London: Having Alzheimer`s or cancer may lower the risk of developing the other disease, according to the largest study ever on the topic.Older people with Alzheimer`s disease are less likely to also have cancer, and older people with cancer are less likely to also have Alzheimer`s disease, researchers said."Since the number of cases of both Alzheimer`s disease and cancer increase exponentially as people age, understanding the mechanisms behind this relationship may help us better develop new treatments for both diseases," said study author Massimo Musicco, of the National Research Council of Italy in Milan.The study involved 204,468 people age 60 and older in northern Italy during a six-year period. During that time, 21,451 people developed cancer and 2,832 people developed Alzheimer`s disease.A total of 161 people had both cancer and Alzheimer`s disease, whereas that number would have been expected to be 281 for cancer and 246 for Alzheimer`s disease when considering how often the diseases occur in the general population.
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