Alzheimer's gene unlocks potential key to delaying disease


Banner Alzheimer’s Institute’s Dr. Eric Reiman co-authored groundbreaking study


Researchers have discovered a rare genetic trait that could delay the onset of Alzheimer's in people who face an overwhelming risk of developing the mind-robbing disease.

Eric Reiman, MD, executive director at Banner Alzheimer’s Institute in Phoenix, co-authored the study of more than 1,000 members of an extended family in Colombia carrying a genetic mutation that puts them at near certain risk of developing early-onset Alzheimer's disease.

Published last week in The New England Journal of Medicine, the study reported that 27 people from this extended Colombian family who carried a genetic variant called Christchurch developed Alzheimer's disease several years later than expected. The findings build on early research in 2019 from a unique family predisposed to pass on the disease. The researchers found that a woman who had the same genetic trait delayed the onset of Alzheimer's by about three decades.

Scientists from Mass General Brigham believe the evidence could be used to develop an Alzheimer's drug or medication that replicates the protective effects of the Christchurch genetic variant.

To read the full article in USA Today, click here.

The New England Journal of Medicine research study can be found here.