APOE genotype and cognition in healthy individuals at risk of Alzheimer's disease: A review
Murphy, Susannah E
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M. Clare O'Donoghue, Susannah E. Murphy, Giovanna Zamboni, Anna C. Nobre, Clare E. Mackay. APOE genotype and cognition in healthy individuals at risk of Alzheimer's disease: A review. Cortex Volume 104, July 2018, Pages 103-123.
APOE-ε4 is best known as a risk factor for Alzheimer's disease (AD). Consequently, there is considerable research interest in understanding whether APOE-ε4 influences cognition in healthy adults. Despite a substantial literature reporting effects of APOE genotype on cognition, findings are inconsistent. In particular, it is challenging to separate whether cognitive deficits in APOE-ε4 carriers reflect the influence of prodromal dementia pathology (“prodromal hypothesis”), or a direct contribution of APOE genotype to individual differences (“phenotype hypothesis”). Variable methodology across studies further complicates the issue. These challenges have limited what can be learnt about the processes underlying cognitive ageing and dementia by studying the influence of APOE genotype on cognition. In this review, we focus on the two compatible neurobiological mechanisms by which APOE genotype may influence cognition in healthy adults (prodromal and phenotype). We summarise the behavioural evidence for the influence of APOE on cognition in non-demented adults and explore key methodological challenges for disentangling the cognitive effects of different neurobiological mechanisms of APOE. Evidence suggests that at least some APOE-ε4 cognitive deficits are due to early AD pathology, whilst sensitive measures of cognition are beginning to reveal subtle cognitive differences between APOE genotypes in mid-adulthood, prior to the onset of the AD prodromal period. We conclude with recommendations for future research to investigate the cognitive consequences of neurobiological processes affected by APOE and maximise the translational potential of this research.
Published online at: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cortex.2018.03.025 This article is available under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). You may copy and distribute the article, create extracts, abstracts and new works from the article, alter and revise the article, text or data mine the article and otherwise reuse the article commercially (including reuse and/or resale of the article) without permission from Elsevier. You must give appropriate credit to the original work, together with a link to the formal publication through the relevant DOI and a link to the Creative Commons user license above. You must indicate if any changes are made but not in any way that suggests the licensor endorses you or your use of the work. Permission is not required for this type of reuse.