What is it about?

This study finds two populations of Alzheimer’s Disease patients based on the progression of brain deterioration derived from sMRI (structural magnetic resonance imaging) scans. The brain areas affected in the two populations correspond to the respective decreases in cognitive function, with only one group having the cardinal memory deficits Alzheimer’s Disease is known for. The division of persons based on the sMRI data is - for some patients - earlier possible than a clinical diagnosis of Alzheimer’s Disease. The study is based on 1017 persons from the ADNI cohort.

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Why is it important?

Brain disorders are often very heterogeneous and diagnosed rather late with standard diagnostic procedures like neuropsychological tests. Furthermore, deterioration of brain matter is, especially at the beginning, relatively small and not visible with the bare eye. This can lead to undifferentiated treatments that are administered only in the later stages of the disease. Early and differentiated treatment, however, can help to soften the impact of the disease.


The authors of this article hope that their work will contribute to a better understanding of the physiological changes underlying Alzheimer’s Disease and at some point to the development of more sensitive and differentiated tools for diagnosis of the disease.

Alexandra Reichenbach
Heilbronn University of Applied Sciences

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: Two Routes to Alzheimer’s Disease Based on Differential Structural Changes in Key Brain Regions, Journal of Alzheimer s Disease, April 2023, IOS Press,
DOI: 10.3233/jad-221061.
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