Different Patterns of Correlation between Grey and White Matter Integrity Account for Behavioral and Psychological Symptoms in Alzheimer's Disease

Elena Makovac, Laura Serra, Barbara Spanò, Giovanni Giulietti, Mario Torso, Mara Cercignani, Carlo Caltagirone, Marco Bozzali

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Behavioral disorders and psychological symptoms (BPSD) in Alzheimer's disease (AD) are known to correlate with grey matter (GM) atrophy and, as shown recently, also with white matter (WM) damage. WM damage and its relationship with GM atrophy are reported in AD, reinforcing the interpretation of the AD pathology in light of a disconnection syndrome. It remains uncertain whether this disconnection might account also for different BPSD observable in AD. Here, we tested the hypothesis of different patterns of association between WM damage of the corpus callosum (CC) and GM atrophy in AD patients exhibiting one of the following BPSD clusters: Mood (i.e., anxiety and depression; ADmood), Frontal (i.e., dishinibition and elation; ADfrontal), and Psychotic (delusions and hallucinations; ADpsychotic) related symptoms, as well as AD patients without BPSD. Overall, this study brings to light the strict relationship between WM alterations in different parts of the CC and GM atrophy in AD patients exhibiting BPSD, supporting the hypothesis that such symptoms are likely to be caused by characteristic patterns of neurodegeneration of WM and GM, rather than being a reactive response to accumulation of cognitive disabilities, and should therefore be regarded as potential markers of diagnostic and prognostic value in AD.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)591-604
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Alzheimer's Disease
Volume50
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2016

Keywords

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Alzheimer Disease
  • Atrophy
  • Brain
  • Depression
  • Female
  • Gray Matter
  • Hallucinations
  • Humans
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neuropsychological Tests
  • White Matter
  • Journal Article

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