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Circle of willis atherosclerosis is a risk factor for sporadic Alzheimer's disease.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE

We conducted a quantitative investigation of brain arterial atherosclerotic damage and its relationship to sporadic Alzheimer's disease (AD).

METHODS AND RESULTS

Fifty-four consecutive autopsy cases, 32 AD and 22 nondemented control subjects, were examined to establish the degree of arterial stenosis. Vessel external and lumenal area measurements were taken from 3-mm arterial cross-sections to calculate a stenosis index. AD patient circle of Willis arteries possessed a significant degree of stenosis as a consequence of multiple and severe atherosclerotic lesions. These lesions were significantly more severe in AD cases than in age-matched controls (P<0.0001), and the number of stenoses and the index of occlusion (R=0.67; P<0.00001) were positively correlated. In addition, the index of stenosis significantly correlated with the following measures of AD neuropathological lesions: total plaque score, neuritic plaque score, neurofibrillary tangle score, Braak stage score, and white matter rarefaction score.

CONCLUSIONS

Our study reveals an association between severe circle of Willis atherosclerosis and sporadic AD that should be considered a risk factor for this dementia. These observations strongly suggest that atherosclerosis-induced brain hypoperfusion contributes to the clinical and pathological manifestations of AD.

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  • Authors+Show Affiliations

    ,

    Longtine Center for Molecular Biology and Genetics, Sun Health Research Institute, 10515 W Santa Fe Dr, Sun City, AZ 85351, USA. alex.roher@sunhealth.org

    , , , , , ,

    Source

    MeSH

    Aged
    Aged, 80 and over
    Alzheimer Disease
    Autopsy
    Cardiovascular Diseases
    Circle of Willis
    Comorbidity
    Female
    Humans
    Incidence
    Intracranial Arteriosclerosis
    Male
    Middle Cerebral Artery
    Neurofibrillary Tangles
    Risk Factors
    Sex Distribution
    Stroke

    Pub Type(s)

    Journal Article
    Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
    Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

    Language

    eng

    PubMed ID

    14512367

    Citation

    Roher, Alex E., et al. "Circle of Willis Atherosclerosis Is a Risk Factor for Sporadic Alzheimer's Disease." Arteriosclerosis, Thrombosis, and Vascular Biology, vol. 23, no. 11, 2003, pp. 2055-62.
    Roher AE, Esh C, Kokjohn TA, et al. Circle of willis atherosclerosis is a risk factor for sporadic Alzheimer's disease. Arterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol. 2003;23(11):2055-62.
    Roher, A. E., Esh, C., Kokjohn, T. A., Kalback, W., Luehrs, D. C., Seward, J. D., ... Beach, T. G. (2003). Circle of willis atherosclerosis is a risk factor for sporadic Alzheimer's disease. Arteriosclerosis, Thrombosis, and Vascular Biology, 23(11), pp. 2055-62.
    Roher AE, et al. Circle of Willis Atherosclerosis Is a Risk Factor for Sporadic Alzheimer's Disease. Arterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol. 2003 Nov 1;23(11):2055-62. PubMed PMID: 14512367.
    * Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
    TY - JOUR T1 - Circle of willis atherosclerosis is a risk factor for sporadic Alzheimer's disease. AU - Roher,Alex E, AU - Esh,Chera, AU - Kokjohn,Tyler A, AU - Kalback,Walter, AU - Luehrs,Dean C, AU - Seward,James D, AU - Sue,Lucia I, AU - Beach,Thomas G, Y1 - 2003/09/25/ PY - 2003/9/27/pubmed PY - 2004/4/7/medline PY - 2003/9/27/entrez SP - 2055 EP - 62 JF - Arteriosclerosis, thrombosis, and vascular biology JO - Arterioscler. Thromb. Vasc. Biol. VL - 23 IS - 11 N2 - OBJECTIVE: We conducted a quantitative investigation of brain arterial atherosclerotic damage and its relationship to sporadic Alzheimer's disease (AD). METHODS AND RESULTS: Fifty-four consecutive autopsy cases, 32 AD and 22 nondemented control subjects, were examined to establish the degree of arterial stenosis. Vessel external and lumenal area measurements were taken from 3-mm arterial cross-sections to calculate a stenosis index. AD patient circle of Willis arteries possessed a significant degree of stenosis as a consequence of multiple and severe atherosclerotic lesions. These lesions were significantly more severe in AD cases than in age-matched controls (P<0.0001), and the number of stenoses and the index of occlusion (R=0.67; P<0.00001) were positively correlated. In addition, the index of stenosis significantly correlated with the following measures of AD neuropathological lesions: total plaque score, neuritic plaque score, neurofibrillary tangle score, Braak stage score, and white matter rarefaction score. CONCLUSIONS: Our study reveals an association between severe circle of Willis atherosclerosis and sporadic AD that should be considered a risk factor for this dementia. These observations strongly suggest that atherosclerosis-induced brain hypoperfusion contributes to the clinical and pathological manifestations of AD. SN - 1524-4636 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/14512367/Circle_of_willis_atherosclerosis_is_a_risk_factor_for_sporadic_Alzheimer's_disease_ L2 - http://www.ahajournals.org/doi/full/10.1161/01.ATV.0000095973.42032.44?url_ver=Z39.88-2003&amp;rfr_id=ori:rid:crossref.org&amp;rfr_dat=cr_pub=pubmed DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -