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Neurobiol Aging. 2012 Sep;33(9):1979-87. doi: 10.1016/j.neurobiolaging.2011.10.002. Epub 2011 Nov 10.

Coronary risk correlates with cerebral amyloid deposition.

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Department of Neurology, School of Medicine, University of California, Davis, CA, USA.


This study investigated the hypothesis that vascular risk factors are amyloidogenic. Participants were 43 persons, most with normal cognition or mild cognitive impairment. Vascular risk was quantified using the Framingham Coronary Risk Profile (FCRP) score. Cerebral amyloid was measured by [(11)C]Pittsburgh compound B (PIB) positron emission tomography (PET) and quantified with a Global PIB index, which is the average of distribution volume ratios in selected cortical regions of interest. In a bivariate model FCRP accounted for 16% of the variance in PIB index (p < 0.008) and the positive association remained significant controlling for age and sex. The effect of FCRP was independent of apolipoprotein E (APOE) genotype, which was also associated as expected with PIB. Carotid intima-media thickness was not associated with PIB index. Effects of individual FCRP component risk factors, cholesterol, and glycemic status on PIB index were all nonsignificant, suggesting an aggregate effect of risk factors. Although this is a correlational observation it may represent a causal relationship as there are multiple, plausible, amyloidogenic mechanisms of vascular risk factors.

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