Navigation Links
Atypical form of Alzheimer's disease may be present in a more widespread number of patients

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. Neuroscientists at Mayo Clinic in Florida have defined a subtype of Alzheimer's disease (AD) that they say is neither well recognized nor treated appropriately.

The variant, called hippocampal sparing AD, made up 11 percent of the 1,821 AD-confirmed brains examined by Mayo Clinic researchers suggesting this subtype is relatively widespread in the general population. The Alzheimer's Association estimates that 5.2 million Americans are living with AD. And with nearly half of hippocampal sparing AD patients being misdiagnosed, this could mean that well over 600,000 Americans make up this AD variant, researchers say.

In an oral presentation at the annual meeting of the American Academy of Neurology in Philadelphia, scientists say hippocampal sparing AD often produces symptoms that are substantially different from the most commonly known form of AD, which affects the hippocampus, the center of memory.

The patients, mostly male, are afflicted at a much younger age, and their symptoms can be bizarre behavioral problems such as frequent and sometimes profane angry outbursts, feelings that their limbs do not belong to them and are controlled by an "alien" unidentifiable force, or visual disturbances in the absence of eye problems, researchers say.

They also decline at a much faster rate than do patients with the most common form of AD.

"Many of these patients, however, have memories that are near normal, so clinicians often misdiagnose them with a variety of conditions that do not match the underlying neuropathology," says the study's lead author, Melissa Murray, Ph.D., an assistant professor of neuroscience at Mayo Clinic in Florida.

Many of these patients are diagnosed with frontotemporal dementia, a disorder characterized by changes in personality and social behavior, or corticobasal syndrome, characterized by movement disorders and cognitive dysfunction. Language dysfunction is also more common in hippocampal sparing AD, although patients do not have vocal or hearing deficits.

"What is tragic is that these patients are commonly misdiagnosed and we have new evidence that suggests drugs now on the market for AD could work best in these hippocampal sparing patients possibly better than they work in the common form of the disease," Dr. Murray says.

The researchers benefit greatly from one of the largest brain banks in the country more than 6,500 brain donations as well as a collaborative environment between neuroscience research and neurology at Mayo Clinic, she says.

Both hallmark proteins of AD amyloid beta (Aβ), which forms Aβ plaques, and tau, which produces tangles are found across all subtypes of AD, including hippocampal sparing AD. The researchers developed a mathematical algorithm to classify AD subtypes using tangle counts. "What is fascinating is that all the AD patient subtypes had the same amount of amyloid, but for some reason tau tangles were found in strategic cortical regions disproportionate to the hippocampus."

In these patients, tau preferentially damages and eventually destroys neurons in parts of the brain involved in behavior, motor awareness and recognition, as well as use of speech and vision, Dr. Murray says.

She says she hopes this research, the second high-profile Mayo study to highlight hippocampal sparing AD, will "open the minds" of clinicians who are trying to diagnose dementia, helping them understand that loss of memory is not present in every AD patient.

"Our studies support the notion that dementia related to AD does not necessarily equate to a loss of memory, and points to the need for more research in amyloid and tau imaging biomarkers to help clinicians accurately diagnose AD regardless of subtype," Dr. Murray says.


Contact: Kevin Punsky
Mayo Clinic

Related medicine news :

1. Launches Atypical Consumer Direct Wholesale Jewelry Site
2. Immunoglobulins Market to 2019 - Demand in Primary Immunodeficiency And CIDP Potentially Supplemented by Approval for Alzheimers Disease Available at
3. Indoor Memory Maker Triathlon Raises Funds for Alzheimers
4. Witnessing, Experiencing Traumatic Events May Worsen Heart Disease
5. Pulse pressure elevation could presage cerebrovascular disease in Alzheimers patients
6. Mayo Clinic offers newly approved treatment for acid reflux disease
7. Spouses of Cancer Patients May Have Raised Risk of Heart Disease, Stroke
8. Huntingtons Disease Linked to Reduced Cancer Risk in Study
9. AstraZeneca and DNDi to collaborate on drug screening for neglected tropical diseases
10. Role of Screening, Monitoring in Early Kidney Disease Unclear
11. No Proof That Gum Disease Causes Heart Disease, Experts Say
Post Your Comments:
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... Dr. Amanda Cheng, an ... Cheng has extensive experience with all areas of orthodontics, including robotic Suresmile technology, ... , Micro-osteoperforation is a revolutionary adjunct to orthodontic treatment. It can be ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... NY (PRWEB) , ... June 24, 2016 , ... Topical BioMedics, Inc, makers of Topricin ... companies that call for a minimum wage raise to $12 an hour by 2020 and ... This will restore the lost value of the minimum wage, assure the wage floor does ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... June 24, 2016 , ... ... today at the Clinical Decision Making in Emergency Medicine conference in Ponte Vedra ... authored journal articles published in Emergency Medicine Practice and Pediatric Emergency ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... Las Vegas, Nevada (PRWEB) , ... June 24, ... ... their Las Vegas client, The Grove Investment Group (TGIG), has initiated cultivation and ... The Grove, in Las Vegas and Pahrump, Nevada. , Puradigm is the manufacturer ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... ... National recruitment firm Slone Partners is pleased to announce the placement of ... President of North American Capital Sales at HTG Molecular . , ... the commercialization of the HTG EdgeSeq system and associated reagents in North America. , ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)... VIEW, Calif. , June 23, 2016 ... a.m. CST on Thursday, July 7, 2016 , , , ... ) , , , , EXPERT PANELISTS:  , ... Nitin Naik; Senior Industry Analyst, Christi Bird; Senior Industry Analyst, Divyaa ... The global pharmaceutical industry is witnessing an ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... PRINCETON, N.J. , June 23, 2016  Guerbet ... of Premier Inc.,s Supplier Horizon Award . ... this year, Guerbet was recognized for its support of ... value creation through clinical excellence, and commitment to lower ... delighted to receive this recognition of our outstanding customer ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... 2016 The Biotechnology industry might ... present great opportunities to investors. assesses the recent ... (NYSE: XON ), Vertex Pharmaceuticals Inc. (NASDAQ: ... ARNA ), and Regeneron Pharmaceuticals Inc. (NASDAQ: ... receive your complimentary trade alerts at: ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: