Ifrah Zawar, MD, an assistant professor in the School of Medicine’s Department of Neurology, was recently awarded a grant by the Alzheimer’s Association for the next 3 years to investigate and identify distinct neuro-imaging and neuropathology biomarkers in Alzheimer’s patients with epilepsy and develop prediction models to identify Alzheimer’s patients at risk for developing seizures.
Using multi-center, longtudinal data from over 39 Alzheimer’s disease research centers from across 26 U.S. states, Dr. Zawar and her colleagues will examine the brain MRI’s of individuals with both Alzheimer’s and seizures. Dr. Zawar’s team will also evaluate the cerebral spinal fluid to determine differences in protein biomarkers predictive of seizures in Alzheimer’s disease. The information they collect will be used to identify biomarkers that predict when an individual shows the distinct changes seen with both Alzheimer’s and epilepsy. Being able to identify individuals with Alzheimer’s who are at risk for seizures is important for early diagnosis and the development of specialized treatments for those living with dual conditions and may improve their long term outcomes.