Cerebral amyloid PET imaging in Alzheimer's disease

Clifford R. Jack, Jorge R. Barrio, Vladimir Kepe

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

71 Scopus citations

Abstract

The devastating effects of the still incurable Alzheimer's disease (AD) project an ever increasing shadow of burden on the health care system and society in general. In this ominous context, amyloid (Aβ) imaging is considered by many of utmost importance for progress towards earlier AD diagnosis and for potential development of effective therapeutic interventions. Amyloid imaging positron emission tomography procedures offer the opportunity for accurate mapping and quantification of amyloid-Aβ neuroaggregate deposition in the living brain of AD patients. This review analyzes the perceived value of current Aβ imaging probes and their clinical utilization and, based on amyloid imaging results, offers a hypothesis on the effects of amyloid deposition on the biology of AD and its progression. It also analyzes lingering questions permeating the field of amyloid imaging on the apparent contradictions between imaging results and known neuropathology brain regional deposition of Aβ aggregates. As a result, the review also discusses literature evidence as to whether brain Aβ deposition is truly visualized and measured with these amyloid imaging agents, which would have significant implications in the understanding of the biological AD cascade and in the monitoring of therapeutic interventions with these surrogate Aβ markers.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)643-657
Number of pages15
JournalActa neuropathologica
Volume126
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 2013

Keywords

  • Alzheimer's disease
  • Amyloid imaging
  • Florbetapir
  • Neuropathological correlations
  • Neuropathological diagnostic criteria
  • Pittsburgh Compound B

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience

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