A cortical microvascular structure in vascular dementia, Alzheimer's disease, frontotemporal lobar degeneration and nondemented controls: a sign of angiogenesis due to brain ischaemia?

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Aims: We observed a microvascular structure in the cerebral cortex that has not, to our knowledge, been previously described. We have termed the structure a ‘raspberry’, referring to its appearance under a bright-field microscope. We hypothesized that raspberries form through angiogenesis due to some form of brain ischaemia or hypoperfusion. The aims of this study were to quantify raspberry frequency within the cerebral cortex according to diagnosis (vascular dementia, Alzheimer's disease, frontotemporal lobar degeneration and nondemented controls) and brain regions (frontal, temporal, parietal and occipital cortices, regardless of diagnosis). Materials and methods: In each of 10 age-matched subjects per group, a 20-mm section of the cerebral cortex was examined in haematoxylin-and-eosin-stained sections of the frontal, temporal and parietal, and/or occipital lobes. Tests were performed to validate the haematoxylin-and-eosin-based identification of relative differences between the groups, and to investigate inter-rater variability. Results: Raspberry frequency was highest in subjects with vascular dementia, followed by those with frontotemporal lobar degeneration, Alzheimer's disease and last, nondemented controls. The frequency of raspberries in subjects with vascular dementia differed from that of all other groups at a statistically significant level. In the cerebral lobes, there was a statistically significant difference between the frontal and occipital cortices. Conclusions: We believe the results support the hypothesis that raspberries are a sign of angiogenesis in the adult brain. It is pertinent to discuss possible proangiogenic stimuli, including brain ischaemia (such as mild hypoperfusion due to a combination of small vessel disease and transient hypotension), neuroinflammation and protein pathology.


External organisations
  • Lund University
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Neurology


  • Alzheimer's disease, brain ischaemia, frontotemporal lobar degeneration, neovascularization, pathologic, neovascularization, physiologic, vascular dementia
Original languageEnglish
JournalNeuropathology and Applied Neurobiology
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 2019
Publication categoryResearch