Alzheimer's Affects Twice As Many People As Estimated, And The Numbers Are Climbing, USC Alzheimer's Therapeutic Research Institute (ATRI) Study Reveals

Published: Jun 16, 2017

New research into the biomarkers that predict the onset of Alzheimer’s suggests that more than twice as many people are in some stage of the disease than the official numbers indicate. Roughly 5.4 million people in the US are estimated to have Alzheimer’s, but that number is likely closer to 11 million when including those who aren't yet symptomatic.

The study analyzed 10 years of data from the Alzheimer's Disease Neuroimaging Initiative, an effort focused on understanding the biomarkers that arise before symptomatic Alzheimer's begins. The most critical biomarker is an elevated level of amyloid beta, the toxic protein that accumulates as a plaque in the brains of Alzheimer’s patients. Most people with elevated amyloid levels who aren’t yet symptomatic will develop full-blown Alzheimer’s within 10 years.

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