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If you, or a loved one, have difficulty identifying common smells such as banana, cinnamon, or lemon, it might be a sign for the early onset of Alzheimer’s disease.

Dr. Robert S. Wilson, Rush University Medical Center, tested the sniffers of 589 adults (average age 80-years-old) who, at the time, showed no cognitive impairments. For 5 years they were retested. About 30% showed mild cognitive impairment.

Those that showed cognitive impairment also scored lower on the 12-item sniff test given at the beginning of the study. Wilson found a strong correlation between lower sniff test scores at beginning of the study and later signs of early onset of Alzheimer’s disease.

They have made available a list of Alzheimer’s Disease and Related Clinical Trials.