Scientists discovered two new genes related to Alzheimer's disease.

POSTED: Tuesday, September 8, 2009 - 8:23am

UPDATED: Thursday, February 25, 2010 - 11:33am

A team of scientists discovered two new genes related to the most common form of Alzheimer's disease.

It's considered by many experts to be one of the biggest genetic discoveries in the field in more than 15 years. The researchers found the genetic variants after pooling DNA samples from more than 16,000 people in Europe and the U.S., before now, only one gene had been identified as a risk factor for late onset Alzheimer's disease.

The team pinpointed 13 other variants that bear further scrutiny and in a separate study, also published in Nature Genetics discovered a third gene. Researchers say all of this could someday lead to new treatments for the disease.

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