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β-Amyloid Deposits in Brain Linked to Arterial Stiffness

Findings in nondemented patients; build-up of Aβ deposits increase with age

β-Amyloid Deposits in Brain Linked to Arterial Stiffness

WEDNESDAY, April 2, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Cerebral β-amyloid (Aβ) deposition increases with age in nondemented individuals, and this deposition is strongly associated with arterial stiffness, according to a study published online March 31 in JAMA Neurology.

Timothy M. Hughes, Ph.D., from Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, N.C., and colleagues used positron emission tomography (PET) using the Pittsburgh compound B twice two years apart in 81 nondemented individuals (≥83 years) to assess deposition of Aβ. A noninvasive and automated waveform analyzer was used close in time to the second PET scan to determine arterial stiffness.

The researchers found that the proportion of Aβ-positive individuals increased from 48 percent at baseline to 75 percent at follow-up. Among Aβ-positive participants, brachial-ankle pulse wave velocity (PWV) was significantly higher at baseline and follow-up. Only at follow-up was femoral-ankle PWV higher among Aβ-positive participants. There was no association between measures of central stiffness and blood pressure and Aβ status at baseline or follow-up. However, central stiffness was associated with a change in Aβ deposition over time, with each standard deviation increase in central stiffness (carotid-femoral PWV, P = 0.001; heart-femoral PWV, P = 0.004) linked to increases in Aβ deposition over two years.

"The association between Aβ deposition changes over time and generalized arterial stiffness indicated a relationship between the severity of subclinical vascular disease and progressive cerebral Aβ deposition," the authors write.

Several authors disclosed financial ties to the pharmaceutical and medical device industries.

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