Howard J Rosen

University of California, San Francisco, San Francisco, California, United States

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Publications (175)986.75 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Objective: To characterize the cognitive and neuropsychiatric symptoms of patients with behavioral variant frontotemporal dementia (bvFTD) over the natural course of the disease. Methods: We examined the initial and subsequent neuropsychological test performance and neuropsychiatric symptoms in a large cohort of patients with bvFTD (n = 204) across progressive stages of disease as measured by the Clinical Dementia Rating (CDR). We also compared cognitive and neuropsychiatric impairments of patients with bvFTD to those of an age-matched cohort with Alzheimer disease (AD) dementia (n = 674). Results: At the earliest stage (CDR = 0.5), patients with bvFTD had profound neuropsychiatric disturbances, insensitivity to errors, slower response times, and poor naming, with intact attention span, memory, and facial affect naming. Tests continuing to show progressive, statistically significant stepwise declines after the CDR = 1 stage included free recall, visuoconstruction, set-shifting, error insensitivity, semantic fluency, design fluency, emotion naming, calculations, confrontation naming, syntax comprehension, and verbal agility. At CDR = 0.5, patients with bvFTD significantly outperformed patients with AD in episodic memory and were faster in set-shifting, while scoring quantitatively worse in lexical fluency, emotion naming, and error sensitivity. The overall rate of disease progression in bvFTD was more rapid than in AD. Conclusion: There are distinct patterns of cognitive deficits differentiating the earlier and later disease stages in bvFTD, with the pattern of cognitive decline revealing in greater detail the natural history of the disease. These cognitive symptoms are readily apparent clinical markers of dysfunction in the principal brain networks known to undergo molecular and anatomical changes in bvFTD, thus are important indicators of the evolving pathology in individual patients.
    No preview · Article · Jan 2016 · Neurology
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    ABSTRACT: Genome-wide association studies of 146 plasma protein levels in 818 individuals revealed 56 genome-wide significant associations (28 novel) with 47 analytes. Loci associated with plasma levels of 39 proteins tested have been previously associated with various complex traits such as heart disease, inflammatory bowel disease, Type 2 diabetes, and multiple sclerosis. These data suggest that these plasma protein levels may constitute informative endophenotypes for these complex traits. We found three potential pleiotropic genes: ABO for plasma SELE and ACE levels, FUT2 for CA19-9 and CEA plasma levels, and APOE for ApoE and CRP levels. We also found multiple independent signals in loci associated with plasma levels of ApoH, CA19-9, FetuinA, IL6r, and LPa. Our study highlights the power of biological traits for genetic studies to identify genetic variants influencing clinically relevant traits, potential pleiotropic effects, and complex disease associations in the same locus.
    Full-text · Article · Jan 2016 · Scientific Reports
  • Peter Pressman · Howard J. Rosen
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    ABSTRACT: The frontal lobes are responsible for many of the aspects of cognition that seem uniquely human, including aspects of planning, language, emotional control, and personality. Disorders of the frontal lobes take many forms, but ultimately their impact on our cognition and behavior depends on their location and how they disrupt normal neuronal functioning. This chapter reviews the neuroanatomy of the frontal lobes as relevant to movement, attention, memory, executive functioning, language, emotion, motivation, and social behavior. The disruptive influences of different neurological disorders illustrate the significance of frontal brain regions.
