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Depression Research and Treatment
Volume 2011, Article ID 396958, 6 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2011/396958
Clinical Study

Depressive Symptom Clusters and Neuropsychological Performance in Mild Alzheimer's and Cognitively Normal Elderly

1Institute of Aging and Alzheimer's Disease Research, University of North Texas Health Sciences Center, Fort Worth, TX 76107, USA
2Department of Psychiatry, University of North Texas Health Sciences Center, Fort Worth, TX 76107, USA
3F. Marie Hall Institute for Rural and Community Health, Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center, Lubbock, TX 79415, USA
4Department of Neurology, Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center, Lubbock, TX 79415, USA
5Laura W. Bush Institute for Women's Health, Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center, Amarillo, TX 79106, USA
6Department of Family and Community Medicine, Texas Tech University Health Science Center, Lubbock, TX 79415, USA
7Department of Pharmacology and Neuroscience, University of North Texas Health Sciences Center, Fort Worth, TX 76107, USA

Received 12 January 2011; Accepted 5 July 2011

Academic Editor: Bernard Sabbe

Copyright © 2011 James R. Hall et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Objectives. Determine the relationship between depressive symptom clusters and neuropsychological test performance in an elderly cohort of cognitively normal controls and mild Alzheimer's disease (AD). Design. Cross-sectional analysis. Setting. Four health science centers in Texas. Participants. 628 elderly individuals (272 diagnosed with mild AD and 356 controls) from ongoing longitudinal study of Alzheimer's disease. Measurements. Standard battery of neuropsychological tests and the 30-item Geriatric Depression Scale with regressions model generated on GDS-30 subscale scores (dysphoria, apathy, meaninglessness and cognitive impairment) as predictors and neuropsychological tests as outcome variables. Follow-up analyses by gender were conducted. Results. For AD, all symptom clusters were related to specific neurocognitive domains; among controls apathy and cognitive impairment were significantly related to neuropsychological functioning. The relationship between performance and symptom clusters was significantly different for males and females in each group. Conclusion. Findings suggest the need to examine disease status and gender when considering the impact of depressive symptoms on cognition.