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Biomarkers for dementia diagnosis: differentiating DLB and FTD may be difficult
  1. Dag Aarsland1,2,
  2. Clive G Ballard3
  1. 1Department of Neurobiology, Ward and Society, Alzheimer's Disease Research Centre, Karolinska Institutet, Stockholm, Sweden
  2. 2Centre for Age-Related Diseases, Stavanger University Hospital, Stavanger, Norway
  3. 3Wolfson Centre for Age-Related Diseases, King's College London, London, UK
  1. Correspondence to Professor Dag Aarsland, Department of Neurobiology, Ward and Society, Alzheimer's Disease Research Centre, Karolinska Institutet, Novum, Huddinge, 171 77 Stockholm, Sweden; daarsland{at}

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Biomarkers are becoming increasingly important in distinguishing people with different dementias from older individuals without progressive cognitive decline,1 but their value in distinguishing between dementia subtypes is less clear. Dementia with Lewy-bodies (DLB) accounts for 10%–15% of people with dementia, and the complex combination of cognitive, neuropsychiatric, autonomic and motor disturbances results in greater impairment of quality of life, more carer burden, and higher health-related costs compared with other dementias.2 This, together with a high sensitivity to drug-related adverse events, in particular, antipsychotic agents, makes an early and accurate diagnosis imperative.

Dopamine transporter (DAT) scan, using ligands, such as beta-CIT, …

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  • Contributors DA drafted the paper; CGB critically reviewed the paper. Both authors contributed to literature search and intellectual content.

  • Funding DA has received research support from GE Health.

  • Competing interests None.

  • Patient consent Obtained.

  • Provenance and peer review Commissioned; internally peer reviewed.

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