Background: The Hisayama study is a prospective cohort study of lifestyle-related diseases that commenced in 1961. Through it, a significant increasing trend in the prevalence of Alzheimer's disease has been observed over the past 18 years. Objectives: We sought to investigate the increases in brain pathology related to Alzheimer's disease using automated MATLAB morphometric analyses for quantifying tau pathology. Methods: We examined a series of autopsied cases from Hisayama residents obtained between 1998 and 2003 (group A: 203 cases), and between 2009 and 2014 (group B: 232 cases). We developed custom software in MATLAB to analyze abnormal tau deposits quantitatively. Specimens were immunostained with both anti-amyloid-β-protein and anti-phosphorylated tau antibodies. Results: Both the Consortium to Establish a Registry for Alzheimer's Disease (CERAD) criteria for senile plaques and Braak stage for NFT were higher in group B. Morphometric analyses of the hippocampi also revealed a trend toward increased tau pathology in both men and women over 80 years of age in group B. The increases were also significant when the subjects were examined independently according to high or low CERAD scores and in all levels of AD neuropathologic change according to the National Institute on Aging-Alzheimer's Association guidelines (2012). Conclusion: We revealed a recent trend of increased tauopathy in the older people, which is partly independent of amyloid-β pathology.
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