Voxel-based morphometry reveals extra-nigral atrophy patterns associated with dopamine refractory cognitive and motor impairment in parkinsonism
ABSTRACT To determine overall patterns of brain atrophy associated with memory, executive function (EF) and dopamine non-responsive motor measures in older parkinsonian patients.
Forty-three older PD patients (>or=65 years) and matched controls underwent a neurological examination (Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale, separated into dopamine responsive and dopamine non-responsive signs) and neuropsychological testing (memory: California Verbal Learning Test (CVLT)) and a composite of index of executive function (EF): Stroop Interference, Trail Making Test Part B, and digit ordering. All underwent volumetric MRI scans analyzed using voxel-based morphometry (VBM). Group comparisons, and the correlations between MRI gray and white matter volume and motor and cognitive measures were controlled for age, sex and intracranial volume. Cerebellar volume was independently measured using a validated extraction method.
Patients and controls were matched for demographics and global cognitive measures. VBM indicated significant gray matter (GM) atrophy in the cerebellum in PD and was confirmed independently. Poor memory was associated with GM atrophy in the left (uncus, middle temporal and fusiform gyri) and right temporal lobes and left putamen. Dopamine non-responsive motor signs and EF were associated with caudate atrophy. EF was also associated with GM atrophy in the middle temporal gyri, the left precuneus and cerebellum.
Cortical and striatal atrophy were associated with dopamine non-responsive motor signs and cognitive impairment and provide a morphologic correlate for progression of PD. Cerebellar atrophy was found in older PD patients.
SourceAvailable from: David E Vaillancourt[Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Parkinson's disease (PD) and the parkinsonian variant of multiple system atrophy (MSAp) are neurodegenerative disorders that can be difficult to differentiate clinically. This study provides the first characterization of the patterns of task-related functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) changes across the whole brain in MSAp. We used fMRI during a precision grip force task and also performed voxel-based morphometry (VBM) on T1-weighted images in MSAp patients, PD patients, and healthy controls. All groups were matched on age, and the patient groups had comparable motor symptom durations and severities. There were three main findings. First, MSAp and PD had reduced fMRI activation in motor control areas, including the basal ganglia, thalamus, insula, primary sensorimotor and prefrontal cortices, and cerebellum compared with controls. Second, there were no activation differences among the disease groups in the basal ganglia, thalamus, insula, or primary sensorimotor cortices, but PD had more extensive activation deficits throughout the cerebrum compared with MSAp and controls. Third, VBM revealed reduced volume in the basal ganglia, middle and inferior cerebellar peduncles, pons, and throughout the cerebrum in MSAp compared with controls and PD, and additionally throughout the cerebellar cortex and vermis in MSAp compared with controls. Collectively, these results provide the first evidence that fMRI activation is abnormal in the basal ganglia, cerebellum, and cerebrum in MSAp, and that a key distinguishing feature between MSAp and PD is the extensive and widespread volume loss throughout the brain in MSAp.Human Brain Mapping 03/2015; DOI:10.1002/hbm.22694 · 6.92 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Parkinson's disease (PD) is associated with abnormal synchronization in basal ganglia-thalamo-cortical loops. We tested whether early PD patients without demonstrable cognitive impairment exhibit abnormal modulation of functional connectivity at rest, while engaged in a task, or both. PD and healthy controls underwent two functional MRI scans: a resting-state scan and a Stroop Match-to-Sample task scan. Rest-task modulation of basal ganglia (BG) connectivity was tested using seed-to-voxel connectivity analysis with task and rest time series as conditions. Despite substantial overlap of BG-cortical connectivity patterns in both groups, connectivity differences between groups had clinical and behavioral correlates. During rest, stronger putamen-medial parietal and pallidum-occipital connectivity in PD than controls was associated with worse task performance and more severe PD symptoms suggesting that abnormalities in resting-state connectivity denote neural network dedifferentiation. During the executive task, PD patients showed weaker BG-cortical connectivity than controls, i.e., between caudate-supramarginal gyrus and pallidum-inferior prefrontal regions, that was related to more severe PD symptoms and worse task performance. Yet, task processing also evoked stronger striatal-cortical connectivity, specifically between caudate-prefrontal, caudate-precuneus, and putamen-motor/premotor regions in PD relative to controls, which was related to less severe PD symptoms and better performance on the Stroop task. Thus, stronger task-evoked striatal connectivity in PD demonstrated compensatory neural network enhancement to meet task demands and improve performance levels. fMRI-based network analysis revealed that despite resting-state BG network compromise in PD, BG connectivity to prefrontal, premotor, and precuneus regions can be adequately invoked during executive control demands enabling near normal task performance.Brain Imaging and Behavior 10/2014; DOI:10.1007/s11682-014-9317-9 · 3.39 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: HTRA2, a serine protease in the intermembrane space, has important functions in mitochondrial stress signaling while its abnormal activity may contribute to the development of Parkinson's disease. Mice with a missense or null mutation of Htra2 fail to thrive, suffer striatal neuronal loss, and a parkinsonian phenotype that leads to death at 30-40 days of age. While informative, these mouse models cannot separate neural contributions from systemic effects due to the complex phenotypes of HTRA2 deficiency. Hence, we developed mice carrying a Htra2-floxed allele to query the consequences of tissue-specific HTRA2 deficiency. We found that mice with neural-specific deletion of Htra2 exhibited atrophy of the thymus and spleen, cessation to gain weight past postnatal (P) day 18, neurological symptoms including ataxia and complete penetrance of premature death by P40. Histologically, increased apoptosis was detected in the cerebellum, and to a lesser degree in the striatum and the entorhinal cortex, from P25. Even earlier at P20, mitochondria in the cerebella already exhibited abnormal morphology, including swelling, vesiculation, and fragmentation of the cristae. Furthermore, the onset of these structural anomalies was accompanied by defective processing of OPA1, a key molecule for mitochondrial fusion and cristae remodeling, leading to depletion of the L-isoform. Together, these findings suggest that HTRA2 is essential for maintenance of the mitochondrial integrity in neurons. Without functional HTRA2, a lifespan as short as 40 days accumulates a large quantity of dysfunctional mitochondria that contributes to the demise of mutant mice.PLoS ONE 12/2014; 9(12):e115789. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0115789 · 3.53 Impact Factor