Influenza and pneumonia vaccinations correlated with a lower risk of Alzheimer’s disease in new research conducted by the Alzheimer’s Association.
According to researchers, one influenza vaccination was associated with a 17 percent lower risk of dementia, while frequent administration of influenza vaccination resulted in a 13 percent lower risk.
Pneumonia vaccinations, on the other end, reduced the risk of dementia by up to 40 percent among older adults, when individual genetic factors were taken into account.
The findings were the result of a thorough examination of an American health record dataset involving more than 9,000 individuals.
Based on their examination of the participants, an annual influenza vaccination lowered the risk of Alzheimer’s by nearly 6 percent for a span of 16 years.
Moreover, the participants who received their first vaccination at a younger age benefited more. But in light of these findings, researchers note that more studies should be initiated to examine the biological mechanism to this effect for new possible approaches to preventing Alzheimer’s disease.
“Vaccinations against pneumonia before age 75 may reduce Alzheimer’s risk later in life, depending on individual genotype,” said Svetlana Ukraintseva, co-author of the study. “These data suggest that pneumococcal vaccine may be a promising candidate for personalized Alzheimer’s prevention, particularly in non-carriers of certain risk genes.”
“More research is needed to explore the biological mechanism for this effect — why and how it works in the body — which is important as we explore effective preventive therapies for Alzheimer’s,” Ukraintseva concluded in a news release.