Research carried out in the UK has shown that a gene linked to Alzheimer's could also promote better-than-average memory and verbal skills in youth.
A study led by the University of Sussex found that individuals with a particular gene variant, which is known as APOE e4, that is found in approximately 25 per cent of the population, performed better in attention tests.
Lead researcher Professor Jennifer Rusted said: "Earlier studies suggested that those with the e4 variant outperform those without it in tasks such as memory, speed of processing, mental arithmetic and verbal fluency."
However, those who have the APOE e4 variant are more likely to develop dementia later in their lives, it was noted by the study's authors.
Research conducted in the US recently found a link between the frailty of older adults and their likelihood of going on to develop dementia.
Find the nearest Barchester nursing home