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J Geriatr Psychiatry Neurol. 2005 Dec;18(4):187-91.

Middle-aged children of Alzheimer parents, a pilot study: stable neurocognitive performance at 20-year follow-up.

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University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), Department of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences and Neuropsychiatric Institute and Hospital, Los Angeles, California 90095-1759, USA.


The objective of this pilot study on a convenience sample of 25 offspring of Alzheimer patients (mean age 61.5 +/- 8.8 years; range, 50-82) was the early detection of neurocognitive decline. This preliminary report appears to be the first one dealing with 20-year follow-up of neurocognitive data of Alzheimer's disease (AD) children. Digit symbol (Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale) was the only of 11 neurocognitive measures with a significant decline. And that decline between first and last testing (mean = 19.98 +/- 0.30 years) was on raw scores, not scaled scores. Neither parents' age at onset of AD nor autopsy confirmation or offspring APOE-e4 status influenced neurocognitive results. More robust data than currently available are needed to confirm the findings of this first pilot study and to determine both the trajectory of neurocognitive decline in AD and the risks of developing AD faced by children whose parent had the disease.

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