Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Does Exposure to Traffic-Related Pollution Affect Dementia in Older Women?

Particulate air pollutants, APOE alleles and their contributions to cognitive impairment in older women and to amyloidogenesis in experimental models (8 page pdf, M Cacciottolo, X Wang, I Driscoll, N Woodward, A Saffari, J Reyes, M L Serre, W Vizuete, C Sioutas, T E Morgan, M Gatz, H C Chui, S A Shumaker, S M Resnick, M A Espeland, C E Finch and J C Chen, Translational Psychiatry, Jan. 31, 2017)

Also discussed here: Air pollution may cause 21 percent of dementias worldwide, study suggests (The San Diego Union-Tribune, Feb. 1, 2017)

And here: Early Onset Familial AD (Gabrielle Strobel, ALZFORUM)

Today we review research based on longer term exposure by female mice to PM 2.5 and how this could affect older women exposed to traffic-related air pollution in their risks of having dementia. Results indicate that women in the late 60s and 70s are 92% more likely to develop dementia if they live in areas that exceed EPA’s standards for PM2.5. The increase in the elderly and the greater risk of dementia has resulted in an overall increase in this disease, despite the improvements in levels of PM 2.5 over the last decade or two, as well as in the increase of deaths from Alzheimer’s, the sixth leading cause of death nationwide.


Key Quotes:

“Women aged 65 to 79 are 81 percent more at risk for general cognitive decline and 92 percent more likely to develop dementia if they live where fine particle matter exceeds the U.S. Environmental Agency’s standards”

“Cells in the brain treat these particles as invaders and react with inflammatory responses, which over the course of time, appear to exacerbate and promote Alzheimer’s disease,” “Since particles of this size are found in polluted air, the findings confirm recent evidence linking environmental factors, such as automotive-derived air pollution, to higher levels of dementia among people living near heavy traffic roads,”

“Residing in places with fine PM exceeding EPA standards increased the risks for global cognitive decline and all-cause dementia respectively by 81 and 92%,”

“ the evidence supports the schema that airborne PM accelerates neurodegenerative processes of ADRD through multiple pathways, including proamyloidogenic APP processing and other pathways independent of amyloid deposits.”

“We showed that nPM exposure increased both plaque formation and neurotoxic oligomers in cerebral cortex at 7 months (approximately equivalent to 35 years of human age, approaching peri-menopause). This implies that Aβ-dependent neurodegenerative processes in women with increased long-term PM exposure may precede cognitive declines or diagnosis of dementia, which is consistent with neuroimaging evidence for Aβ deposition even among cognitively intact individuals in their 50–60s.”

“As air pollution levels have been declining over the past 20 years, long-term exposure, especially during mid- or earlier life, may impart a greater risk”

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