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J Nucl Med. 2014 Jun 1;55(Supplement 2):47S-55S. Epub 2014 May 12.

Potential Clinical Applications of PET/MR Imaging in Neurodegenerative Diseases.

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Department of Nuclear Medicine, University of Cologne, Cologne, Germany
Department of Nuclear Medicine, University of Leipzig, Leipzig, Germany.
Division of Nuclear Medicine and Radiology, University of Washington Medical Center, Seattle, WA.


Neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer disease are among today's most alarming health problems in our aging society. The clinical assessment of neurodegenerative disorders benefits from recent innovations in the field of imaging technology. These innovations include emerging tracers for molecular imaging of neurodegenerative pathology and the introduction of novel integrated PET/MR imaging instruments. Because both PET and MR imaging procedures have shown critical value in the diagnostic work-up of neurodegenerative disorders, the combination of both imaging modalities in the form of an integrated PET/MR imaging system may be of value. This combination includes practical methodologic advantages and an improved workflow facilitated by the combined acquisition of dual-modality data. It offers clinical advantages because of the systematic combination of complementary information, potentially allowing the creation of novel integrated imaging biomarkers. The effectiveness of new disease-modifying treatments may depend on the timely initiation of therapy before irreversible neuronal damage in slowly progressive neurodegenerative disorders. Integrated PET/MR imaging may be able to improve such early diagnosis through both structural and functional information.


MR/PET; PET/MR; dementia; hybrid imaging; neurodegeneration

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