    No preview · Chapter · Dec 2015
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    ABSTRACT: Current research is investigating the potential utility of longitudinal measurement of brain structure as a marker of drug effect in clinical trials for neurodegenerative disease. Recent studies in Alzheimer's disease (AD) have shown that measurement of change in empirically derived regions of interest (ROIs) allows more reliable measurement of change over time compared with regions chosen a-priori based on known effects of AD on brain anatomy. Frontotemporal lobar degeneration (FTLD) is a devastating neurodegenerative disorder for which there are no approved treatments. The goal of this study was to identify an empirical ROI that maximizes the effect size for the annual rate of brain atrophy in FTLD compared with healthy age matched controls, and to estimate the effect size and associated power estimates for a theoretical study that would use change within this ROI as an outcome measure. Eighty six patients with FTLD were studied, including 43 who were imaged twice at 1.5 T and 43 at 3 T, along with 105 controls (37 imaged at 1.5 T and 67 at 3 T). Empirically-derived maps of change were generated separately for each field strength and included the bilateral insula, dorsolateral, medial and orbital frontal, basal ganglia and lateral and inferior temporal regions. The extent of regions included in the 3 T map was larger than that in the 1.5 T map. At both field strengths, the effect sizes for imaging were larger than for any clinical measures. At 3 T, the effect size for longitudinal change measured within the empirically derived ROI was larger than the effect sizes derived from frontal lobe, temporal lobe or whole brain ROIs. The effect size derived from the data-driven 1.5 T map was smaller than at 3 T, and was not larger than the effect size derived from a-priori ROIs. It was estimated that measurement of longitudinal change using 1.5 T MR systems requires approximately a 3-fold increase in sample size to obtain effect sizes equivalent to those seen at 3 T. While the results should be confirmed in additional datasets, these results indicate that empirically derived ROIs can reduce the number of subjects needed for a longitudinal study of drug effects in FTLD compared with a-priori ROIs. Field strength may have a significant impact on the utility of imaging for measuring longitudinal change.
    No preview · Article · Aug 2015 · Clinical neuroimaging
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    ABSTRACT: A 'frontal variant of Alzheimer's disease' has been described in patients with predominant behavioural or dysexecutive deficits caused by Alzheimer's disease pathology. The description of this rare Alzheimer's disease phenotype has been limited to case reports and small series, and many clinical, neuroimaging and neuropathological characteristics are not well understood. In this retrospective study, we included 55 patients with Alzheimer's disease with a behavioural-predominant presentation (behavioural Alzheimer's disease) and a neuropathological diagnosis of high-likelihood Alzheimer's disease (n = 17) and/or biomarker evidence of Alzheimer's disease pathology (n = 44). In addition, we included 29 patients with autopsy/biomarker-defined Alzheimer's disease with a dysexecutive-predominant syndrome (dysexecutive Alzheimer's disease). We performed structured chart reviews to ascertain clinical features. First symptoms were more often cognitive (behavioural Alzheimer's disease: 53%; dysexecutive Alzheimer's disease: 83%) than behavioural (behavioural Alzheimer's disease: 25%; dysexecutive Alzheimer's disease: 3%). Apathy was the most common behavioural feature, while hyperorality and perseverative/compulsive behaviours were less prevalent. Fifty-two per cent of patients with behavioural Alzheimer's disease met diagnostic criteria for possible behavioural-variant frontotemporal dementia. Overlap between behavioural and dysexecutive Alzheimer's disease was modest (9/75 patients). Sixty per cent of patients with behavioural Alzheimer's disease and 40% of those with the dysexecutive syndrome carried at least one APOE ε4 allele. We also compared neuropsychological test performance and brain atrophy (applying voxel-based morphometry) with matched autopsy/biomarker-defined typical (amnestic-predominant) Alzheimer's disease (typical Alzheimer's disease, n = 58), autopsy-confirmed/Alzheimer's disease biomarker-negative behavioural variant frontotemporal dementia (n = 59), and controls (n = 61). Patients with behavioural Alzheimer's disease showed worse memory scores than behavioural variant frontotemporal dementia and did not differ from typical Alzheimer's disease, while executive function composite scores were lower compared to behavioural variant frontotemporal dementia and typical Alzheimer's disease. Voxel-wise contrasts between behavioural and dysexecutive Alzheimer's disease patients and controls revealed marked atrophy in bilateral temporoparietal regions and only limited atrophy in the frontal cortex. In direct comparison with behavioural and those with dysexecutive Alzheimer's disease, patients with behavioural variant frontotemporal dementia showed more frontal atrophy and less posterior involvement, whereas patients with typical Alzheimer's disease were slightly more affected posteriorly and showed less frontal atrophy (P < 0.001 uncorrected). Among 24 autopsied behavioural Alzheimer's disease/dysexecutive Alzheimer's disease patients, only two had primary co-morbid FTD-spectrum pathology (progressive supranuclear palsy). In conclusion, behavioural Alzheimer's disease presentations are characterized by a milder and more restricted behavioural profile than in behavioural variant frontotemporal dementia, co-occurrence of memory dysfunction and high APOE ε4 prevalence. Dysexecutive Alzheimer's disease presented as a primarily cognitive phenotype with minimal behavioural abnormalities and intermediate APOE ε4 prevalence. Both behavioural Alzheimer's disease and dysexecutive Alzheimer's disease presentations are distinguished by temporoparietal-predominant atrophy. Based on the relative sparing of frontal grey matter, we propose to redefine these clinical syndromes as 'the behavioural/dysexecutive variant of Alzheimer's disease' rather than frontal variant Alzheimer's disease. Further work is needed to determine whether behavioural and dysexecutive-predominant presentations of Alzheimer's disease represent distinct phenotypes or a single continuum. © The Author (2015). Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Guarantors of Brain. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email:
    Full-text · Article · Jul 2015 · Brain

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    ABSTRACT: Patients with frontotemporal lobar degeneration (FTLD) can show superimposed amyloid pathology, though the impact of amyloid on the clinical presentation of FTLD is not well characterized. This cross-sectional case-control study compared clinical features, fluorodeoxyglucose-positron emission tomography metabolism and gray matter volume loss in 30 patients with familial FTLD in whom amyloid status was confirmed with autopsy or Pittsburgh compound B-PET. Compared to the amyloid-negative patients, the amyloid-positive patients performed significantly worse on several cognitive tests and showed hypometabolism and volume loss in more temporoparietal regions. Our results suggest that in FTLD amyloid positivity is associated with a more Alzheimer's disease-like pattern of neurodegeneration.
    No preview · Article · Jun 2015 · Neurocase
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    ABSTRACT: Importance Amyloid-β positron emission tomography (PET) imaging allows in vivo detection of fibrillar plaques, a core neuropathological feature of Alzheimer disease (AD). Its diagnostic utility is still unclear because amyloid plaques also occur in patients with non–AD dementia.Objective To use individual participant data meta-analysis to estimate the prevalence of amyloid positivity on PET in a wide variety of dementia syndromes.Data Sources The MEDLINE and Web of Science databases were searched from January 2004 to April 2015 for amyloid PET studies.Study Selection Case reports and studies on neurological or psychiatric diseases other than dementia were excluded. Corresponding authors of eligible cohorts were invited to provide individual participant data.Data Extraction and Synthesis Data were provided for 1359 participants with clinically diagnosed AD and 538 participants with non–AD dementia. The reference groups were 1849 healthy control participants (with amyloid PET) and an independent sample of 1369 AD participants (with autopsy data).Main Outcomes and Measures Estimated prevalence of positive amyloid PET scans according to diagnosis, age, and apolipoprotein E (APOE) ε4 status, using the generalized estimating equations method.Results The likelihood of amyloid positivity was associated with age and APOE ε4 status. In AD dementia, the prevalence of amyloid positivity decreased from age 50 to 90 years in APOE ε4 noncarriers (86% [95% CI, 73%-94%] at 50 years to 68% [95% CI, 57%-77%] at 90 years; n = 377) and to a lesser degree in APOE ε4 carriers (97% [95% CI, 92%-99%] at 50 years to 90% [95% CI, 83%-94%] at 90 years; n = 593; P < .01). Similar associations of age and APOE ε4 with amyloid positivity were observed in participants with AD dementia at autopsy. In most non–AD dementias, amyloid positivity increased with both age (from 60 to 80 years) and APOE ε4 carriership (dementia with Lewy bodies: carriers [n = 16], 63% [95% CI, 48%-80%] at 60 years to 83% [95% CI, 67%-92%] at 80 years; noncarriers [n = 18], 29% [95% CI, 15%-50%] at 60 years to 54% [95% CI, 30%-77%] at 80 years; frontotemporal dementia: carriers [n = 48], 19% [95% CI, 12%-28%] at 60 years to 43% [95% CI, 35%-50%] at 80 years; noncarriers [n = 160], 5% [95% CI, 3%-8%] at 60 years to 14% [95% CI, 11%-18%] at 80 years; vascular dementia: carriers [n = 30], 25% [95% CI, 9%-52%] at 60 years to 64% [95% CI, 49%-77%] at 80 years; noncarriers [n = 77], 7% [95% CI, 3%-18%] at 60 years to 29% [95% CI, 17%-43%] at 80 years.Conclusions and Relevance Among participants with dementia, the prevalence of amyloid positivity was associated with clinical diagnosis, age, and APOE genotype. These findings indicate the potential clinical utility of amyloid imaging for differential diagnosis in early-onset dementia and to support the clinical diagnosis of participants with AD dementia and noncarrier APOE ε4 status who are older than 70 years.
    Full-text · Article · May 2015 · JAMA The Journal of the American Medical Association
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    ABSTRACT: Amyloid-β, a hallmark of Alzheimer's disease, begins accumulating up to two decades before the onset of dementia, and can be detected in vivo applying amyloid-β positron emission tomography tracers such as carbon-11-labelled Pittsburgh compound-B. A variety of thresholds have been applied in the literature to define Pittsburgh compound-B positron emission tomography positivity, but the ability of these thresholds to detect early amyloid-β deposition is unknown, and validation studies comparing Pittsburgh compound-B thresholds to post-mortem amyloid burden are lacking. In this study we first derived thresholds for amyloid positron emission tomography positivity using Pittsburgh compound-B positron emission tomography in 154 cognitively normal older adults with four complementary approaches: (i) reference values from a young control group aged between 20 and 30 years; (ii) a Gaussian mixture model that assigned each subject a probability of being amyloid-β-positive or amyloid-β-negative based on Pittsburgh compound-B index uptake; (iii) a k-means cluster approach that clustered subjects into amyloid-β-positive or amyloid-β-negative based on Pittsburgh compound-B uptake in different brain regions (features); and (iv) an iterative voxel-based analysis that further explored the spatial pattern of early amyloid-β positron emission tomography signal. Next, we tested the sensitivity and specificity of the derived thresholds in 50 individuals who underwent Pittsburgh compound-B positron emission tomography during life and brain autopsy (mean time positron emission tomography to autopsy 3.1 ± 1.8 years). Amyloid at autopsy was classified using Consortium to Establish a Registry for Alzheimer's Disease (CERAD) criteria, unadjusted for age. The analytic approaches yielded low thresholds (standard uptake value ratiolow = 1.21, distribution volume ratiolow = 1.08) that represent the earliest detectable Pittsburgh compound-B signal, as well as high thresholds (standard uptake value ratiohigh = 1.40, distribution volume ratiohigh = 1.20) that are more conservative in defining Pittsburgh compound-B positron emission tomography positivity. In voxel-wise contrasts, elevated Pittsburgh compound-B retention was first noted in the medial frontal cortex, then the precuneus, lateral frontal and parietal lobes, and finally the lateral temporal lobe. When compared to post-mortem amyloid burden, low proposed thresholds were more sensitive than high thresholds (sensitivities: