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Radiology. 2010 Aug;256(2):598-606. doi: 10.1148/radiol.10091701.

Resting brain connectivity: changes during the progress of Alzheimer disease.

Author information

1
Department of Radiology, Jiangsu Key Laboratory of Molecule Imaging and Functional Imaging, Medical School of Southeast University, 87 Dingjiaqiao Road, Nanjing 210009, China.

Abstract

PURPOSE:

To investigate alterations in functional connectivity in the resting brain networks in healthy elderly volunteers and patients with mild, moderate, or severe Alzheimer Disease (AD).

MATERIALS AND METHODS:

This study was approved by the institutional ethics committee, and informed consent was obtained. Forty-six patients with AD and 16 healthy elderly volunteers were prospectively examined. Resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging was used to detect alterations in posterior cingulate cortex (PCC) functional connectivity through a comparison of the healthy control group with three separate AD groups-mild, moderate, and severe AD. A temporal correlation method was used to obtain PCC connectivity maps.

RESULTS:

Dissociated functional connectivity between the PCC and a set of regions, including the visual cortices bilaterally, the inferior temporal cortex, the hippocampus, and especially the medial prefrontal cortex and the precuneus and/or cuneus, was observed in all AD groups. The disruption of connectivity intensified as the stage of AD progression increased. There were also regions that exhibited increased connectivity; these regions extended from left lateralized frontoparietal regions and spread to bilateral frontoparietal regions along with AD progression.

CONCLUSION:

Changes in PCC functional connectivity comprised bidirectional alterations in the resting networks in AD-affected brains, and the impaired resting functional connectivity seemed to change with AD progression. Therefore, alterations in functional connectivity in the default mode network might play a role in the progression of AD.

PMID:
20656843
DOI:
10.1148/radiol.10091701
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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