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  • GE Assists in Alzheimer's Detection
Jul 2004
PHILADELPHIA, July 23 -- GE Healthcare, a subsidiary of General Electric (GE), is showcasing its technologies to help physicians assess Alzheimer's disease at the Alzheimer's Association's Ninth Annual International Conference on Alzheimer's Disease and Related Disorders in Philadelphia this week.

GE develops noninvasive imaging technologies that enable physicians to identify and diagnose Alzheimer's disease in their patients, such as positron emission tomography (PET), the combination of PET with computed tomography (CT) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). The company said it is also participating in collaborations and investing in research to develop technologies that will help physicians diagnose and treat Alzheimer's disease earlier.

The Conference on Alzheimer's Disease and Related Disorders includes more than 5000 researchers sharing information and resources on the etiology, pathology and treatment of Alzheimer's disease and related disorders.

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), an agency within the US Department of Health and Human Services, recently announced it intends to expand Medicare coverage of PET to include some Medicare beneficiaries with suspected Alzheimer's disease and to assess some patients with early dementia or unexpected memory loss. In addition, Medicare will collaborate with the National Institutes of Health to research the role of PET scans in guiding treatment and predicting the course of Alzheimer' s disease.

According to Joseph M. Hogan, president and CEO of GE Healthcare Technologies, GE is in a unique position to help physicians diagnose, treat and manage patients with Alzheimer's disease. "We invest millions of dollars in the research and development of innovative technologies that are helping to improve the quality of life of Alzheimer's patients and their families," said Hogan. "It is our hope that one day our technologies and resources will help deliver the ultimate solution -- a cure."

GE's Global Research Center recently joined forces with Albany Medical Center to open the Neurosciences Advanced Imaging Research Center, a facility designed to aid scientists and researchers in the discovery of technology to identify the biological changes that occur in brain cells of Alzheimer's patients. This technology, a form of molecular imaging, involves developing smart molecules that seek out and highlight specific biological processes so they are visible through medical imaging technology. By seeing and analyzing these biological processes, scientists hope to connect certain biological changes in the brain with the onset of Alzheimer's disease.

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