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Letters to the Editor
March 2002

Apolipoprotein E ϵ4 Allele and Clinically Defined Vascular Depression

Arch Gen Psychiatry. 2002;59(3):290-291. doi:

It has been suggested that cerebrovascular disease may favor the development of late-onset depression, and that the particular forms of vascular depression should be individualized.1,2 This suggestion was supported by studies reporting an association between clinically defined vascular risk factors and depression,1 as well as by the frequent occurrence of silent stroke and white matter changes detected by neuroimaging in late-onset depression.2 However, the role of the polymorphism of apolipoprotein E (APOE) in the emergence of vascular depression is still unknown. The APOEϵ4 allele (APOEϵ4) was shown to be a risk factor for Alzheimer disease (AD),3 but the association of this allele with depression46 or with cerebrovascular disease7,8 remains controversial. The objective of the present study was, therefore, to clarify the relationship between APOEϵ4 and vascular depression.

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