Relation of state Alzheimer’s prevalence to state resident Big Five personality in the USA

  • Stewart J. H. McCannEmail author


Research results with individuals as the analytical units linking Alzheimer’s disease risk to personality provided the foundation for the present study. Conducted from the geographical psychology perspective, the research determined relations between Alzheimer’s disease prevalence in each of the 50 American states in 2015 and the state modal Big Five personality profiles provided by a previous large-scale survey of 619,397 residents. Three state socioeconomic status (SES) elements, White population percent, urban population percent, health environment, and a health and disease composite served as statistical controls in some analyses. Higher neuroticism was associated significantly with greater Alzheimer’s prevalence. According to the Pearson correlation with no statistical controls, neuroticism accounted for 19.7% of the criterion variance. With the seven state demographic variables and the other four Big Five personality factors statistically controlled, partial correlation showed that neuroticism accounted for 27.1% of the variance, and multiple regression showed that neuroticism accounted for 14.5% of the variance. Extraversion accounted for 15.1% of the Alzheimer’s criterion variance according to the Pearson correlation but showed no significant association in the partial correlation or multiple regression analyses. Openness to experience, conscientiousness, and agreeableness did not relate to Alzheimer’s disease prevalence in the present nomothetic state-level research.


Alzheimer’s disease Neuroticism Extraversion Personality Health 


Compliance with Ethical Standards

The corresponding author states all ethical standards have been followed.

Ethical Approval

This article does not contain any studies with human participants performed by the author.

Informed Consent

Informed consent was not required for this study.

Conflict of Interest

The corresponding author declares that he has no conflict of interest.


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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PsychologyCape Breton UniversitySydneyCanada

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