Distance disintegration delineates the brain connectivity failure of Alzheimer's disease

Víctor Costumero, Federico d'Oleire Uquillas, Ibai Diez, Magi Andorrà, Silvia Basaia, Elisenda Bueichekú, Laura Ortiz-Terán, Vicente Belloch, Joaquin Escudero, César Ávila, Jorge Sepulcre

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Alzheimer's disease (AD) is associated with brain network dysfunction. Network-based investigations of brain connectivity have mainly focused on alterations in the strength of connectivity; however, the network breakdown in AD spectrum is a complex scenario in which multiple pathways of connectivity are affected. To integrate connectivity changes that occur under AD-related conditions, here we developed a novel metric that computes the connectivity distance between cortical regions at the voxel level (or nodes). We studied 114 individuals with mild cognitive impairment, 24 with AD, and 27 healthy controls. Results showed that areas of the default mode network, salience network, and frontoparietal network display a remarkable network separation, or greater connectivity distances, from the rest of the brain. Furthermore, this greater connectivity distance was associated with lower global cognition. Overall, the investigation of AD-related changes in paths and distances of connectivity provides a novel framework for characterizing subjects with cognitive impairment; a framework that integrates the overall network topology changes of the brain and avoids biases toward unreferenced connectivity effects.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)51-60
Number of pages10
JournalNeurobiology of Aging
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2020


  • Alzheimer's disease
  • Functional connectivity
  • Graph-theory
  • Mild Cognitive impairment
  • Optimal distance
  • Stepwise connectivity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Ageing
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Developmental Biology
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology


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