LA JOLLA, Calif., Oct. 12, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- A ground-breaking paper published online today (Heister, Brewer, Magda, Blennow & McEvoy, for the Alzheimer's Disease Neuroimaging Initiative, 2011, Predicting MCI Outcome with Clinically Available MRI and CSF Biomarkers, Neurology, epub ahead of print) compared the ability of three clinically available measures to predict the onset of dementia: i) degree of memory impairment, ii) degree of atrophy in the medial temporal lobe of the brain as measured by NeuroQuant®, and iii) levels of peptides in cerebrospinal fluid that are associated with Alzheimer's disease. It reported that quantitative atrophy measurement significantly improved prediction of future dementia onset in elderly individuals with memory complaints.
According to Dr. Linda McEvoy, from the Department of Radiology at the University of California, San Diego (UCSD) and senior author of the report: "When these risk factors were examined separately, individuals positive on any one risk factor showed higher risk of developing dementia than individuals testing negative on that factor. More importantly, the joint presence of any two risk factors substantially increased risk. In fact 85% of patients with both higher memory impairment and medial temporal atrophy became demented within 3 years, whereas only 5% of those testing negative on both criteria did. Of the three measures, the presence of atrophy predicted the fastest rate of decline."
Dr. James Brewer, another study co-author who is a neurologist and faculty member at UCSD, indicated that: "Ongoing heart damage can be detected with physical markers, but no such measure has existed for brain degeneration. This paper shows that we now can look directly at the brain using MRI and NeuroQuant® to determine if critical structures are degenerating. At UCSD, we have been using this tool clinically for more than three years and it has fundamentally changed the way that patients are assessed and managed. In individuals without neurodegeneration, the search for other causes can be curative; in individuals with neurodegeneration, education and preparation is facilitated by the more accurate assessment."
The FDA-cleared NeuroQuant® system is "intended for automatic labeling, visualization and volumetric quantification of segmentable brain structures from a set of MR images". Using scans routed from a scanner or PACS as input, it can return age-related statistical atrophy reports and numerical and color-blended anatomical volumes to most DICOM-compliant viewing devices. NeuroQuant® is already available at more than 50 leading clinical sites across the nation.
About CorTechs Labs, Inc. CorTechs translates advanced neuroimaging research into practical clinical tools that may improve care of the millions of people suffering from neurodegenerative disorders. For more information please visit our website at www.cortechslabs.com.
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