A Cross-Sectional Analysis of Late-Life Cardiovascular Factors and Their Relation to Clinically Defined Neurodegenerative Diseases

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Studies have demonstrated associations between cardiovascular factors and Alzheimer disease (AD) with minimal focus on other neurodegenerative diseases. Utilizing cross-sectional data from 17,532 individuals in the National Alzheimer’s Coordinating Center, Uniform Data Set, we compared the presence of cardiovascular factors [body mass index (BMI), atrial fibrillation, hypertension, hyperlipidemia, and diabetes] in individuals carrying a diagnosis of Probable AD (ProbAD), Possible AD, vascular dementia, dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB), frontotemporal dementia, Parkinson disease, progressive supranuclear palsy, or corticobasal degeneration, with that of normals. Generalized linear mixed models were fitted with age at visit, gender, and cardiovascular factors as fixed effects and Alzheimer’s Disease Centers as random effects. In late life, only BMI of ProbAD and DLB patients was statistically significantly lower than that in normals (P–values <0.001). When accounting for colinearity within cardiovascular factors, a low BMI was a comorbidity of certain dementia etiologies as compared with normals. These data support a concept of disease-specific associations with certain cardiovascular factors.

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