Klotho (KL) gene has been involved in severe alterations of physiological biochemical parameters leading to premature aging-like phenotypes and strikingly shortening lifespan. KL participates to the regulation of a number of intracellular biochemical pathways, including lipid profile and glucose metabolism. Aim of this study was to investigate the possible association between KL locus and biological parameters commonly accepted as indicators of the clinical status in hospitalized older patients. We genotyped the single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) rs9536314, rs1207568, and rs564481 at the KL locus in 594 hospitalized older patients (65–99 years), consecutively attending a geriatric ward, and tested the association of these KL variants with biological quantitative traits using analyses of covariance and genetic risk score models. Significant associations of rs9536314 with serum levels of hemoglobin, albumin, and high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL-C) as well as significant associations of rs564481 with serum levels of hemoglobin, fasting insulin, and fasting glucose were observed. Gender-segregated analyses confirmed these associations, and suggested that the associations of KL genotypes with HDL-C, fasting glucose and fasting insulin levels may be driven by the female gender, while the association with serum levels of hemoglobin may be driven by the male gender. The association of KL genotypes with creatinine levels was found only in females, while the association with insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1) and lymphocytes count (LC) was found only in males. The genetic risk score (GRS) models further confirmed significant associations among KL SNPs and hemoglobin, total cholesterol, and HDL-C. Gender-segregated analyses with the GRS-tagged approach confirmed the associations with HDL-C, fasting glucose, and fasting insulin levels in females, and with hemoglobin and LC in males. Our findings suggested that KL locus may influence quantitative traits such as serum levels of lipid, fasting glucose, albumin and hemoglobin in hospitalized older patients, with some gender differences suggested for creatinine, IGF-1 levels, and LC, thus being one of the genetic factors possibly contributing to age-related diseases and longevity.
Klotho; Chromosome 13; High-density lipoprotein cholesterol; Total cholesterol; Fasting glucose; Fasting insulin; Insulin-like growth factor-1; Hemoglobin; Creatinine; Albumin; Lymphocytes
Cognition has already been considered as a component of frailty, and it has been demonstrated that it is associated with adverse health outcomes. We estimated the prevalence of frailty syndrome in an Italian older population and its predictive role on all-cause mortality and disability in nondemented subjects and in demented patients. We evaluated 2,581 individuals recruited from the Italian Longitudinal Study on Aging, a population-based sample of 5,632 subjects, aged 65–84 years old. Participants received identical baseline evaluation at the 1st survey (1992–1993) and were followed at 2nd (1995–1996) and 3rd survey (2000–2001). A phenotype of frailty according to partially modified measurement of Cardiovascular Health Study criteria was operationalized. The overall prevalence of frailty syndrome in this population-based study was 7.6% (95% confidence interval (CI) 6.55–8.57). Frail individuals noncomorbid or nondisable were 9.1% and 39.3%, respectively, confirming an overlap but not concordance in the co-occurrence among these conditions. Frailty was associated with a significantly increased risk of all-cause mortality over a 3-year follow-up (hazard ratio (HR) 1.98, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.52–2.60) and over a 7-year follow-up (HR 1.74, 95% CI 1.44–2.16), but with significant increased risk of disability only over a 3-year follow-up (HR 1.32, 95% CI 1.06–1.86 over a 3-year follow-up and HR 1.16, 95% CI 0.88–1.56 over a 7-year follow-up). Frail demented patients were at higher risk of all-cause mortality over 3- (HR 3.33, 95% CI 1.28–8.29) and 7-year follow-up periods (HR 1.89, 95% CI 1.10–3.44), but not of disability. Frailty syndrome was a short-term predictor of disability in nondemented older subjects and short- and long-term predictor of all-cause mortality in nondemented and demented patients.
Frailty; All-cause mortality; Dementia; Disability; Alzheimer’s disease
Apolipoprotein E (APOE) dependent lifetime risks (LTRs) for Alzheimer Disease (AD) are currently not accurately known and odds ratios (ORs) alone are insufficient to assess these risks. We calculated AD lifetime risk in 7,351 cases and 10,132 controls from Caucasian ancestry using Rochester (USA) incidence data. At the age of 85 the LTR of AD without reference to APOE genotype was 11% in males and 14% in females. At the same age, this risk ranged from 51% for APOE44 male carriers to 60% for APOE44 female carriers, and from 23% for APOE34 male carriers to 30% for APOE34 female carriers, consistent with semi-dominant inheritance of a moderately penetrant gene. Using PAQUID (France) incidence data, estimates were globally similar except that at age 85 the LTRs reached 68% and 35 % for APOE 44 and APOE 34 female carriers, respectively. These risks are more similar to those of major genes in Mendelian diseases, such as BRCA1 in breast cancer, than those of low-risk common alleles identified by recent GWAS in complex diseases. In addition, stratification of our data by age- groups clearly demonstrates that APOE4 is a risk factor not only for late- onset but for early- onset AD as well. Together, these results urge a reappraisal of the impact of APOE in Alzheimer disease.
