CONTEXT: Neurotoxic beta-amyloid accumulates in regions of the brain affected by advanced Alzheimer's disease. It is a suspected contributor to the development of the condition.
RESULTS: Dr. Jorge Barrio and researchers from the University of California, Los Angeles demonstrated that F-18 FDDNP microPET can visualize b-amyloid load in vivo in the brains of transgenic mice. Dynamic scans with the agent were performed on three experimental and two control animals. FDDNP uptake was elevated in the cerebral cortex, most prominently in the frontal lobe and hippocampal regions of the experimental transgenic mice (p = 0.001). Only background cortical binding was seen in control subjects. Results were consistent with previous in vitro results with b-amyloid neurofibrils and brain specimens of Alzheimer's disease patients. They were presented at the 2005 Academy of Molecular Imaging meeting.
IMPLICATIONS: The ability to quantify beta-amyloid plaque load could identify healthy adults who are suspicious for the future development of AD and could play a role in monitoring the effect of anti-amyloid therapies.