Resting state functional connectivity alterations in primary lateral sclerosis

Federica Agosta, Elisa Canu, Alberto Inuggi, Adriano Chiò, Nilo Riva, Vincenzo Silani, Andrea Calvo, Stefano Messina, Andrea Falini, Giancarlo Comi, Massimo Filippi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Resting state functional connectivity of the sensorimotor and extramotor brain networks was studied in 24 patients with primary lateral sclerosis (PLS) relative to 26 healthy controls. The relationships of RS functional connectivity with patient clinical and cognitive status and white matter tract damage (i.e., corticospinal tracts, corpus callosum, and superior longitudinal fasciculus) were investigated. Compared with controls, PLS patients showed an increased functional connectivity within the sensorimotor, frontal, and left frontoparietal networks spanning the pre- and postcentral, medial and dorsal frontal, insular, and superior temporal regions. Patients with more severe physical disability and a more rapid rate of disease progression had increased sensorimotor connectivity values. The increased functional connectivity within the frontal network was associated with executive dysfunction. In addition, higher functional connectivity correlated with greater structural damage to network-specific white matter tracts. This study shows clinically meaningful increased resting state functional connectivity in PLS.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)916-925
Number of pages10
JournalNeurobiology of Aging
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2014


  • Diffusion tensor MRI tractography
  • Functional connectivity
  • Primary lateral sclerosis
  • Resting state functional MRI
  • Sensorimotor network

ASJC Scopus subject areas

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


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