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Smell test may predict early stages of Alzheimer’s disease

Researchers from Columbia University Medical Center (CUMC), New York State Psychiatric Institute and NewYork-Presbyterian reported that an odor identification test may prove useful in predicting cognitive decline and detecting early-stage Alzheimer’s disease. Their two studies, presented at the Alzheimer’s Association’s International Conference in Toronto, Canada, suggest that the University of Pennsylvania Smell Identification Test (UPSIT) may offer a practical, low-cost alternative to other tests. Read more.

18F-FDG-PET/CT vs CT in cancer detection

Imaging with 18F-FDG-PET/CT compared to CT for detecting cancer in patients with nonspecific signs and symptoms of cancer (NSSC) provides a higher diagnostic specificity and accuracy than does CT alone, according to a study published in The Journal of Nuclear Medicine.

Researchers from Denmark conducted a randomized prospective trial of patients with serious NSSC symptoms to determine if 18F-FDG-PET/CT was superior to CT as initial imaging modality in this patient group. Read more.

TAU PET Imaging in Northern Manhattan Study of Metabolism and Mind

The burden of late onset Alzheimer’s dementia (LOAD) and its antecedents is increasing without known prevention or cure, and diabetes seems to be one of the strongest risk factors. The predominating causal model in Alzheimer’s disease (AD) research is based on the amyloid hypothesis, which posits that amyloid (A) deposition in the brain causes synaptic dysfunction resulting in early memory deficits and progression to mild cognitive impairment (MCI) and dementia. Tau has also gained increasing interest as an AD pathology feature, biomarker, and treatment target. Read more.

Imaging the birth of new brain cells

The adult brain was long regarded as being unable to grow new neurons—you were stuck with what you had. We know now that this view is wrong and that the human brain continues to produce new neurons throughout our lives. Read more.

PET imaging serotonin biomarker may predict suicide risk

According to statistics from the Centers for Disease Control, a suicide occurs every 13 minutes in the US. While there were more than 41,000 known suicides in 2013, an additional 1.3 million adults had attempted suicide in the previous year, and 2.7 million people made a plan to do so. There is a clear need for methods to help identify individuals at risk of suicide, and certain biomarkers could aid in such efforts. Using positron emission tomography (PET) imaging, a study has explored whether serotonin binding potential predicts future suicide attempts and ideation, as well as intent and lethality of suicidal behavior. Read more.

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