distribution volume ratiolow 81.0%, standard uptake value ratiolow 83.3%; distribution volume ratiohigh 61.9%, standard uptake value ratiohigh 62.5%) for CERAD moderate-to-frequent neuritic plaques, with similar specificity (distribution volume ratiolow 95.8%; standard uptake value ratiolow, distribution volume ratiohigh and standard uptake value ratiohigh 100.0%). A receiver operator characteristic analysis identified optimal distribution volume ratio (1.06) and standard uptake value ratio (1.20) thresholds that were nearly identical to the a priori distribution volume ratiolow and standard uptake value ratiolow. In summary, we found that frequently applied thresholds for Pittsburgh compound-B positivity (typically at or above distribution volume ratiohigh and standard uptake value ratiohigh) are overly stringent in defining amyloid positivity. Lower thresholds in this study resulted in higher sensitivity while not compromising specificity. © The Author (2015). Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Guarantors of Brain. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email:
    No preview · Article · May 2015 · Brain
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    ABSTRACT: OBJECTIVE: To determine rates of regional brain atrophy in progressive supranuclear palsy (PSP) and corticobasal degeneration (CBD) over 6 months and 1 year. BACKGROUND: Previous cross-sectional volumetric MRI studies of PSP have demonstrated profound brainstem and frontal cortical atrophy. CBD shows more widespread dorsal frontoparietal atrophy with less brainstem involvement. The regional patterns of volume loss over time in these populations have not yet been fully examined, particularly over 6 months. DESIGN/METHODS: T1-weighted structural MR images from PSP (total n=48), CBD (total n=27), and normal control (NC) (total n=47) groups were acquired at 3T and processed using a novel longitudinal pipeline implemented in SPM12 to determine changes in cortical and subcortical volumes. Participants were drawn from the 4 Repeat Tauopathy Neuroimaging Initiative (4RTNI) multicenter study, and results were compared to PSP data from the AL-108-231 multicenter trial (total PSP n=226; NC n=102). Reported changes were significant as compared to NC (p<0.05, FWE corrected). RESULTS: Over 6 months, PSP regional brain volume loss was greatest in midbrain, whereas CBD had more prominent volume loss in superior frontoparietal white matter. Over 1 year, PSP showed greatest volume loss in pons, midbrain, and superior cerebellar peduncle, whereas CBD showed modest brainstem atrophy with more pronounced frontoparietal white and gray matter changes. An independent dataset, the AL-108-231 PSP trial cohort, showed nearly identical patterns and magnitudes of atrophy to 4RTNI over 1 year. CONCLUSIONS: Progressive brain atrophy is measureable in CBD and PSP over 6 months and 1 year and resembles atrophy patterns seen in cross-sectional studies. The reproducibility of longitudinal brain atrophy measurements from two independent PSP data sets and their sensitivity to change over 6 months support their utility as outcome measures in clinical trials of tau-directed therapies.
    No preview · Conference Paper · Apr 2015
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    ABSTRACT: We assessed the diagnostic utility of 3 CSF biomarkers— 14-3-3 protein, total tau (T-tau), and neuron-specific enolase (NSE)—from the same lumbar puncture to dis- tinguish between participants with neuropathologically confirmed sporadic Creutzfeldt- Jakob disease (sCJD, n 5 57) and controls with nonprion rapidly progressive dementia (npRPD, n 5 41). Measures of diagnostic accuracy, sensitivity, specificity, positive pre- dictive value, and negative predictive value, as well as logistic regression and area under the receiver operator curve (AUC), were used to assess the ability of these CSF bio- markers, alone or concomitantly, to predict diagnosis. In a subcohort with available MRI (sCJD n 5 57, npRPD 5 32), we compared visual assessment of diffusion- weighted imaging MRI sequences to these CSF biomarkers. MRI was the best predictor, with an AUC of 0.97 (confidence interval [CI] 0.92–1.00) and a diagnostic accuracy of 97% (CI 90%–100%). Of the CSF biomarkers, T-tau had a higher diagnostic accuracy (79.6%) than 14-3-3 (70.4%, CI for difference 8.7%, 9.7%; p 5 0.048) or NSE (71.4%, CI for difference 7.6%, 8.7%; p 5 0.03).
