Cholesterol and cognitive performance in normal controls and the influence of elective statin use after conversion to mild cognitive impairment: Results in a clinical trial cohort

D. Larry Sparks, Richard J. Kryscio, Donald J. Connor, Marwan N. Sabbagh, Lisa M. Sparks, Yushun Lin, Carolyn Liebsack

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

40 Scopus citations

Abstract

Background: We reported a significant 67% reduction in the hazard risk of incident Alzheimer's disease (AD) with elective statin use in the AD Anti-inflammatory Prevention Trial (ADAPT), without a reduction in risk of incident mild cognitive impairment (MCI). Objective: To assess if cholesterol levels are associated with cognitive performance and determine if statin use alters cognitive performance after onset of MCI. Design: Fractionated cholesterol levels, neurological and cognitive status were evaluated annually. Comparisons of non-LLA (lipid-lowering agent) users or statin-LLA users were performed blind to the ADAPT medication randomization. Pearson's correlations were validated using a time-dependent linear mixed model. Results: The MMSE performance significantly declined over time in non-LLA users, and, after adjusting for this, a significant positive correlation between MMSE and HDL was identified (p = 0.0002). A negative correlation between total and LDL cholesterol, and immediate and delayed recall of the Rivermead paragraph was significant (total cholesterol, p < 0.003; LDL, p < 0.02). Pilot data suggest a positive signal on delayed recall of both the Hopkins word list and Rivermead paragraph with deterioration in the non-LLA users and improvement in the statin users after conversion to MCI. Conclusion: Cholesterol levels may be associated with differential performance on the MMSE and measures of learning or memory. The trend for improved delayed recall in statin users with MCI compared to non-LLA users with MCI may have contributed to the reduced hazards risk of incident AD without reducing the risk of MCI.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)183-186
Number of pages4
JournalNeurodegenerative Diseases
Volume7
Issue number1-3
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 2010

Keywords

  • Alzheimer's disease
  • Cholesterol
  • Lipid-lowering agents
  • Mild cognitive impairment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology

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