Diagnostic utility of 18F-Fluorodeoxyglucose positron emission tomography (FDG-PET) in asymptomatic subjects at increased risk for Alzheimer's disease
Alexander Drzezga 1 , Daniele Altomare 2 3 , Cristina Festari 2 3 , Javier Arbizu 4 , Stefania Orini 5 , Karl Herholz 6 , Peter Nestor 7 8 , Federica Agosta 9 , Femke Bouwman 10 , Flavio Nobili 11 , Zuzana Walker 12 , Giovanni Battista Frisoni 2 13 14 , Marina Boccardi 2 13 , EANM-EAN Task Force for the Prescription of FDG-PET for Dementing Neurodegenerative Disorders
Purpose: To assess the clinical utility of 18F-Fluorodeoxyglucose positron emission tomography (FDG-PET) for detection of early signs of neurodegeneration in conditions of increased risk for Alzheimer's disease (AD) as defined by: subjective cognitive decline (SCD), evidence of cerebral amyloid-pathology, apolipoprotein E (APOE) ε4-positive genotype, or autosomal dominant forms of AD (ADAD) in asymptomatic stages.
Methods: A comprehensive literature search was conducted using the PICO model to extract evidence from relevant studies. An expert panel then voted using the Delphi method on three different diagnostic scenarios.
Results: The level of empirical study evidence for the use of FDG-PET to detect meaningful early signs of neurodegeneration was considered to be poor for ADAD and lacking for SCD and asymptomatic persons at risk, based on APOE ε4-positive genotype or cerebral amyloid pathology.
Consequently, and consistent with current diagnostic criteria, panelists decided not to recommend routine clinical use of FDG-PET in these situations and to currently mainly reserve it for research purposes.
Conclusion: Currently, there is limited evidence on which to base recommendations regarding the clinical routine use of FDG-PET to detect diagnostically meaningful early signs of neurodegeneration in asymptomatic subjects with ADAD, with APOE ε4-positive genotype, or with cerebral amyloid pathology, and in subjects with SCD.
Future prospective studies are warranted and in part already ongoing, aiming to assess the added value of FDG-PET in this context beyond research applications.