The association between angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) genotypes and functional decline in older adults remains controversial. To assess if ACE gene variations influences functional abilities at older age, the present study explored the association between the common ACE insertion/deletion (I/D) polymorphism and disability measured with activities of daily living (ADL) in hospitalized older patients. We analyzed the frequency of the ACE genotypes (I/I, I/D, and D/D) in a population of 2,128 hospitalized older patients divided according to presence or absence of ADL disability. Logistic regression analysis adjusted for possible confounding factors, identified an association between the I/I genotype with ADL disability (OR = 1.54, 95% CI 1.04–2.29). This association was significant in men (OR = 2.01, 95% CI 1.07–3.78), but not in women (OR = 1.36, 95% CI 0.82–2.25). These results suggested a possible role of the ACE polymorphism as a genetic marker for ADL disability in hospitalized older patients.
Angiotensin-converting enzyme; Disability; Aging; Hospitalized patients
Neprilysin (NEP), also known as membrane metalloendopeptidase (MME), is considered amongst the most important β-amyloid (Aβ)-degrading enzymes with regard to prevention of Alzheimer’s disease (AD) pathology. Variation in the NEP gene (MME) has been suggested as a risk factor for AD. We conducted a genetic association study of 7MME SNPs – rs1836914, rs989692, rs9827586, rs6797911, rs61760379, rs3736187, rs701109 - with respect to AD risk in a cohort of 1057 probable and confirmed AD cases and 424 age-matched non-demented controls from the United Kingdom, Italy and Sweden. We also examined the association of these MME SNPs with NEP protein level and enzyme activity, and on biochemical measures of Aβ accumulation in frontal cortex – levels of total soluble Aβ, oligomeric Aβ1-42, and guanidine-extractable (insoluble) Aβ – in a sub-group of AD and control cases with post-mortem brain tissue. On multivariate logistic regression analysis one of the MME variants (rs6797911) was associated with AD risk (P = 0.00052, Odds Ratio (O.R. = 1.40, 95% confidence interval (1.16-1.70)). None of the SNPs had any association with Aβ levels; however, rs9827586 was significantly associated with NEP protein level (p=0.014) and enzyme activity (p=0.006). Association was also found between rs701109 and NEP protein level (p=0.026) and a marginally non-significant association was found for rs989692 (p=0.055). These data suggest that MME variation may be associated with AD risk but we have not found evidence that this is mediated through modification of NEP protein level or activity.
Neprilysin; MME; gene; association; β-Amyloid; alzheimer disease; polymorphism
Frailty is a dynamic age-related condition of increased vulnerability characterized by declines across multiple physiologic systems and associated with an increased risk of death. We compared the predictive accuracy for one-month and one-year all-cause mortality of four frailty instruments in a large population of hospitalized older patients in a prospective multicentre cohort study.
Methods and Findings
On 2033 hospitalized patients aged ≥65 years from twenty Italian geriatric units, we calculated the frailty indexes derived from the Study of Osteoporotic Fractures (FI-SOF), based on the cumulative deficits model (FI-CD), based on a comprehensive geriatric assessment (FI-CGA), and the Multidimensional Prognostic Index (MPI). The overall mortality rates were 8.6% after one-month and 24.9% after one-year follow-up. All frailty instruments were significantly associated with one-month and one-year all-cause mortality. The areas under the receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curves estimated from age- and sex-adjusted logistic regression models, accounting for clustering due to centre effect, showed that the MPI had a significant higher discriminatory accuracy than FI-SOF, FI-CD, and FI-CGA after one month (areas under the ROC curves: FI-SOF = 0.685 vs. FI-CD = 0.738 vs. FI-CGA = 0.724 vs. MPI = 0.765, p<0.0001) and one year of follow-up (areas under the ROC curves: FI-SOF = 0.694 vs. FI-CD = 0.729 vs. FI-CGA = 0.727 vs. MPI = 0.750, p<0.0001). The MPI showed a significant higher discriminatory power for predicting one-year mortality also in hospitalized older patients without functional limitations, without cognitive impairment, malnourished, with increased comorbidity, and with a high number of drugs.
