco and San Francisco Veterans Affairs Medical Center.
The second study, also in JAMA, suggests that a certain type of brain imaging procedure may help detect beta-amyloid in living patients.