Managing cholesterol might help reduce Alzheimer's risk, says researchers, including one of Indian-origin, who identified a genetic link between the progressive brain disorder and heart disease.
Examining DNA from more than 1.5 million people, the study showed that risk factors for heart disease such as elevated triglyceride and cholesterol levels (HDL, LDL, and total cholesterol) were genetically related to Alzheimer's risk.
However, genes that contribute to other cardiovascular risk factors, like body mass index and Type-2 diabetes, did not seem to contribute to genetic risk for Alzheimer's.
"The genes that influenced lipid metabolism were the ones that also were related to Alzheimer's disease risk," said Celeste M. Karch, Assistant Professor at the Washington University's School of Medicine.
Thus, if the right genes and proteins could be targeted, it may be possible to lower the risk for Alzheimer's disease in some people by managing their cholesterol and triglycerides, added Rahul S. Desikan, Assistant Professor at the UCSF.