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Brain Struct Funct. 2015 Mar;220(2):745-62. doi: 10.1007/s00429-013-0681-9. Epub 2013 Dec 1.

Differentially disrupted functional connectivity of the subregions of the inferior parietal lobule in Alzheimer's disease.

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1
Department of Radiology, Xuanwu Hospital of Capital Medical University, Beijing, 100053, China.

Abstract

Recent research on Alzheimer's disease (AD) has shown that the altered structure and function of the inferior parietal lobule (IPL) provides a promising indicator of AD. However, little is known about the functional connectivity of the IPL subregions in AD subjects. In this study, we collected resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging data from 32 AD patients and 38 healthy controls. We defined seven subregions of the IPL according to probabilistic cytoarchitectonic atlases and mapped the whole-brain resting-state functional connectivity for each subregion. Using hierarchical clustering analysis, we identified three distinct functional connectivity patterns of the IPL subregions: the anterior IPL connected with the sensorimotor network (SMN) and salience network (SN); the central IPL had connectivity with the executive-control network (ECN); and the posterior IPL exhibited connections with the default-mode network (DMN). Compared with the controls, the AD patients demonstrated distinct disruptive patterns of the IPL subregional connectivity with these different networks (SMN, SN, ECN and DMN), which suggests the impairment of the functional integration in the IPL. Notably, we also observed that the IPL subregions showed increased connectivity with the posterior part of the DMN in AD patients, which potentially indicates a compensatory mechanism. Finally, these abnormal IPL functional connectivity changes were closely associated with cognitive performance. Collectively, we show that the subregions of the IPL present distinct functional connectivity patterns with various functional networks that are differentially impaired in AD patients. Our results also suggest that functional disconnection and compensation in the IPL may coexist in AD.

PMID:
24292325
DOI:
10.1007/s00429-013-0681-9
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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