Adult Changes in Thought Study

Neuropathology Core

The Neuropathology Core has been a valuable and frequently utilized resource for the Adult Changes in Thought (ACT) cohort. It ensures that the most generous gift to science — a person’s brain — is used to maximize impact on the science of Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias at both a local and national level. Central to the Neuropathology Core’s success is a state-of-the-art repository of brain tissue and neuropathology data from study participants across the brain health spectrum (including those with and without dementia) using methods that maximize data quality.

The Neuropathology Core has fostered development of innovative, highly quantitative approaches to assess the neuropathology of dementia by integrating imaging technologies and analytical approaches to target and quantify pathological changes to brain tissue. The team performs post-mortem magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) exams on each brain donated to the neuropathology lab and generates 3D virtual brain reconstructions that can be used for deep learning approaches. These machine learning techniques can detect relevant neuroanatomical patterns and subtle variations that are not readily apparent using traditional or even standard quantitative approaches.

The Neuropathology Core will continue to build and extend a world-class precision neuropathology resource as part of the ACT Study.


C. Dirk Keene, MD, PhD

University of Washington
Department of Pathology

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