Thursday, 21 August 2003: 13:45-15:15
Superior Room (Sheraton Hotel and Towers)

S089 Translational Research in Alzheimer Disease: From the Lab to the Clinic

This symposium will focuses on the significance of recent basic science advances in the clinical undestanding of dementing conditions. The first presentation (P. Giannakopoulos) addresses the controversial question of clinicopathological correlations in AD and present new stereological data in this field. The global analysis of neurofibrillary tangle and neuron numbers as well as amyloid volume in a series of prospectively documented autopsy cases show that neuronal pathology in hippocampal formation and frontal cortex closely reflects the progression of cognitive deficits in brain aging and Alzheimer’s disease. They also demonstrate that amyloid volume has no additional predictive value, in terms of clinicopathological correlations, beyond its interaction with NFT. The second presentation (G. Gold) summarizes recent clinicopathological data in the field of non-AD dementias including vascular, mixed dementia, and Parkinson disease dementia. In particular, the role of microvascular pathology in cognition as well as the contribution of Lewy body in cognitive deterioration will be addressed. The third presentation moves from clinical neuroanatomy to neuroimaging (V. Ibanez). The author will present a recent PET study of 30 cognitively intact elderly individuals and 15 AD cases aiming to determine if regional glucose metabolism is reduced during aging and if the hypometabolism has the same cortical distribution that in Alzheimer disease (AD) when controlling for brain atrophy. The few and small metabolic changes that are found in the elderly do not represent a prologue to metabolic changes observed in AD since the regional pattern of decreased glucose metabolism before correction for the atrophy in the elderly is very different from the pattern observed in Alzheimer disease. The following presentation (Dr. C. Bouras) offers an overview of the role of humoral immunity in the pathogenesis of AD lesions. Most importantly, the author will present experimental data indicating that immunoglobulin activation could have a direct deleterious effect on neuronal cytoskeleton both in vivo and in vitro. Finally, Dr. Giacobini will provide a critical review of current knowledge in molecular pharmacology of AD including a reference to available treatments (AchE inhibitors) and future perspectives (vaccination, inhibitos of beta and gamma secretases).
Chair:Panteleimon Giannakopoulos
 S089-001 Best Predictors of Cognitive Status in AD: Amyloid, Neurofibrillary Tangles or Neuronal Loss?
Panteleimon Giannakopoulos
 S089-002 Differential Diagnosis of Dementing Illness: from Brain to Bedside
Gabriel Gold
 S089-003 Immunity and Neurons: New Evidence Relating Immunoglobulins to Cytoskeletal Damage
Constantin Bouras
 S089-004 From Cholinesterase Inhibitors to Immunization: Perspectives and Problems
Ezio Giacobini
 S089-005 Differentiating Brain Glucose Metabolism in Normal Aging and AD
Vicente Ibanez

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