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Neuroimage. 2008 Jul 15;41(4):1177-83. doi: 10.1016/j.neuroimage.2008.03.039. Epub 2008 Apr 4.

Reduced cortical thickness in hippocampal subregions among cognitively normal apolipoprotein E e4 carriers.

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  • 1David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, Center for Cognitive Neurosciences, Semel Institute, 760 Westwood Plaza B8-169, Los Angeles, CA 90095, USA.

Abstract

Our objective was to investigate whether asymptomatic carriers of apolipoprotein E epsilon4 [APOE-4] demonstrate pathological differences and atrophy in medial temporal lobe (MTL) subregions. We measured cortical thickness and volume in MTL subregions (hippocampal CA fields 1, 2 and 3; dentate gyrus; entorhinal cortex; subiculum; perirhinal cortex; parahippocampal cortex; and fusiform gyrus) using a high-resolution in-plane (0.4x0.4 mm) MRI sequence in 30 cognitively normal volunteers (14 APOE-4 carriers, 16 non-carriers, mean age 57 years). A cortical unfolding procedure maximized the visibility of this convoluted cortex, providing cortical ribbon thickness measures throughout individual subregions of the hippocampus and surrounding cortex. APOE-4 carriers had reduced cortical thickness compared with non-carriers in entorhinal cortex (ERC) and the subiculum (Sub), but not in the main hippocampal body or perirhinal cortex. Average cortical thickness was 14.8% lower (p=1.0e(- 6)) for ERC and 12.6% lower (p=6.8e(- 5)) for Sub in APOE-4 carriers. Standard volumetric measures of the same regions showed similar, but non-significant trends. Cognitively intact carriers of APOE-4 show regionally specific thinning of the cortical ribbon compared to APOE-3 carriers; cortical thickness may be a more sensitive measure of pathological differences in genetic risk subjects than standard volumetry.

PMID:
18486492
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC2601686
Free PMC Article
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