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OBJECTIVE: To determine whether individuals with Alzheimer's disease (AD) and the K variant allele of butyrylcholinesterase have a slower rate of cognitive decline than those without the K variant allele of butyrylcholinesterase. METHOD: The cognitive status of 339 community based subjects with AD was assessed with the Mini Mental State Examination at baseline and yearly over a three year follow up period. The rates of cognitive decline of subjects with and without the K variant allele were compared. RESULT: Presence of the K allele was associated with a slower average rate of cognitive decline in subjects with severe AD. CONCLUSIONS: This finding is consistent with the suggestion that the K variant of butyrylcholinesterase has an important role in disease progression in AD, and this may have implications for treatment.

Original publication




Journal article


J Neurol Neurosurg Psychiatry

Publication Date





640 - 643


Aged, Aged, 80 and over, Alleles, Alzheimer Disease, Butyrylcholinesterase, Cognition Disorders, Cohort Studies, Demography, Female, Genetic Variation, Genotype, Humans, Male, Neuropsychological Tests