All frailty instruments were significantly associated with short- and long-term all-cause mortality, but MPI demonstrated a significant higher predictive power than other frailty instruments in hospitalized older patients.
The most common apolipoprotein E (APOE) allelic variation is implicated in many age-related diseases and human longevity with controversial findings. We investigated the effect of APOE gene polymorphism on all-cause mortality in elderly patients taking into consideration the functional disability, cognitive impairment, malnutrition, and the occurrence of common age-related diseases. APOE genotypes were determined in 2,124 geriatric hospitalized patients (46.5% men and 53.5% women; mean age, 78.2 ± 7.1 years; range, 65–100 years). At hospital admission, all patients underwent a comprehensive geriatric assessment to evaluate functional disability, cognitive status, nutritional status, and comorbidity. The main and secondary diagnoses at hospital discharge were also recorded. Mortality status was evaluated in all patients after a maximum follow-up of 5 years (range, from 1.26 to 5.23 years; median, 2.86 years). During the study period, 671 patients died (32.0%). At hospital admission, these patients showed a significant higher prevalence of cardiovascular diseases (56.3% vs 53.4%; p = 0.007), neoplasias (32.3% vs 13.7%; p < 0.001), and lower prevalence of neurodegenerative diseases (17.7% vs 20.7%; p < 0.001) than survived patients. Moreover, they also showed an higher prevalence of disability (52.0% vs 25.6%; p < 0.001), cognitive impairment (31.0% vs 18.8%; p < 0.001), and malnutrition (74.0% vs 46.1%; p < 0.001) than survived patients. In the overall study population, the APOE ε2 allele was significantly associated to neurodegenerative diseases (odds ratio = 0.59; 95% confidence interval (CI), 0.37–0.94). No significant association between the APOE polymorphism and disability, malnutrition, co-morbidity status, and with all-cause mortality was observed. In patients with cardiovascular diseases, however, a decreased risk of all-cause mortality was found in the ε2 allele carriers (hazard ratio = 0.56; 95% CI, 0.36–0.88). In this population, APOE allele variants might play a role on cardiovascular disease-related mortality.
Apolipoprotein E; Mortality; Cardiovascular aging; Dementia
This case report describes a patient with nocturnal bruxism and related neck pain treated with botulinum toxin type A (BTX-A).
The patient was a 27-year-old man with nocturnal bruxism and difficulty in active mouth opening and chewing and neck pain at rest. His numeric pain score was 7 of 10. Surface electromyography of the temporalis and masseter muscles showed typical signs of hyperactivity, characterized by compound muscle action potential amplitude alterations.
Intervention and Outcome
After clinical evaluation, he was treated with BTX-A to reduce masseter and temporalis muscle hyperactivity. After 3 days of treatment with BTX-A, with each masseter muscle injected with a dose of about 40 mouse units with a dilution of 1 mL and with temporal muscle bilaterally injected with 25 mouse units with the same dilution, a decrease in bruxism symptoms was reported. Neck pain also decreased after the first treatment (visual analog scale of 2/10) and then resolved completely. After 4 weeks, electromyography showed the reduction of muscle hyperactivity with a decrease in the amplitude of the motor action potential. The same reduction in signs and symptoms was still present at assessment 3 months posttreatment.
These findings suggest that BTX-A may be a therapeutic option for the treatment of bruxism and related disorders.
EES: bruxism; Neck pain; Botulinum toxin type A
Neuropsychiatric symptoms, previously denominated as behavioural and psychological symptoms of dementia, are common features of Alzheimer's disease (AD) and are one of the major risk factors for institutionalization. At present, the role of the apolipoprotein E (APOE) gene in the development of neuropsychiatric symptoms in AD patients is unclear. In this paper, we summarized the findings of the studies of neuropsychiatric symptoms and neuropsychiatric syndromes/endophenotypes in AD in relation to APOE genotypes, with special attention to the possible underlying mechanisms. While some studies failed to find a significant association between APOE and neuropsychiatric symptoms in late-onset AD, other studies reported a significant association between the APOE ε4 allele and an increase in agitation/aggression, hallucinations, delusions, and late-life depression or anxiety. Furthermore, some negative studies that focused on the distribution of APOE genotypes between AD patients with or without neuropsychiatric symptoms further emphasized the importance of subgrouping neuropsychiatric symptoms in distinct neuropsychiatric syndromes. Explanations for the variable findings in the existing studies included differences in patient populations, differences in the assessment of neuropsychiatric symptomatology, and possible lack of statistical power to detect associations in the negative studies.
