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Activity Number: 424
Type: Contributed
Date/Time: Tuesday, July 31, 2012 : 2:00 PM to 3:50 PM
Sponsor: Statistics in Mental Health Research
Abstract - #305946
Title: Impact of Biological Risk Factors of Cardiovascular Disease and Education on Cognitive Trajectories in Non-Demented Older Adults
Author(s): Shelley Han Liu*+ and Maritza Dowling
Companies: Harvard University and University of Wisconsin-Madison
Address: 655 Huntington Avenue, Boston, MA, 02115, United States
Keywords: Dementia ; Alzheimer's Disease ; Propensity scores ; Growth mixture models

Data from a large prospective longitudinal study was used to estimate propensity scores (PS) of dementia risk for older adults clinically diagnosed as cognitively normal at baseline. PS were estimated as a function of age, education, gender, APOEe4, blood pressure, diabetes, BMI, physical activity, smoking, and depression. PS, estimated by maximum likelihood logistic regression, and demographic factors were further modeled as predictors of a composite score measuring global cognition. Growth mixture models were used to estimate latent classes with distinct cognitive trajectories over time. Two latent classes emerged for global cognition - one with a subtle decline and one with a faster decline over time. Older age, higher propensity scores, and gender were significantly associated with group membership in the faster decline group; while higher education level was associated with membership in the class with subtle decline. The study provides support for the protective role of education in mitigating cognitive decline for a group with a favorable cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk profile. Level of education, however, did not protect the latent group with a higher prevalence of CVD.

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