Why does Alzheimer's affect women more?

For example, more women develop depression and depressive mood has been linked to the onset of the disease Alzheimer's. Other risk factors only affect women, such as surgical menopause and pregnancy complications such as preclaimsia, which have been associated with cognitive decline in their lives.

Social roles, such as caring, can also increase the possibility of developing dementia.

Research is being done into whether a carer is in itself a risk factor for Alzheimer's disease, explains Annemarie Schumacher, a health psychologist.. In the United Kingdom, between 60-70% of unpaid caregivers who care for someone with dementia are women.

The Women & # 39; s Brain Project group (WPB), co-financed by Santuccione-Chadha, Ferretti and Schumacher as well as by chemist Gautam Maitra, he has just published a report in which he analyzes the scientific literature of a decade on Alzheimer's disease.

For the elaboration of the study, the existing data were revised and the scientists were asked to stratify them for the first time according to gender.

"The most obvious differences seen in the literature are the appearance and progression of cognitive and psychiatric symptoms between men and women with Alzheimer's disease.On the basis of these new studies we can design new hypotheses and new ways to improve the treatment of Alzheimer's disease. says Ferretti.

Scientists hope that new, gender-discriminated research will help develop more effective treatments for patients.

Currently, for example, Alzheimer's disease is detected by looking for two toxic proteins that accumulate in the brain. The evidence suggests that there is no difference in the levels of these proteins, or biomarkers, in men and women with Alzheimer's disease. But women show a greater cognitive decline.

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