Pitt researchers publish Familial Alzheimer’s Disease study findings

The Lancet Neurology published Longitudinal assessment of neuroimaging and clinical markers in autosomal dominant Alzheimer’s disease: a prospective cohort study authored by Pitt researchers at the ADRC and their colleagues in the August 2015 issue.

The “Familial Alzheimer’s Disease Study” was conducted at our ADRC from 2003-2015. Participants were recruited from around the country and often participated as families (see Part 2-Chapter 9 of the HBO documentary “The Alzheimer’s Project“). Some participants visited Pittsburgh as many 8 times over a period as long as 11 years. Most of these participants remain active in the follow-up study, the Dominantly Inherited Alzheimer’s Network (DIAN). This paper describes the first phase of that study and shows that the brain changes in this highly inherited (half of every generation) and early-onset (typically in the 40’s) form of Alzheimer’s disease follows the same pattern as in the more common late-onset form of the disease. This is very important for the interpretation of several ongoing drug trials.

Additionally this article was cited in a commentary within the same Lancet Neurology issue regarding the controversy over biomarkers’ clinical relevance: Biomarkers for Alzheimer’s disease: a controversial topic.