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MRI scans reveal brain changes in people at genetic risk for Alzheimer's
Date:12/16/2010

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People with a known, high risk for Alzheimer's disease develop abnormal brain function even before the appearance of telltale amyloid plaques that are characteristic of the disease, according to a new study.

Researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis report in the Dec. 15 issue of The Journal of Neuroscience that these patients had a particular form of the apolipoprotein E (APOE) gene called APOE4. The findings suggest that the gene variant affects brain function long before the brain begins accumulating the amyloid that will eventually lead to dementia.

Researchers identified functional differences in the brains of APOE4-positive and APOE4-negative people. Red indicates increased connectivity among regions at rest while blue shows decreased connectivity.

"We looked at a group of structures in the b
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Contact: Jim Dryden
jdryden@wustl.edu
314-286-0110
Washington University School of Medicine
Source:Eurekalert  

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