Myeloperoxidase polymorphism and cognitive decline in older adults in the health, aging, and body composition study

Sandra K. Pope, Stephen B. Kritchevsky, Christine Ambrosone, Kristine Yaffe, Frances Tylavsky, Eleanor M. Simonsick, Caterina Rosano, Scott Stewart, Tamara Harris

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations


Myeloperoxidase, an antimicrobial enzyme, produces oxidative free radicals. Rarely found in normal brain tissue, myeloperoxidase has been detected in microglia associated with Alzheimer's disease plaques. The authors examined a G-463A polymorphism in the promoter region of the myeloperoxidase gene (MPO) to determine the relation of MPO variants to cognitive decline over 4 years in a cohort of adults, aged 70-79 years at baseline (1997-1998), recruited from Memphis, Tennessee, and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, into the Health, Aging, and Body Composition Study. In this sample, 8% of the participants had the AA, 36.9% the AG, and 55.2% the GG genotype of MPO. The frequency of AA and AG genotypes was higher in Blacks than Whites (11.2% vs. 5.9%, and 44.1% vs. 32.9%, respectively). Multivariate logistic regression analyses showed that, for participants with the MPO AA genotype, cognitive decline was 1.58 (95% confidence interval: 1.07, 2.35) times more likely than for participants with the AG genotype and 1.96 (95% confidence interval: 1.33, 2.88) times more likely than for those with the GG genotype. Interactions between MPO and race, sex, or the apolipoprotein gene were not significant. In this sample, MPO AA, associated with decreased production of myeloperoxidase, was found to be a risk factor for cognitive decline.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1084-1090
Number of pages7
JournalAmerican journal of epidemiology
Issue number12
StatePublished - Jun 2006
Externally publishedYes


  • Cognition
  • Ethnic groups
  • Peroxidase
  • Polymorphism, genetic
  • Prospective studies

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Epidemiology


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