Scientists in the US say they have identified genetic markers which could help to highlight which people are at risk of developing Alzheimer's disease in later life.
Research conducted at the Washington University School of Medicine and published in the Neuron journal, found that people who [have] high levels of tau proteins are at a greater risk of being diagnosed with the condition.
Dr Alison Goate, who led the study, said the team believe that identifying the role of these genes in Alzheimer's disease patients could lead to new therapies being developed.
Dr Doug Brown, director of research and development at the Alzheimer's Society, added: "Research such as this may, in the future, help us to engineer treatments aimed at stopping such changes and therefore slowing or stopping the effects of dementia."
However, he stated that lifestyle factors also play a big role in development of the conditions and that previous research has found that a balanced diet and regular exercise also lowers the risk of dementia.
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