Sat, 19 Nov 2022 12:35 PM IST
LOVE AND Thor star, Chris Hemsworth announced taking a break from the film industry because of his health conditions. Recently, in the six-part National Geographic television series Limitless, the Thor star revealed that he is genetically predisposed to Alzheimer's disease. Best known for his role as Thor in Marvel films, the actor carries two copies of the gene APOE4, which studies link to a high risk of developing Alzheimer's disease.
APOE4 is known to be a risk factor gene because it tends to put a person at high risk of developing Alzheimer's disease. According to the Associate Professor of Neurology and Neurological Sciences and Director of Stanford Center for Memory Disorder, 15 per cent of healthy people have the APOE4 gene variant, it is present in more than 50 per cent of Alzheimer's patients. Read below to know about the causes, symptoms and high risk factors of this disease.
What is Alzheimer's ?
Alzheimer's disease is a progressive neurological disorder which causes the brain to shrink and brain cells to die. This further leads to a decline in an individual's ability of thinking, behavioural and social skills. It is a brain disorder that slowly destroys memory and thinking ability and difficulty in carrying out even the simplest tasks. It is one of the most common types of Dementia.
Risk Factors of Alzheimer's
Age is one of the most significant factors and the risk of this disease doubles every 5 years after you reach 65. Family history is another factor, some genes inherited from parents may contribute to a high risk of developing Alzheimer's. Other factors include head injuries, cardiovascular diseases such as diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, untreated depression, social isolation and lifestyle.
Numerous studies show that gene APOE4 carries a protein that carries cholesterol and other types of fat in the bloodstream which leads to problems with the brain cells' ability to process fats and lipids which play a key role in developing Alzheimer's and related diseases.
Symptoms of Alzheimer's
Mental decline, difficulty in thinking and understanding, disorientation, forgetfulness, inability to do simple maths, inability to create memories, mental confusion, asking questions frequently, misplacing items, having trouble thinking the right word, confusion in evening hours, making things up, aggression, meaningless repetition of own words, wandering or getting lost, loneliness, mood swings, depression, hallucinations and loss of appetite are some of the major symptoms of this disease.