Some Examples of Diagnostic Images on Alzheimer's Disease

Brain Metabolism in Alzheimer's Disease (PET Scans)

From Alzheimer's Disease Education and Referral (ADEAR) Center's Web site

PET scans show differences in brain activity between a normal brain (left) and a brain affected by Alzheimer's disease (right). Blue and black denote inactive areas.

No one knows whether the decline in glucose metabolism causes neurons to degenerate or whether neuron degeneration causes metabolism to decline. In the effort to find out, scientists have examined glucose molecules at every step of the way from bloodstream to neuron. (Dr. Budinger)

The route is complex. It begins as glucose-laden blood flows through the capillaries, the tiny blood vessels that carry the blood past neurons. Specialized molecules capture glucose molecules from blood and shuttle them into the neurons.

Magnetic Resonance Imaging in Alzheimer's Disease

Examples of delineation of the hippocampus of an Alzheimer patient,

most posterior slice drawn presented at bottom right.

Examples of delineation of the amygdala. Alzheimer patient.

Source from University of Kuopio Series of Reports Department of Neurology

Cerebral Blood Flow Changes with Memory

These studies are part of a series designed to identify brain areas involved in memory. Finding so far, which may be important to understanding diseases such as Alzheimer's, indicate that different areas of the brain are involved in different kinds of memory and at different times in the development of a memory.

Visual Stabdard Scoring for Brain Atrophy

The 12 panel photographic array represents the visual standards based scoring system for cerebral atrophy in brains from aging nondemented control and Alzheimer-dementia subjects at autopsy. All brain specimens have been fixed in 10% buffered formalin and sectioned in the coronal plane prior to photography. The images are grouped as an array of 4 columns corresponding to left lateral (far left column) and three coronal views. The rostrocaudal coronal levels were chosen to include standard neuroradiologic assessment levels for the ventriclular system: frontal horns (column 2), body and temporal horns plus 3rd ventricle (column 3), and trigone (column 4, far right).

From the ADRC Neuropathology Core of the Washington University School of Medicine in St Louis

GRADING SYSTEM

Grade 1 (top row of 4 images) corresponds to mild cerebral atrophy and ventricular dilatation. Note this degree of change may be assessed as compatible with normal aging. Thus, grade 1 accomodates scoring of brains from nondemented control subjects with minimal or no gross neuropathology.

Grade 2 (middle row of 4 images) corresponds to moderately severe cerebral atrophy and ventricular dilatation. Note widening of sulci, rounding of frontal horns, and expansion of the area of the body and 3rd ventricle.

Grade 3 (bottom row of 4 images) corresponds to severe cerebral atrophy and ventricular dilatation. Dramatic shrinkage of gyri, gaping of some sulci, and extreme ventricular dilatation is obvious. Note also the white matter area is markedly diminished from the amount noted in grade 1 brains.

More Links on Brain Grading