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Neurosci Lett. 1995 May 26;191(3):141-4.

The association of apolipoprotein E polymorphism with memory: a population based study.

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Department of Neurology, Kuopio University Hospital, Finland.


Several studies have shown an association between the apolipoprotein epsilon 4 allele and Alzheimer's disease (AD). The allele epsilon 2 has been associated with survival and longevity. We wanted to examine whether the relationship between cognitive efficiency and apolipoprotein E polymorphism (APOE) exists in a random sample of 916 non-demented elderly subjects. Episodic memory was examined with the list learning test, and with immediate and delayed recall of the figures. Semantic memory was examined with the Category and Verbal Fluency Tests. Constructional abilities were examined by copying the figures. Attention functions were examined with Trail Making A and B tests. We found that subjects with APOE E2/2 and 2/3 phenotypes showed better learning ability than those subjects with the APOE E2/4, 3/4 or 4/4 phenotypes. Impaired memory was not related to the excess of cardiovascular diseases in the subjects with APOE E2/4, 3/4, 4/4 phenotypes. Thus they may be associated, at least partly, with genetic factors.

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