JOURNAL ARTICLE

Impaired macromolecular protein pools in fronto-striato-thalamic circuits in type 2 diabetes revealed by magnetization transfer imaging

Shaolin Yang, Olusola Ajilore, Minjie Wu, Melissa Lamar, Anand Kumar
Diabetes 2015, 64 (1): 183-92
25092675
Previous research has shown that type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) is associated with white matter microstructural changes, cognitive impairment, and decreased resting-state functional connectivity and spontaneous brain activity. This study used magnetization transfer imaging to examine, for the first time, the integrity of macromolecular protein pools in fronto-striato-thalamic circuits and its clinical and cognitive correlates in patients with T2DM. T2DM patients without mood disorders (n = 20, aged 65.05 ± 11.95 years) and healthy control subjects (HCs; n = 26, aged 62.92 ± 12.71 years) were recruited. Nodes of fronto-striato-thalamic circuits-head of the caudate nucleus (hCaud), putamen, globus pallidus, thalamus-and four cortical regions-rostral and dorsal anterior cingulate cortex, dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, and lateral orbitofrontal cortex-were examined. Compared with HCs, patients with T2DM had significantly lower magnetization transfer ratio (MTR) in bilateral anterior cingulate and hCaud. Reduced MTRs in the above regions showed correlations with T2DM-related clinical measures, including hemoglobin A1c level and vascular risk factors, and neuropsychological task performance in the domains of learning and memory, executive function, and attention and information processing. The impaired biophysical integrity of brain macromolecular protein pools and their local microenvironments in T2DM patients may provide insights into the neurological pathophysiology underlying diabetes-associated clinical and cognitive deficits.

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