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Stages of Objective Memory Impairment System Predicts Cognitive Impairment

Nearly twofold higher risk for clinical progression seen for SOMI-1 and SOMI-2; nearly threefold higher risk seen for SOMI-3/4

By Elana Gotkine HealthDay Reporter

FRIDAY, April 21, 2023 (HealthDay News) — For cognitively normal individuals, the Stages of Objective Memory Impairment (SOMI) system predicts the transition to cognitive impairment, according to a study published online April 19 in Neurology.

Ellen Grober, Ph.D., from the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in Bronx, New York, and colleagues determined SOMI stage among 969 cognitively normal individuals. Of these, 555 had cerebrospinal fluid and structural magnetic resonance imaging measures and comprised a biomarker subgroup; 144 were amyloid-positive.

The researchers found that compared with those who were SOMI-0 (no memory impairment), participants in SOMI-1 (subtle retrieval impairment) to 4 (storage impairment) had elevated hazard ratios for the transition from normal to impaired cognition. Compared with those with no memory problems, individuals in SOMI-1 (mildly impaired retrieval) and SOMI-2 (moderately impaired retrieval) had a nearly twofold higher risk for clinical progression. The hazard ratio for clinical progression was about threefold higher when memory storage impairment emerged (SOMI-3/4). After adjustment for all biomarkers, SOMI stage remained an independent predictor of incident cognitive impairment.

“Our results support the use of the SOMI system to identify people most likely to develop cognitive impairment,” Grober said in a statement. “Detecting cognitive impairment at its earliest stages is beneficial to researchers investigating treatments. It also could benefit those people who are found to be at increased risk by consulting with their physician and implementing interventions to promote healthy brain aging.”

Several authors disclosed financial ties to the pharmaceutical and publishing industries.

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