[(18)F]flutemetamol amyloid positron emission tomography in preclinical and symptomatic Alzheimer's disease: specific detection of advanced phases of amyloid-β pathology

Alzheimers Dement. 2015 Aug;11(8):975-85. doi: 10.1016/j.jalz.2015.05.018. Epub 2015 Jun 30.


Background: Amyloid positron emission tomography (PET) has become an important tool to identify amyloid-β (Aβ) pathology in Alzheimer's disease (AD) patients. Here, we determined the diagnostic value of the amyloid PET tracer [(18)F]flutemetamol in relation to Aβ pathology at autopsy.

Methods: [(18)F]flutemetamol PET was carried out in a cohort of 68 patients included in a [(18)F]flutemetamol amyloid PET imaging end-of-life study (GE067-007). At autopsy, AD pathology was determined and Aβ plaque pathology was classified into phases of its regional distribution (0-5).

Results: [(18)F]flutemetamol PET was universally positive in cases with advanced stage postmortem Aβ pathology (Aβ phases 4 and 5). Negative amyloid PET was universally observed in nondemented or non-AD dementia cases with initial Aβ phases 1 and 2, whereas 33.3% of the phase 3 cases were positive.

Conclusions: [(18)F]flutemetamol amyloid PET detects primarily advanced stages of Aβ pathology in preclinical and symptomatic AD cases.

Keywords: Alzheimer's disease; Amyloid; Amyloid PET; Preclinical stage; [(18)F]flutemetamol.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Alzheimer Disease / diagnostic imaging*
  • Alzheimer Disease / pathology*
  • Amyloid / metabolism*
  • Analysis of Variance
  • Aniline Compounds / pharmacokinetics*
  • Autopsy
  • Benzothiazoles / pharmacokinetics*
  • Cohort Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Logistic Models
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Male
  • Positron-Emission Tomography / methods*
  • Psychiatric Status Rating Scales
  • Tomography Scanners, X-Ray Computed


  • Amyloid
  • Aniline Compounds
  • Benzothiazoles
  • flutemetamol