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AAIC 2023 | Visual versus quantitative analysis of tau-PET

Alexis Moscoso, PhD, University of Gothenburg, Gothenburg, Sweden, discusses his recent research investigating the concordance between visual interpretation and quantitative analysis of tau-PET. Clinicians apply an FDA-approved visual interpretation method to assess PET scans as tau-positive or -negative, while researchers typically use quantitative analysis methods. This study was conducted to determine if the visual and quantitative methods (SUVR and MTL-NEO) used to assess tau-PET were comparable. The results of the study from 2700 participants determined that the two methods showed limited concordance, especially in early-stage disease. As tau deposition is heterogenous and was often seen to deviate from the expected pattern of spatial progression, quantitative methods may miss this as they mainly focus on the temporal lobe. However, the two techniques were more comparable in later stages of disease as individuals had a more homogenous spread of tau proteins. Overall, Dr Moscoso concluded that better tau quantification approaches are needed in research, which assess the whole brain and better align with visual interpretations used in clinical practice. This interview took place at the Alzheimer’s Association International Conference® (AAIC) 2023 in Amsterdam, Netherlands.

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