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Neuroradiology. 2008 Jul;50(7):605-11. doi: 10.1007/s00234-008-0379-5. Epub 2008 Apr 1.

Cerebral white matter damage in frontotemporal dementia assessed by diffusion tensor tractography.

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Department of Neurology, Graduate School of Medical Science, Kyoto Prefectural University of Medicine, Kyoto, Japan.



We used diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) to study white matter integrity in patients with frontotemporal dementia (FTD).


The subjects comprised 20 patients (9 men, 11 women) with FTD and 17 age-matched healthy controls (9 men, 8 women). Based on the data obtained from DTI, we performed tractography of the major cerebral pathways, including the pyramidal tracts, genu and splenium of the corpus callosum (CC), bilateral arcuate fasciculi (AF), inferior longitudinal fasciculi (ILF) and uncinate fasciculi (UF). We measured the values of fractional anisotropy (FA) in each fiber and statistically compared the findings in patients with those in controls.


We found a significant decrease in FA values in the selected association fibers as well as anterior fibers of the CC in the patients with FTD. The greatest decrease in mean FA of the UF was seen in advanced FTD. On the other hand, there were no significant differences in FA in the bilateral pyramidal tracts.


The features of FTD from the view point of cerebral white matter damage were revealed by tractography based on DTI. DTI is therefore considered to be a useful method, and may provide clues to elucidating the pathogenesis of FTD.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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