Background: N-methyl[11C]2-(4'methylaminophenyl)-6-hydroxy-benzothiazole (PIB) is a positron emission tomography (PET) tracer with amyloid binding properties which allows in vivo measurement of cerebral amyloid load in Alzheimer's disease (AD). Frontotemporal dementia (FTD) is a syndrome that can be clinically difficult to distinguish from AD, but in FTD amyloid deposition is not a characteristic pathological finding.
Purpose: The aim of this study is to investigate PIB retention in FTD.
Methods: Ten patients with the diagnosis of FTD participated. The diagnosis was based on clinical and neuropsychological examination, computed tomography or magnetic resonance imaging scan, and PET with 18 Fluoro-2-deoxy-d-glucose (FDG). The PIB retention, measured in regions of interest, was normalised to a reference region (cerebellum). The results were compared with PIB retention data previously obtained from 17 AD patients with positive PIB retention and eight healthy controls (HC) with negative PIB retention. Statistical analysis was performed with a students t-test with significance level set to 0.00625 after Bonferroni correction.
Results: Eight FTD patients showed significantly lower PIB retention compared to AD in frontal (p < 0.0001), parietal (p < 0.0001), temporal (p = 0.0001), and occipital (p = 0.0003) cortices as well as in putamina (p < 0.0001). The PIB uptake in these FTD patients did not differ significantly from the HC in any region. However, two of the 10 FTD patients showed PIB retention similar to AD patients.
Conclusion: The majority of FTD patients displayed no PIB retention. Thus, PIB could potentially aid in differentiating between FTD and AD.