This observational study seeks to determine the influence of Alzheimer's disease and vascular disease on memory and aging in African Americans through biomarkers. Results of brain scans and lumbar punctures for African Americans will be compared with those of white Americans.
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Accepts Healthy Volunteers
Epidemiologic studies show that, compared to non-Hispanic white Americans, African Americans are more likely to develop MCI and Alzheimer's disease, have different genetic risks of developing Alzheimer's, and experience different rates of cognitive decline. The investigators hypothesize that endothelial dysfunction independently contributes to cognitive impairment in African Americans with Alzheimer's pathology, and that this dysfunction enhances the neurotoxicity of Alzheimer's-associated brain changes. (The endothelium is a thin layer of cells that line blood vessels and lymph vessels.)
Participants will undergo procedures to collect samples of Alzheimer's biomarkers, including cerebrospinal fluid, MRI, and amyloid imaging, another type of brain scan. Markers of endothelial function and inflammation will also be assessed. In addition, researchers will examine a gene variant unique to African Americans to see if it enhances Alzheimer's neurotoxicity, which may explain the greater hippocampal atrophy among African Americans with MCI compared with whites.
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Geolocation is 33.7980995, -84.3259367
National Institute on Aging (NIA)
William Hu, MD, PhD