    No preview · Article · Apr 2015 · Neurology: Clinical Practice (Print)
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    ABSTRACT: Studying ethnically diverse groups is important for furthering our understanding of biological mechanisms of disease that may vary across human populations. The ε4 allele of apolipoprotein E (APOE ε4) is a well-established risk factor for Alzheimer's disease (AD), and may confer anatomic and functional effects years before clinical signs of cognitive decline are observed. The allele frequency of APOE ε4 varies both across and within populations, and the size of the effect it confers for dementia risk may be affected by other factors. Our objective was to investigate the role APOE ε4 plays in moderating brain volume in cognitively normal Chinese older adults, compared to older white Americans. We hypothesized that carrying APOE ε4 would be associated with reduced brain volume and that the magnitude of this effect would be different between ethnic groups. We performed whole brain analysis of structural MRIs from Chinese living in America (n = 41) and Shanghai (n = 30) and compared them to white Americans (n = 71). We found a significant interaction effect of carrying APOE ε4 and being Chinese. The APOE ε4xChinese interaction was associated with lower volume in bilateral cuneus and left middle frontal gyrus (Puncorrected<0.001), with suggestive findings in right entorhinal cortex and left hippocampus (Puncorrected<0.01), all regions that are associated with neurodegeneration in AD. After correction for multiple testing, the left cuneus remained significantly associated with the interaction effect (PFWE = 0.05). Our study suggests there is a differential effect of APOE ε4 on brain volume in Chinese versus white cognitively normal elderly adults. This represents a novel finding that, if verified in larger studies, has implications for how biological, environmental and/or lifestyle factors may modify APOE ε4 effects on the brain in diverse populations.
    Full-text · Article · Mar 2015 · PLoS ONE
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    ABSTRACT: The term early-onset Alzheimer's disease (EOAD) identifies patients who meet criteria for AD, but show onset of symptoms before the age of 65. We map progression of gray matter atrophy in EOAD patients compared to late-onset AD (LOAD). T1-weighted MRI scans were obtained at diagnosis and one-year follow-up from 15 EOAD, 10 LOAD, and 38 age-matched controls. Voxel-based and tensor-based morphometry were used, respectively, to assess the baseline and progression of atrophy. At baseline, EOAD patients already showed a widespread atrophy in temporal, parietal, occipital, and frontal cortices. After one year, EOAD had atrophy progression in medial temporal and medial parietal cortices. At baseline, LOAD patients showed atrophy in the medial temporal regions only, and, after one year, an extensive pattern of atrophy progression in the same neocortical cortices of EOAD. Although atrophy mainly involved different lateral neocortical or medial temporal hubs at baseline, it eventually progressed along the same brain default-network regions in both groups. The cortical region showing a significant progression in both groups was the medial precuneus/posterior cingulate.
    No preview · Article · Mar 2015 · Journal of Alzheimer's disease: JAD
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    ABSTRACT: Background: Measures of neocortical amyloid burden (NAB) identify individuals who are at substantially greater risk of developing Alzheimer's disease (AD). Blood-based biomarkers predicting NAB would have great utility for the enrichment of AD clinical trials, including large-scale prevention trials. Methods: Nontargeted proteomic discovery was applied to 78 subjects from the Australian Imaging, Biomarkers and Lifestyle Flagship Study of Ageing with a range of NAB values. Technical and independent replications were performed by immunoassay. Results: Seventeen discovery candidates were selected for technical replication. α2-Macroglobulin, fibrinogen γ-chain (FGG), and complement factor H-related protein 1 were confirmed to be associated with NAB. In an independent cohort, FGG plasma levels combined with age predicted NAB had a sensitivity of 59% and specificity of 78%. Conclusion: A single blood protein, FGG, combined with age, was shown to relate to NAB and therefore could have potential for enrichment of clinical trial populations.
