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Impact of glucose on risk of dementia: Mendelian randomisation studies in 115,875 individuals – published online 14/03/2020

Marianne Benn, Børge G. Nordestgaard, Anne Tybjærg-Hansen, Ruth Frikke-Schmidt

Observational studies have reported an increased risk of dementia in individuals with diabetes mellitus, but it is not known whether high plasma glucose has a causal impact on risk of dementia. In this issue, Benn et al ( used Mendelian randomisation with data from 115,875 individuals from the Danish general population to examine this. The authors found that a 1 mmol/l higher plasma glucose level was associated with a 2.4-fold higher risk of unspecified dementia, but did not increase the risk of Alzheimer’s disease or vascular dementia. The authors state that the finding that high plasma glucose is causally related to the risk of unspecified dementia underscores the importance of glycaemic control in individuals with diabetes mellitus and, potentially, also in those with impaired glucose tolerance.

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