November 2016

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Alzheimer’s Genes and Family History

Do you wonder if Alzheimer’s disease runs in your family? If a grandparent, parent, aunt, or uncle has had Alzheimer’s, will you have it, too?

NIH’s new easy-to-read booklet, Understanding Alzheimer’s Genes: Know Your Family History, can help you answer these and other questions. The publication describes what genes are, how they relate to Alzheimer’s disease, and what it means if you have a family history of the disease.

Genes contain information passed down from your parents. They affect many aspects of your health, including your likelihood of developing Alzheimer’s. Your chance of getting the disease may be higher if you have certain variant genes. However, having a parent with Alzheimer’s disease doesn’t always mean that you’ll develop it.

This 20-page booklet has tips for creating a family health history and joining a clinical trial or research registry. It also provides steps you can take if you’re at increased risk for Alzheimer’s disease.

Go to www.nia.nih.gov/alzheimers/publication/understanding-alzheimers-genes to view the booklet online or to order a free print copy. Or call 1-800-438-4380 to learn more.