Inverse relationship between education and parietotemporal perfusion deficit in Alzheimer's disease

Yaakov Stern, Gene E. Alexander, Isak Prohovnik, Richard Mayeux

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

424 Scopus citations


A higher prevalence of dementia in individuals with fewer years of education has suggested that education may protect against Alzheimer's disease (AD). We tested whether individuals with more years of education have a more advanced AD before it is clinically evident. As a measure of pathophysiological severity, we quantified regional cerebral blood flow (rCBF), by the 133Xenon inhalation technique; a specific pattern of flow reduction in the parietotemporal cortex corresponds to AD pathology. In 3 groups of patients with probable AD, matched for clinical measures of dementia severity but with varying levels of education, whole‐cortex mean flows were comparable. However, the parietotemporal perfusion deficit was significantly greater in the group with the highest level of education, indicating that AD was more advanced in this group. We conclude that education or its covariates or both may provide a reserve that compensates for the neuropathological changes of AD and delays the onset of its clinical manifestations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)371-375
Number of pages5
JournalAnnals of Neurology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 1992

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology


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