People with type 2 diabetes are at increased risk of developing dementia compared to the general population. In recent years, many have been concerned that depression may be a risk factor for dementia. As a result, researchers looked at whether depression might also explain why dementia is more common in people with type 2 diabetes (T2D). They also looked at whether inflammation plays a role. In this study, researchers followed more than a thousand older men and women with T2D for 10 years to look at how many developed dementia. When the participants entered the study in 2006 – 2007, they took blood samples for measurements of inflammation and also measured rates of depression. They found that around 1 in 10 individuals developed dementia over the following ten years, and that depression was an important risk factor. For example, people with T2D have a 2.5 fold increase in developing dementia compared to people without T2D. Additionally, researchers found that markers of inflammation are raised in people with T2D with depression, but this was not necessarily linked to subsequent dementia. In conclusion, depression is an important risk factor for dementia in people with T2D. Some inflammatory markers were linked to depression, but systemic inflammation does not appear to impact the relationship between depression and dementia.
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