Navigation Links
Brain Scans to Spot Alzheimer's May Be Available This Year
Date:6/8/2011

By Randy Dotinga
HealthDay Reporter

WEDNESDAY, June 8 (HealthDay News) -- Brain scans that detect early warning signs of Alzheimer's may be available in the United States as soon as this year, researchers reported this week, though it may be too early for the scans to be of much help for those with the disease.

"You'll get a more accurate and earlier diagnosis, which can be important to people who want to know what's going on when their memory is starting to decline," said Dr. Christopher Rowe, lead author of one study on the scans. "Unfortunately, until there's an effective therapy, there's nothing that can be done to stop the progression of the disease. The real value is going to come when we have an effective therapy."

According to the Alzheimer's Association, the disease is the sixth leading cause of death in the United States, and the number of deaths has risen in recent years.

Rowe and other researchers just released studies that reveal the effectiveness of PET scans that search for signs of a protein in the brain called beta-amyloid. It essentially gunks up the brain and causes senility.

In one of three new studies, researchers from University of Texas found that levels of the protein, as detected through a PET scanner, were higher in those whose brains took longer to process things. In older people, they linked higher levels to memory problems.

Physicians who find signs of senility in people who undergo brain scans have limited options to help them. There's no cure for the illness, and drug treatments have not proven to be very effective.

Rowe, who's director of nuclear medicine at the Center for PET at Austin Hospital in Melbourne, Australia, said that one company, Avid Radiopharmaceuticals, hopes to get federal approval for amyloid scanning technology by the end of the year. Rowe has consulted for the company.

The scans won't be cheap, according to Rowe, potentially costing thousands of dollars each in the United States. But they accurately diagnose Alzheimer's about 90 percent of the time, he said, compared with an 80 percent rate that physicians reach on their own. And, he said, the scans can detect Alzheimer's at an early stage.

Dr. James R. Burke, director of the Memory Disorders Clinic at Duke University Medical Center, wondered about the value of diagnosis via scanner.

"Would you scan all people over a certain age?" he asked. "What do you say to a cognitively normal individual with increased amyloid in his/her brain that you would not advise for the same person without amyloid? If we had a therapy that reduced amyloid and prevented cognitive decline, then an argument could be made for widespread use of these scans."

However, Burke said, the study of brain scans does have value now as a research tool.

The studies were scheduled to be presented at the annual meeting of the Society of Nuclear Medicine, June 4 to 8 in San Antonio, Texas. Experts note that research presented at meetings should be considered preliminary because it has not been subjected to the rigorous scrutiny given to research published in medical journals.

More information

The U.S. National Institute on Aging has more on Alzheimer's disease.

SOURCES: James R. Burke, M.D., Ph.D., director, Memory Disorders Clinic, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, N.C.; presentations, Society for Nuclear Medicine, annual meeting, San Antonio, Texas, June 4-8, 2011


'/>"/>
Copyright©2010 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. Exercise May Protect the Brain From Silent Strokes
2. Eating a high-fat diet may rapidly injure brain cells that control body weight
3. Regular Exercise May Benefit the Brain as Well as the Body
4. Chronic Pot Smoking Affects Brain Chemistry, Scans Show
5. Construction industry has highest number of traumatic brain injuries in US workplace
6. Reading Arabic or English May Tax Brain Differently
7. Insulin action in the brain can lead to obesity
8. Cancer survivors cant shake pain, fatigue, insomnia, foggy brain
9. Iron key to brain tumor drug delivery
10. New grant to study how pediatric brain tumor, ependymoma, develops
11. USC study locates the source of key brain function
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Brain Scans to Spot Alzheimer's May Be Available This Year
(Date:6/25/2016)... , ... June 25, 2016 , ... First Choice ... States, named Dr. Sesan Ogunleye, as the Medical Director of its new Mesquite-Samuell Farm ... Medical Director of our new Mesquite location,” said Dr. James M. Muzzarelli, Executive Medical ...
(Date:6/25/2016)... ... ... On Friday, June 10, Van Mitchell, Secretary of the Maryland Department of Health and ... their exemplary accomplishments in worksite health promotion. , The Wellness at Work Awards took ... the BWI Marriott in Linthicum Heights. iHire was one of 42 businesses to receive ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... Marne, Michigan (PRWEB) , ... June 24, 2016 , ... ... To deal with these feelings, many turn to unhealthy avenues, such as drug or ... Center of Marne, Michigan, has released tools for healthy coping following a traumatic event. ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... June 24, 2016 , ... ... Conference and Scientific Sessions in Dallas that it will receive two significant new ... the grants came as PHA marked its 25th anniversary by recognizing patients, medical ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... CA (PRWEB) , ... June 24, 2016 , ... Comfort ... the American Cancer Society and the Road To Recovery® program to drive cancer patients ... seniors and other adults to ensure the highest quality of life and ongoing independence. ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)... June 23, 2016 Revolutionary technology ... Oticon , industry leaders in advanced audiology and ... Oticon Opn ™, the world,s first internet connected ... for IoT devices.      (Photo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20160622/382240 ... a number of ,world firsts,: , TwinLink™ ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... Tenn. , June 23, 2016 /PRNewswire/ ... automating, integrating and transforming the patient payment ... of several innovative new products and services ... of its revenue cycle offerings. These award-winning ... more efficient workflows, remain compliant in an ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... 2016  Delcath Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ: DCTH ... on treatment of primary and metastatic liver cancers, announces ... - www.againsttheodds.eu - has been awarded a ... The website was developed as ... their families who are coping with the devastating diagnosis ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: