Familial Aggregation of Alzheimer's Disease among Whites, African Americans, and Carribean Hispanics in Northern Manhattan

Devi, Gayatri; Ottman, Ruth; Tang, Mingxin; Marder, Karen; Stern, Yaakov; Mayeux, Richard Paul

Background Alzheimer disease (AD) aggregates in families. Objective To compare the familial aggregation and lifetime risk of AD to the age of 90 years in the first-degree relatives of patients with AD and unrelated controls among Caribbean Hispanics, African Americans, and whites in Washington Heights, Manhattan, New York, NY. Methods Family history of AD and demographic information were obtained from informants of 435 patients with probable or possible AD concerning 1577 siblings and parents and from 1094 controls without dementia concerning 3952 siblings and parents. Results Lifetime risk of AD to the age of 90 years was 25.9% in relatives of patients and 19.1% in relatives of controls. Rate ratio (RR) for AD in relatives of patients compared with relatives of controls was 1.5 overall (95% confidence interval [CI], 1.2-1.9), and was greater for siblings (RR, 1.8; 95% CI, 1.2-2.5) than for parents (RR, 1.2; 95% CI, 0.9-1.8). Within ethnic groups, RR for AD among relatives was significantly elevated in whites (RR, 2.0; 95% CI, 1.2-3.3) and Hispanics (RR, 1.5; 95% CI, 1.1-2.1), but the difference did not reach statistical significance in African Americans (RR, 1.4; 95% CI, 0.7-2.7). Risk of AD was greater among relatives who were women compared with men (RR, 1.5; 95% CI, 1.2-1.9). Conclusions Familial aggregation of AD was increased among families of patients compared with those of controls in all 3 ethnic groups. Risk of AD was highest among siblings and women relatives.


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Archives of Neurology

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February 23, 2018