Longitudinal analysis of brain atrophy in Alzheimer’s disease and frontotemporal dementia

Silvia Marino, Lilla Bonanno, Viviana Lo Buono, Rosella Ciurleo, Francesco Corallo, Rosa Morabito, Gaetano Chirico, Angela Marra, Placido Bramanti

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Objectives: Alzheimer’s disease (AD) and behavioral variant frontotemporal dementia (bvFTD) are among the leading causes of early-onset dementia. This study aimed to assess the rate of whole brain atrophy by comparing bvFTD and AD. Methods: Two patients (one man with AD, and one woman with bvFTD) had neuropsychological and neuroimaging assessment by using automated techniques for cross-sectional and longitudinal atrophy measurements. Results: In the patient with AD, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) showed decreased bilateral hippocampal and mesial-temporal volume. However, conventional images showed no difference between baseline (T0) and after 1 year (T1). In the patient with bvFTD, MRI showed bilateral frontotemporal lobe atrophy and a moderate increase in atrophy between T0 and T1, particularly in the temporal lobes. A cross-sectional cerebral volume examination showed a considerable reduction in brain volume in the patient with bvFDT and a moderate reduction in the patient with AD. A longitudinal cerebral volume examination showed a lower percentage brain volume change in the patient with bvFTS compared with the patient with AD. Conclusions: Our results suggest that bvFTD has more neurodegenerative progression. MRI findings should be considered as a reliable marker of disease progression in the brain. Our findings offer potential for monitoring treatment outcomes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5019-5027
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of International Medical Research
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - Oct 1 2019



  • Alzheimer’s disease
  • brain atrophy
  • cerebral volume
  • cognitive impairment
  • frontotemporal dementia
  • magnetic resonance imaging

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Cell Biology
  • Biochemistry, medical

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