- Alzheimer’s disease is the commonest form of dementia, affecting more than 6 million people in the United States.
- Early diagnosis is key to managing the disease, but initial symptoms, such as memory issues, are often dismissed as normal signs of aging.
- A new study has found that carriers of the APOE ε4 gene, who are at higher risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease, may lose their ability to identify odors earlier than those who do not carry the gene variant.
- As this impaired sense of smell may be an early sign of future cognitive problems, testing people’s sense of smell could help identify those at greater risk of Alzheimer’s.
By Katharine Lang on July 29, 2023
Fact checked by Jill Seladi-Schulman, Ph.D.
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