Alzheimer Disease in African American Individuals: Increased Incidence or Not Enough Data?

Research on racial differences in Alzheimer’s disease (AD) dementia has increased in recent years. Older African American individuals bear a disproportionate burden of AD and cognitive impairment compared with non-Latino white individuals. Tremendous progress has been made over the past two decades in our understanding of the neurobiological substrates of AD. The author identifies three key obstacles to progress in understanding racial differences in AD: uncertainty about diagnostic criteria, disparate cross-sectional and longitudinal findings; and a dearth of neuropathological data. 

Why This is Important: The research on understanding and treatment for Alzheimer’s is extremely robust and encouraging. However, gathering data on how the disease presents and is best managed in African Americans is a challenge. I believe that we need to do a better job of explaining the clinical presentation of Alzheimer’s disease to our community and the progress medical science is making in treating this pervasive problem. This will increase the number of Black Americans.

Abstract/Full Text

Read More About Neurology