Therapeutic development should not forget the symptoms
According to the 1983 edition of the Oxford textbook of psychiatry, “There are no specific clinical features to separate [frontotemporal dementia] from Alzheimer’s, and the distinction is generally made at autopsy not in life”.1 That was a popular view at the time — dementias are clinically all the same but sometimes pathologically different. Since then, the growth in understanding of non-Alzheimer degenerative dementias has been enormous. Careful clinical characterisation has, in turn, paved the way for numerous fundamental discoveries in pathology and genetics.
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