Examining the Association Between Cytomegalovirus and Disability by Race/Ethnicity and Gender
Grace Noppert1, Kate Duchowny2
1University of Michigan, 2University of California, San Francisco

Recent studies have documented a decline in the overall prevalence of disability in the United States, however racial/ethnic and gender disparities continue to persist. Cytomegalovirus (CMV) may be a key mechanism in understanding these previously documented disparities. Using data from the Health and Retirement Study, we employed Poisson log-binomial models to estimate the prevalence of disability comparing CMV seropositive versus seronegative adults in race/ethnicity, gender stratified models. Among the 9,029 participants, 63% were CMV seropositive and 15% were disabled. CMV seropositivity was highest among non-Hispanic Black (88%) and Hispanic adults (92%) compared to non-Hispanic White adults (57%). Compared to seronegative women, our results suggest a greater prevalence of disability among CMV seropositive Hispanic women (PR= 4.41) and non-Hispanic Black women (PR= 1.46). Among men, we found inconsistent associations between CMV and disability. Results provide suggestive evidence that CMV may be an important determinant of racial/ethnic and gender disparities in disability.