Journal Article
Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
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Memory impairment in Amyloidβ-status Alzheimer's disease is associated with a reduction in CA1 and dentate gyrus volume: In vivo MRI at 7T.

NeuroImage 2024 April 16
INTRODUCTION: In Alzheimer's disease (AD), early diagnosis facilitates treatment options and leads to beneficial outcomes for patients, their carers and the healthcare system. The neuropsychological battery of the Uniform Data Set (UDSNB3.0) assesses cognition in ageing and dementia, by measuring scores across different cognitive domains such as attention, memory, processing speed, executive function and language. However, its neuroanatomical correlates have not been investigated using 7 Tesla MRI (7T MRI).

METHODS: We used 7T MRI to investigate the correlations between hippocampal subfield volumes and the UDSNB3.0 in 24 individuals with Amyloidβ-status AD and 18 age-matched controls, with respective age ranges of 60 (42-76) and 62 (52-79) years. AD participants with a Medial Temporal Atrophy scale of higher than 2 on 3T MRI were excluded from the study.

RESULTS: A significant difference in the entire hippocampal volume was observed in the AD group compared to healthy controls (HC), primarily influenced by CA1, the largest hippocampal subfield. Notably, no significant difference in whole brain volume between the groups implied that hippocampal volume loss was not merely reflective of overall brain atrophy. UDSNB3.0 cognitive scores showed significant differences between AD and HC, particularly in Memory, Language, and Visuospatial domains. The volume of the Dentate Gyrus (DG) showed a significant association with the Memory and Executive domain scores in AD patients as assessed by the UDSNB3.0.. The data also suggested a non-significant trend for CA1 volume associated with UDSNB3.0 Memory, Executive, and Language domain scores in AD. In a reassessment focusing on hippocampal subfields and MoCA memory subdomains in AD, associations were observed between the DG and Cued, Uncued, and Recognition Memory subscores, whereas CA1 and Tail showed associations only with Cued memory.

DISCUSSION: This study reveals differences in the hippocampal volumes measured using 7T MRI, between individuals with early symptomatic AD compared with healthy controls. This highlights the potential of 7T MRI as a valuable tool for early AD diagnosis and the real-time monitoring of AD progression and treatment efficacy.

CLINICALTRIALS: GOV: ID NCT04992975 (Clinicaltrial.gov 2023).

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