Biomarker Controversies and Diagnostic Difficulties in Alzheimer’s Disease

Alzheimer’s disease (AD) can be difficult to diagnose particularly in the earlier stages of illness when the symptoms are mild. In April 2011, National Institute on Aging(NIA)-Alzheimer’s Association published a new criteria for diagnosing AD revised to that of the NINCDS-ADRDA Alzheimer's Criteria proposed in 1984 by the National Institute of Neurological & Communicative Disorders & Stroke and the Alzheimer's Disease & Related Disorders Association (now known as The Alzheimer's Association).As per 1984 criteria the diagnosis of AD is mostly based on Neuropsychological assesment for possible & probable AD, while it needs Autopsy for Definite AD.The new 2011 criteria includes certain phases of dementia & 5 biomarkers which helps in improving an earlier clinical diagnosis of AD i.e preclinical AD(presence of AD pathology in the absence of symptoms & signs of dementia). The Aβ deposition & elevated tau can be seen even in other neuropsychiatric disorders other than AD which created the diagnostic dilemma.

Author(s): G.Mahesh and Tasneem Shazia

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