    Full-text · Article · Mar 2015
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    ABSTRACT: Previous studies have indicated a heritable component of the etiology of neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer disease (AD), frontotemporal dementia (FTD), and progressive supranuclear palsy (PSP). However, few have examined the contribution of low-frequency coding variants on a genome-wide level. To identify low-frequency coding variants that affect susceptibility to AD, FTD, and PSP. We used the Illumina HumanExome BeadChip array to genotype a large number of variants (most of which are low-frequency coding variants) in a cohort of patients with neurodegenerative disease (224 with AD, 168 with FTD, and 48 with PSP) and in 224 control individuals without dementia enrolled between 2005-2012 from multiple centers participating in the Genetic Investigation in Frontotemporal Dementia and Alzheimer's Disease (GIFT) Study. An additional multiancestral replication cohort of 240 patients with AD and 240 controls without dementia was used to validate suggestive findings. Variant-level association testing and gene-based testing were performed. Statistical association of genetic variants with clinical diagnosis of AD, FTD, and PSP. Genetic variants typed by the exome array explained 44%, 53%, and 57% of the total phenotypic variance of AD, FTD, and PSP, respectively. An association with the known AD gene ABCA7 was replicated in several ancestries (discovery P = .0049, European P = .041, African American P = .043, and Asian P = .027), suggesting that exonic variants within this gene modify AD susceptibility. In addition, 2 suggestive candidate genes, DYSF (P = 5.53 × 10-5) and PAXIP1 (P = 2.26 × 10-4), were highlighted in patients with AD and differentially expressed in AD brain. Corroborating evidence from other exome array studies and gene expression data points toward potential involvement of these genes in the pathogenesis of AD. Low-frequency coding variants with intermediate effect size may account for a significant fraction of the genetic susceptibility to AD and FTD. Furthermore, we found evidence that coding variants in the known susceptibility gene ABCA7, as well as candidate genes DYSF and PAXIP1, confer risk for AD.
    No preview · Article · Feb 2015 · JAMA Neurology
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    ABSTRACT: The present study investigated the pattern of longitudinal changes in cognition and anatomy in three variants of primary progressive aphasia (PPA). Eight patients with the non-fluent variant of PPA (nfvPPA), 13 patients with the semantic variant (svPPA), seven patients with the logopenic variant (lvPPA), and 29 age-matched, neurologically healthy controls were included in the study. All participants underwent longitudinal MRI, neuropsychological and language testing at baseline and at a 1-year follow-up. Tenser-based morphometry (TBM) was applied to T1-weighted MRI images in order to map the progression of gray and white matter atrophy over a 1-year period. Results showed that each patient group was characterized by a specific pattern of cognitive and anatomical changes. Specifically, nfvPPA patients showed gray matter atrophy progression in the left frontal and subcortical areas as well as a decline in motor speech and executive functions; svPPA patients presented atrophy progression in the medial and lateral temporal lobe and decline in semantic memory abilities; and lvPPA patients showed atrophy progression in lateral/posterior temporal and medial parietal regions with a decline in memory, sentence repetition and calculations. In addition, in all three variants, the white matter fibers underlying the abovementioned cortical areas underwent significant volume contraction over a 1-year period. Overall, these results indicate that the three PPA variants present distinct patterns of neuroanatomical contraction, which reflect their clinical and cognitive progression.
    Full-text · Article · Jan 2015 · Clinical neuroimaging

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8k Citations
986.75 Total Impact Points

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  • 2001-2015
    • University of California, San Francisco
      • • Department of Neurology
      • • Memory and Aging Center
      • • Department of Medicine
      San Francisco, California, United States
  • 2013
    • University College London
      • Department of Neurodegenerative Disease
      London, ENG, United Kingdom
  • 2006-2012
    • University of California, Berkeley
      • Department of Psychology
      Berkeley, California, United States
  • 2008
    • San Francisco VA Medical Center
      San Francisco, California, United States
  • 2007
    • University of California, San Diego
      • Department of Psychiatry
      San Diego, California, United States
  • 2005
    • University of Toronto
      Toronto, Ontario, Canada
  • 2002
    • University of California, Davis
      Davis, California, United States