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, 11 (6), 593-9

Reactivated Herpes Simplex Infection Increases the Risk of Alzheimer's Disease

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Reactivated Herpes Simplex Infection Increases the Risk of Alzheimer's Disease

Hugo Lövheim et al. Alzheimers Dement.

Abstract

Background: Previous studies have suggested a link between herpes simplex virus (HSV) type 1 and the development of Alzheimer's disease (AD).

Methods: The present analysis included 3432 persons (53.9% women, mean age at inclusion 62.7 ± 14.4 years) with a mean follow-up time of 11.3 years. The number of incident AD cases was 245. Serum samples were analyzed for anti-HSV antibodies (immunoglobulin (Ig)G and IgM) by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays.

Results: The presence of anti-HSV IgG antibodies was not associated with an increased risk for AD, controlled for age and sex (hazard ratio, HR, 0.993, P = .979). However, the presence of anti-HSV IgM at baseline was associated with an increased risk of developing AD (HR 1.959, P = .012).

Conclusion: Positivity for anti-HSV IgM, a sign of reactivated infection, was found to almost double the risk for AD, whereas the presence of anti-HSV IgG antibodies did not affect the risk.

Keywords: Alzheimer's disease; Cohort study; Dementia; HSV; Herpes; Herpes simplex.

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