Chris Hemsworth Alzheimer’s and Genetic Predisposition: Here’s What He Really Has

The actor, known for his role as Thor, has announced a hiatus from film after the discovery. He is not sick and has no symptoms, but let’s see what it means to have a genetic predisposition to Alzheimer’s disease

Vera Martinella

At 39, Chris Hemsworth took a break from filmmaking after discovering a “predisposition to Alzheimer’s disease.” the actor the hero of the story ox and extractone of Hollywood’s most beloved stars, in an interview with Vanity Fair He is going to stop acting for a while so he can go home and spend more time with his wife and kids. Hemsworth is not one Alzheimer’s disease diagnosis No certainty of future disease progression, but only Information about its DNA composition This makes him more likely than others to develop the disease in the future.

The willingness of the actor

As the actor himself explained, from the genetic tests carried out for the docuseries no limits It has been shown that the composition of his DNA includes Two copies of the APOE4 gene, one from the mother and the other from the father, and several scientific studies have linked it to an increased risk of Alzheimer’s disease. according to stats, One in four people carries one copy of the genebut based on a 2021 US National Institutes of Health survey Only 2-3% of the population has both Thus, he sees that the chances of facing the most common form of dementia increase dramatically.

Damage caused by Alzheimer’s disease

Alzheimer’s disease is a neurodegenerative disease that progressively kills nerve cells, especially those in the brain Areas of the brain that regulate learning and memory. In the world it affects about 40 million people alone In Italy there are about a million casesfor the most part over 60. “The progression of the disease can have completely different times, making the patient less and less able to perform even the simplest daily actions, depriving him of his independence, not even recognizing his family – he explains Alfredo Berardelli, President of the Italian Society of Neurology (SIN) And Professor of Neurology, Sapienza University, Rome -. The brain is damaged at different levels: in addition to the degeneration of neurons, the state of encephalitis is also determined. The main symptoms of patients with this disease are at the beginning Short term memory loss“.

Increased cases and symptoms

Over the age of 80, the disease affects one in four elderly people The numbers are expected to increase due to the gradual aging of the population, particularly in developing countries. Alzheimer’s is one Sneaky disease Which silently enters people’s lives and then completely overwhelms them: it leads to Complete loss of autonomy In patients with a A big commitment from the family Which plays a very important role in ongoing care – Berardelli emphasizes. Alzheimer’s patients initially show symptoms such as: Memory deficits, especially of recent eventsand then speech disordersAnd the Loss of spatio-temporal orientationprogressive loss of independence in functions of daily living that we define as “mental illnessThey often join together afterwards psychological and behavioral problems, Such as depression, emotional incontinence, delusions, agitation, fussiness, which make it necessary to take care of the patient constantly, with a great burden on family members who play a very important role.

care and familiarity

Alzheimer’s disease is characterized by family formwhich depend on the presence of genetic mutations and represent about 10% of cases (generally appearing before 60-65 years of age), and dashed shape, responsible for the remaining 90% of cases Age remains the main risk factor. “Although it is not genetically induced, a familial predisposition has been detected – explains the head of the SIN -. Unfortunately, there is still no real and effective prevention and much is still being studied to find effective treatments. Medicines currently available I am able to Symptoms improve of disease and Temporarily slows down its progress. Other medications make it possible to control more disabling symptoms such as depression, sleep and behavioral disturbances (delusions, hallucinations, agitation), but much more needs to be done.”

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