Abstract P045: Differential Associations of Inflammation and Cognitive Function in African and European Americans
Dementia affects approximately 5 million people in the United States and cost $183 billion in 2011, with African Americans (AA) experiencing a disproportionate burden of dementia compared to European Americans (EA). Inflammation is considered by many to be a potential mediator in the development of cognitive dysfunction. High sensitivity C-reactive protein (CRP) and tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α), increasingly measured by the soluble TNF receptors 1 & 2 (sTNFRI1, sTNFR2), are among the most frequently cited inflammatory markers associated with dementia and are also elevated in vascular disease. Few studies have compared associations of inflammatory markers with cognitive function in EA and AA. We examined the association of CRP, sTNFR1 and sTNFR2 with cognitive function using detailed neuropsychological assessments in the Genetic Epidemiology Network of Arteriopathy (GENOA)-Genetics of Microangiopathic Brain Injury (GMBI) participants, a cohort considered at high risk of vascular disease due to family history (> 2 individuals in sibships with hypertension at age <60 years) and high prevalence rates of hypertension (74%), diabetes (27%), and obesity (51%). Cognitive function was measured across 5 cognitive domains: global cognitive function, processing speed, language, memory, and executive function. In AA, higher sTNFR2 was associated with poorer performance across all five domains. Higher sTNFR1 and CRP were associated with slower processing speed. In EA, higher sTNFR1 was associated with slower processing speed. CRP and sTNFR2 were not associated with cognitive function in EA. Inflammatory markers in this cohort were associated differentially across cognitive domains in AA and EA, and may reflect racial differences in vascular responses to inflammation.
- © 2013 by American Heart Association, Inc.