Ethnicity/culture modulates the relationships of the haptoglobin (Hp) 1-1 phenotype with cognitive function in older individuals with type 2 diabetes

Elizabeth Guerrero-Berroa, Ramit Ravona-Springer, Anthony Heymann, James Schmeidler, Hadas Hoffman, Rachel Preiss, Keren Koifmann, Lior Greenbaum, Andrew Levy, Jeremy M. Silverman, Derek Leroith, Mary Sano, Michal Schnaider-Beeri

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Objective The haptoglobin (Hp) genotype has been associated with cognitive function in type 2 diabetes. Because ethnicity/culture has been associated with both cognitive function and Hp genotype frequencies, we examined whether it modulates the association of Hp with cognitive function. Methods This cross-sectional study evaluated 787 cognitively normal older individuals (>65 years of age) with type 2 diabetes participating in the Israel Diabetes and Cognitive Decline study. Interactions in two-way analyses of covariance compared Group (Non-Ashkenazi versus Ashkenazi Jews) on the associations of Hp phenotype (Hp 1-1 versus non- Hp 1-1) with five cognitive outcome measures. The primary control variables were age, gender, and education. Results Compared with Ashkenazi Jews, non-Ashkenazi Jews with the Hp 1-1 phenotype had significantly poorer cognitive function than non-Hp 1-1 in the domains of Attention/Working Memory (p = 0.035) and Executive Function (p = 0.023), but not in Language/Semantic Categorization (p = 0.432), Episodic Memory (p = 0.268), or Overall Cognition (p = 0.082). After controlling for additional covariates (type 2 diabetes-related characteristics, cardiovascular risk factors, Mini-mental State Examination, and extent of depressive symptoms), Attention/Working Memory (p = 0.038) and Executive Function (p = 0.013) remained significant. Conclusions Older individuals from specific ethnic/cultural backgrounds with the Hp 1-1 phenotype may benefit more from treatment targeted at decreasing or halting the detrimental effects of Hp 1-1 on the brain. Future studies should examine differential associations of Hp 1-1 and cognitive impairment, especially for groups with high prevalence of both, such as African-Americans and Hispanics.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)494-501
Number of pages8
JournalInternational Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry
Volume31
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 May 2016

Keywords

  • cognitive domains
  • cognitive function
  • diabetes
  • ethnicity/culture
  • haptoglobin
  • older adults

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