Exploring semantic verbal fluency patterns and their relationship to age and Alzheimer's disease in adults with Down syndrome

Farah Mgaieth*, Asaad Baksh, Carla Startin, Sarah Hamburg, Rosalyn Hithersay, Sarah Pape, Henrik Zetterberg, Nick Ashton, Miren Tamayo Elizalde, Fedal Saini, Mina Idris, Andre Strydom

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Introduction
Adults with Down syndrome (DS) are at ultra-high risk of developing Alzheimer's disease (AD), characterized by poor episodic memory and semantic fluency in the preclinical phase in the general population. We explored semantic fluency performance in DS and its relationship to age, AD, and blood biomarkers.

Methods
A total of 302 adults with DS at baseline and 87 at follow-up from the London Down Syndrome Consortium cohort completed neuropsychological assessments. Blood biomarkers were measured with the single molecule array technique in a subset of 94 participants.

Results
Poorer verbal fluency performance was observed as age increases. Number of correct words declined in those with AD compared to those without over 2 years and was negatively correlated with neurofilament light (r = –0.37, P = .001) and glial fibrillary acidic protein (r = –0.31, P = .012).

Discussion
Semantic fluency may be useful as an early indicator of cognitive decline and provide additional information on AD-related change, showing associations with biomarkers in DS.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5129-5137
Number of pages9
JournalAlzheimer's & Dementia
Volume19
Issue number11
Early online date28 Apr 2023
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2023

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