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Brain Pathol. 2010 Mar;20(2):459-67. doi: 10.1111/j.1750-3639.2009.00322.x. Epub 2009 Jul 16.

Cerebral microinfarcts associated with severe cerebral beta-amyloid angiopathy.

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Department of Pathology, Laboratory Medicine Neuropathology, David Geffen School of Medicine, University of California, Los Angeles, Calif 92093-0603 , USA.


Cerebral amyloid angiopathy (CAA) is common in elderly individuals, especially those affected with Alzheimer's disease. Eighteen brains with severe SCAA (SCAA) were compared with 21 brains with mild CAA (MCAA) to investigate whether the presence of SCAA in the brains of demented patients was associated with a higher burden of old microinfarcts than those with MCAA. Immunohistochemistry for CD68 was employed to highlight old microinfarcts in tissue blocks from various brain regions. Old microinfarcts, manually counted by light microscopy, were present in 14 of 18 SCAA brains and in 7 of 21 MCAA brains (P = 0.01, two-tailed Fisher's exact test). The average number of old microinfarcts across geographic regions in each brain ranged from 0 to 1.95 (mean rank 24.94, sum of ranks 449) in the SCAA group, and from 0 to 0.35 (mean rank 15.76, sum of ranks 331) in the MCAA group (P = 0.008, two-tailed Mann-Whitney U-test). Frequent old microinfarcts in demented individuals with severe CAA may contribute a vascular component to the cognitive impairment in these patients.

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