Multisite study of the relationships between antemortem [11C]PIB-PET Centiloid values and postmortem measures of Alzheimer's disease neuropathology

Alzheimers Dement. 2019 Feb;15(2):205-216. doi: 10.1016/j.jalz.2018.09.001. Epub 2018 Oct 19.


Introduction: We sought to establish the relationships between standard postmortem measures of AD neuropathology and antemortem [11C]PIB-positron emission tomography ([11C]PIB-PET) analyzed with the Centiloid (CL) method, a standardized scale for Aβ-PET quantification.

Methods: Four centers contributed 179 participants encompassing a broad range of clinical diagnoses, PET data, and autopsy findings.

Results: CL values increased with each CERAD neuritic plaque score increment (median -3 CL for no plaques and 92 CL for frequent plaques) and nonlinearly with Thal Aβ phases (increases were detected starting at phase 2) with overlap between scores/phases. PET-pathology associations were comparable across sites and unchanged when restricting the analyses to the 56 patients who died within 2 years of PET. A threshold of 12.2 CL detected CERAD moderate-to-frequent neuritic plaques (area under the curve = 0.910, sensitivity = 89.2%, specificity = 86.4%), whereas 24.4 CL identified intermediate-to-high AD neuropathological changes (area under the curve = 0.894, sensitivity = 84.1%, specificity = 87.9%).

Discussion: Our study demonstrated the robustness of a multisite Centiloid [11C]PIB-PET study and established a range of pathology-based CL thresholds.

Keywords: Alzheimer's disease neuropathologic changes; CERAD; Centiloid; Harmonization; Neuropathology; Pittsburgh compound-B; Positron emission tomography; Thal; Threshold; β-amyloid.

Publication types

  • Multicenter Study
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Alzheimer Disease* / diagnostic imaging
  • Alzheimer Disease* / pathology
  • Aniline Compounds*
  • Autopsy*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Neuropathology*
  • Plaque, Amyloid* / diagnostic imaging
  • Plaque, Amyloid* / pathology
  • Positron-Emission Tomography*
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Thiazoles*


  • 2-(4'-(methylamino)phenyl)-6-hydroxybenzothiazole
  • Aniline Compounds
  • Thiazoles