. Enhanced brain activity may precede the diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease by 30 years. Brain. 2006 Nov;129(Pt 11):2908-22. PubMed.

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  1. This paper provides interesting data on familial AD, PS1 mutation carriers. Increased memory-related brain activity was detected in fMRI in young mutation carriers, suggesting a compensatory effort to overcome developing neural dysfunction, while middle-aged mutation carriers showed decreased activity. Interestingly, similar compensatory activations have been reported in subjects with MCI (see, e.g., Dickerson et al., 2005; Hämäläinen et al., 2006).

    The paper supports the significance of imaging methods in early detection of dementia, but on the other hand points to dynamic changes in fMRI occurring during progression of disease pathology.

    References:

    . Increased hippocampal activation in mild cognitive impairment compared to normal aging and AD. Neurology. 2005 Aug 9;65(3):404-11. PubMed.

    . Increased fMRI responses during encoding in mild cognitive impairment. Neurobiol Aging. 2007 Dec;28(12):1889-903. PubMed.

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