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Approved research

Dopamine-related polymorphisms in healthy memory and dementia

Principal Investigator: Dr John Grogan
Approved Research ID: 17708
Approval date: February 9th 2016

Lay summary

Several experiments have shown effects of differences in genes related to dopamine function in the brain can affect memory and learning, although the evidence is not always consistent, probably due to the small sample sizes used. We aim to use large sample sizes from cohorts to look at whether polymorphisms in genes related to dopamine affect memory, as well as dementia and Parkinson's disease incidence and age of onset. It would show whether genetic differences in dopaminergic function affected memory in healthy ageing, and in dementia. With the ageing population in the UK, dementia is a growing concern, as is memory decline in non-demented older adults. This could reveal whether genetic differences impact memory over age, or even increase the risk or progression of dementia. We will look for associations between individual genes and memory scores, as well as the change in scores over time, and dementia diagnoses and age of diagnosis. We shall use genome-wide association data for this, along with the data from the cognitive function & follow-up. full cohort