At the Society for Neuroscience meeting last November in San Diego, the Alzheimer Research Forum reported on insulin-degrading enzyme as a potential risk factor for late-onset Alzheimer's disease (see news story and comment). This report is not born out by a paper published last month in Human Genetics. Richard Abraham et al. sequenced the gene region on chromosome 10 where the IDE gene resides and found eight single nucleotide polymorphisms. None of them changed the enzyme's amino acid sequence nor were any of them associated with AD when analyzed in several case-control samples from England and the U.S. "We conclude that IDE does not make a substantial contribution to the etiology of LOAD and therefore cannot account for the linkage between LOAD and 10q," the authors write.—Gabrielle Strobel
- Abraham R, Myers A, Wavrant-DeVrieze F, Hamshere ML, Thomas HV, Marshall H, Compton D, Spurlock G, Turic D, Hoogendoorn B, Kwon JM, Petersen RC, Tangalos E, Norton J, Morris JC, Bullock R, Liolitsa D, Lovestone S, Hardy J, Goate A, O'Donovan M, Williams J, Owen MJ, Jones L. Substantial linkage disequilibrium across the insulin-degrading enzyme locus but no association with late-onset Alzheimer's disease. Hum Genet. 2001 Dec;109(6):646-52. PubMed.