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Brain. 2017 Jul 1;140(7):1829-1850. doi: 10.1093/brain/awx047.

Emerging concepts in sporadic cerebral amyloid angiopathy.

Author information

1
Hemorrhagic Stroke Research Program, Department of Neurology, Massachusetts General Hospital Stroke Research Center, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, USA.
2
Neurovascular Research Laboratory, Department of Radiology, Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Charlestown, MA, USA.
3
Stroke Service and Neuroscience Intensive Care Unit, Department of Neurology, Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA, USA.
4
Alzheimer Research Unit, Department of Neurology, Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School, 114, 16th St., Charlestown, MA 02129, USA.
5
C.S. Kubik Laboratory for Neuropathology, Department of Pathology, Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School, 114, 16th St., Charlestown, MA 02129, USA.

Abstract

Sporadic cerebral amyloid angiopathy is a common, well-defined small vessel disease and a largely untreatable cause of intracerebral haemorrhage and contributor to age-related cognitive decline. The term 'cerebral amyloid angiopathy' now encompasses not only a specific cerebrovascular pathological finding, but also different clinical syndromes (both acute and progressive), brain parenchymal lesions seen on neuroimaging and a set of diagnostic criteria-the Boston criteria, which have resulted in increasingly detected disease during life. Over the past few years, it has become clear that, at the pathophysiological level, cerebral amyloid angiopathy appears to be in part a protein elimination failure angiopathy and that this dysfunction is a feed-forward process, which potentially leads to worsening vascular amyloid-β accumulation, activation of vascular injury pathways and impaired vascular physiology. From a clinical standpoint, cerebral amyloid angiopathy is characterized by individual focal lesions (microbleeds, cortical superficial siderosis, microinfarcts) and large-scale alterations (white matter hyperintensities, structural connectivity, cortical thickness), both cortical and subcortical. This review provides an interdisciplinary critical outlook on various emerging and changing concepts in the field, illustrating mechanisms associated with amyloid cerebrovascular pathology and neurological dysfunction.

KEYWORDS:

Alzheimer’s disease; cerebral amyloid angiopathy; intracerebral haemorrhage; perivascular drainage; small vessel disease

PMID:
28334869
PMCID:
PMC6059159
DOI:
10.1093/brain/awx047
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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