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Clin Neurophysiol. 2019 Aug 28;130(11):2053-2059. doi: 10.1016/j.clinph.2019.08.018. [Epub ahead of print]

Multimodal characterization of the visual network in Huntington's disease gene carriers.

Author information

1
Huntington's Disease Centre, UCL Institute of Neurology, London, UK.
2
Department of Neurology, University Medical Center Groningen, Groningen, the Netherlands.
3
Department of Neurology, Ulm University Hospital, Ulm, Germany.
4
Department of Psychiatry, University of Iowa, Iowa City, IA, USA.
5
Sobell Department of Motor Neuroscience and Movement Disorders, University College London Institute of Neurology, Queen Square, London, UK.
6
Wellcome Trust Centre for Neuroimaging, University College London, London, UK.
7
Department of Psychiatry, University of Iowa, Iowa City, IA, USA; Department of Biostatistics, University of Iowa, Iowa City, IA, USA.
8
Department of Neurology, Leiden University Medical Centre, Leiden, the Netherlands.
9
Department of Neurology, Ulm University Hospital, Ulm, Germany. Electronic address: michael.orth@uni-ulm.de.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

A sensorimotor network structural phenotype predicted motor task performance in a previous study in Huntington's disease (HD) gene carriers. We investigated in the visual network whether structure - function - behaviour relationship patterns, and the effects of the HD mutation, extended beyond the sensorimotor network.

METHODS:

We used multimodal visual network MRI structural measures (cortical thickness and white matter connectivity), plus visual evoked potentials and task performance (Map Search; Symbol Digit Modalities Test) in healthy controls and HD gene carriers.

RESULTS:

Using principal component (PC) analysis, we identified a structure - function relationship common to both groups. PC scores differed between groups indicating white matter disorganization (higher RD, lower FA) and slower, and more disperse, VEP signal transmission (higher VEP P100 latency and lower VEP P100 amplitude) in HD than controls while task performance was similar.

CONCLUSIONS:

HD may be associated with reduced white matter organization and efficient visual network function but normal task performance.

SIGNIFICANCE:

These findings indicate that structure - function relationships in the visual network, and the effects of the HD mutation, share some commonalities with those in the sensorimotor network. However, implications for task performance differ between the two networks suggesting the influence of network specific factors.

KEYWORDS:

Principal component analysis; Structural MRI; Tractography; Visual evoked potentials

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