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Horm Behav. 1999 Jun;35(3):254-63.

Relationships between dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate (DHEAS) and cortisol (CRT) plasma levels and everyday memory in Alzheimer's disease patients compared to healthy controls.

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  • 1Department of Psychology, McGill University, Montreal, Canada.


Fifty-two age-matched Alzheimer's disease (AD) patients (26 men, 26 women), mean age 76.2 years, were assessed with the Rivermead Behavioural Memory Test, a test of everyday memory, coincident with the measurement of plasma cortisol (CRT) and dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate (DHEAS) via radioimmunoassay. The AD patients were compared to a control group of age- and gender-matched healthy elderly men and women. No differences were found between the AD patients and the controls in DHEAS or CRT levels, or in the DHEAS/CRT ratio. There were no gender differences in DHEAS or CRT levels, or in the DHEAS/CRT ratio in subjects with AD. However, AD patients with higher levels of DHEAS scored better than those with lower levels on the subtests of Remembering a Name associated with a picture, Digit Span Total and Forward, and the Mini Mental Status Exam. AD patients with higher CRT levels performed worse on Delayed Route Recall than those with lower levels. These findings suggest that AD patients with higher endogenous levels of DHEAS may perform better on some memory tasks than those with lower levels, while AD patients with lower levels of CRT may perform better than those with higher CRT.

Copyright 1999 Academic Press.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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