Study Identifies Link between Chronic High Blood Pressure and Dementia/Dementia-Like Symptoms

December 5, 2023

A study supported by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) suggests that the response of immune system cells inside the protective covering surrounding the brain may contribute to dementia/dementia-like symptoms and cognitive decline in those with chronic high blood pressure.

Hypertension affects more than 1 billion people worldwide and can lead to a decline in cognitive function, including when a stroke occurs, but also when a person with high blood pressure does not suffer from a stroke. The findings from this study suggest that immune cells around and within the brain become abnormally activated under conditions that mimic a common form of hypertension, and this activation leads to impaired brain function.

Roderick Corriveau, PhD, Program Director for the NIH's National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS), was quoted in an NIH news release saying, "The role of immune signaling in cognitive decline is critically important to understand . . . These findings offer insight into how signaling from the immune system could contribute to symptoms of cognitive decline that ultimately result in dementia diagnoses."

Click here to access the relevant NIH news release for more information, and click here to access the study itself.

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