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Microtubule-associated protein-t (MAPT; TAU; FTDP-17)-staining PET reagent for imaging Alzheimer's disease (AD) pathology

Mouse and human studies suggest PET compounds could be useful for imaging TAU neurofibrillary tangles in AD and other tauopathies. In brain tissue samples from patients with AD and a mouse model of TAU neurofibrillary tangle formation, in vitro delivery of fluorescently labeled phenyl, pyridinyl-butadienyl-benzothia-zole or benzothiazolium compounds led to detection of TAU-containing neurofibrillary tangles. In the same mice and in patients with AD, PET imaging with radiolabeled versions of the compounds detected TAU accumulation in the neocortical and limbic regions of the brain. Next steps include correlating the distribution and degree of PET staining with postmortem TAU histopathology and evaluating the agents in patients who have mild cognitive impairment.

SciBX 6(40); doi:10.1038/scibx.2013.1147
Published online Oct. 17, 2013

Patent pending; available for licensing

Maruyama, M. et al. Neuron; published online Sept. 18, 2013;
doi:10.1016/j.neuron.2013.07.037
Contact: Makoto Higuchi, National Institute of Radiological Sciences, Chiba, Japan
e-mail:

mhiguchi@nirs.go.jp