Alzheimer’s Association and American College of Radiology Launch Major New PET Scans Study

Alzheimer’s Association and American College of Radiology Launch Major New PET Scans Study
The Alzheimer's Association and the American College of Radiology (ACR) have jointly announced the launch of new four-year research study that will determine the clinical usefulness of brain positron emission tomography (PET) in diagnosing Alzheimer's Disease (AD) and other dementias in certain instances where such scans can detect a core Alzheimer's disease characteristic. The Imaging Dementia Evidence for Amyloid Scanning (IDEAS) Study will have an estimated budget of $100 million. According to the Alzheimer Society of Canada, Beta amyloid protein in the brain is a defining feature of Alzheimer's disease, but the effects of beta amyloid on a persons brain and cognitive abilities are complex. For example, research has shown that up to a third of older people who have no cognitive problems also have beta amyloid accumulations in their brains, and beta amyloid can be present for years before dementia symptoms manifest. It also has not been established what proportion of otherwise healthy people with beta amyloid accretions in their brains will ultimately develop Alzheimer's disease. Technological advances over the past decade have enabled detection of beta amyloid deposits in the brain using sophisticated neuroimaging techniques. An example is the use of special tracers, which bind to beta amyloid, in conjunction with positron emission tomography (PET) to measure the amount of beta amyloid in an individual's brain. Amyloid imaging was approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 2012, and promises great potential as a tool for diagnosing various types of dementia
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