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J Magn Reson Imaging. 2011 Oct;34(4):764-73. doi: 10.1002/jmri.22662. Epub 2011 Jul 18.

Recovery of hippocampal network connectivity correlates with cognitive improvement in mild Alzheimer's disease patients treated with donepezil assessed by resting-state fMRI.

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1
Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Medicine, Medical College of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, Wisconsin 53226, USA.

Abstract

PURPOSE:

To identify the neural correlates of cognitive improvement in mild Alzheimer's disease (AD) subjects following 12 weeks of donepezil treatment.

MATERIALS AND METHODS:

Resting-state functional connectivity magnetic resonance imaging (R-fMRI) was used to measure the hippocampal functional connectivity (HFC) in 14 mild AD and 18 age-matched normal (CN) subjects. AD subjects were scanned at baseline and after donepezil treatment. CN subjects were scanned only at baseline as a reference to identify regions correlated or anticorrelated to the hippocampus. Before each scan, participants underwent cognitive, behavioral, and functional assessments.

RESULTS:

After donepezil treatment, neural correlates of cognitive improvement measured by Mini-Mental State Examination scores were identified in the left parahippocampus, dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC), and inferior frontal gyrus. Improvement in AD Assessment Scale-cognitive subscale scores correlated with the HFC changes in the left DLPFC and middle frontal gyrus. Stronger recovery in the network connectivity was associated with cognitive improvement.

CONCLUSION:

R-fMRI may provide novel insights into the brain's responses to AD treatment in clinical pharmacological trials, and also may predict clinical response.

PMID:
21769962
PMCID:
PMC3177015
DOI:
10.1002/jmri.22662
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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