Our recent publication in the journal Neurology has been accompanied by a nice editorial reviewing and discussing the novel finding. This work involved recruitment of subjects from the longitudinal Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities (ARIC) study, for an additional PET scan to visualize amyloid in the brain, which has been a major breakthrough in the field of Alzheimer disease (AD). The resulting ARIC-PET amyloid imaging study revealed for the first time that black subjects depicted higher amyloid levels, even after adjustment for demographics, vascular risk factors, and cognitive status, making the provocative suggestion that there might be race differences in the process of amyloid deposition.
The analysis itself was stimulated by reports of increased prevalence of AD in black compared to white individuals. In this major NIH funded effort (PI: Gottesman), extensive site travel, quality assurance and quantitative analysis was performed by Chief Physicist Dr. Rahmim for data obtained from the three PET imaging sites (Washington County, MD; Jackson, MS; and Forsyth County, NC).