Recent findings on the antioxidant effects of pretreatment with α-lipoic acid (α-LA) on the crush injury of rat sciatic nerve confirm the possible usefulness of α-LA administration in humans with peripheral nerve injuries. We discussed this issue in relation with our recent results in which the combined employment of α-LA and γ-linolenic acid with a rehabilitation program for six weeks reduced sensory symptoms and neuropathic pain in patients with compressive radiculopathy syndrome from disc-nerve root conflict in comparison with patients submitted to rehabilitation program alone for six weeks.
Aim of this study was to evaluate the usefulness of a Multidimensional Prognostic Index (MPI) based on a Comprehensive Geriatric Assessment (CGA) for predicting mortality risk in older patients with dementia. The present was a retrospective study with a year of follow-up that included 262 patients aged 65 years and older with a diagnosis of dementia. A standardized CGA that included information on clinical, cognitive, functional, and nutritional aspects, as well as comorbidity, medications, and social support network, was used to calculate MPI. The predictive value of the MPI for all-cause mortality over 1 month, 6 months, and 12 months of follow-up was evaluated. Higher MPI values were significantly associated with higher mortality at 1 month (MPI-1, low risk = 0%, MPI-2, moderate risk = 5.2%, MPI-3, severe risk = 13.7%; p < 0.002), 6-months (MPI-1 = 2.7%, MPI-2 = 11.2%, MPI-3 = 28.8%; p < 0.001), and 12-months (MPI-1 = 2.7%, MPI-2 = 18.2%, MPI-3 = 35.6%; p < 0.001) of follow-up. The discrimination of the MPI was also good, with areas under the ROC curves of 0.77 (sensitivity = 82.9%, specificity = 66.0%, with a cut off value > 0.16) at 12-months of follow up. In conclusion, the MPI, calculated from information collected in a standardized CGA, accurately stratified hospitalized elderly patients with dementia into groups at varying risk of short- and long-term mortality.
Comprehensive Geriatric Assessment (CGA); dementia; mortality; Multidimensional Prognostic Index (MPI); prognosis; survival
Alzheimer's disease (AD) is characterised by the extensive deposition of amyloid beta (Aβ) within the parenchyma and vasculature of the brain. It is hypothesised that a dysfunction in Aβ degradation and/or its removal from the brain may result in accumulation as plaques. Low density lipoprotein receptor-related protein-1 (LRP-1) is a multifunctional receptor shown to be involved in cholesterol metabolism but also the removal of Aβ from the brain. Its ability to transport Aβ from the brain to the periphery has made it an attractive candidate for involvement in Alzheimer's disease (AD). We have assessed the frequencies of 9 tag- SNPs and the commonly studied synonymous SNP within exon 3 (rs1799986) in a multi-centre AD/control cohort and performed haplotype analysis. We found no evidence from a combined total of 412 controls and 1057 AD patients to support the involvement of LRP-1 variation, including the most commonly studied variant in rs1799986 in conferring genetic susceptibility to increased risk of AD.
LRP-1; Alzheimer's disease; association analysis
Several epidemiological studies suggest that long-term use of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) may protect subjects carrying one or more ε4 allele of the apolipoprotein E (APOE ε4) against the onset of Alzheimer's disease (AD). The biological mechanism of this protection is not completely understood and may involve the anti-inflammatory properties of NSAIDs or their ability of interfering with the β-amyloid (Aβ) cascade. Unfortunately, long-term, placebo-controlled clinical trials with both non-selective and cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) selective inhibitors in mild-to-moderate AD patients produced negative results. A secondary prevention study with rofecoxib, a COX-2 selective inhibitor, in patients with mild cognitive impairment was also negative. A primary prevention study (ADAPT trial) of naproxen (a non-selective COX inhibitor) and celecoxib (a COX-2 selective inhibitor) in cognitively normal elderly subjects with a family history of AD was prematurely interrupted for safety reasons after a median period of treatment of 2 years. Although both drugs did not reduce the incidence of dementia after 2 years of treatment, a 4-year follow-up assessment surprisingly revealed that subjects previously exposed to naproxen were protected from the onset of AD by 67% compared to placebo. Thus, it could be hypothesized that the chronic use of NSAIDs may be beneficial only in the very early stages of the AD process in coincidence of initial Aβ deposition, microglia activation and consequent release of pro-inflammatory mediators. When the Aβ deposition process is already started, NSAIDs are no longer effective and may even be detrimental because of their inhibitory activity on chronically activated microglia that on long-term may mediate Aβ clearance. The research community should conduct long-term trials with NSAIDs in cognitively normal APOE ε4 carriers.
Alzheimer's disease; non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs; β-amyloid; microglia