Parkinson's disease cognitive disorders

Some people with Parkinson's disease (PD) experience mild cognitive impairment. Feelings of distraction or disorganization can accompany cognitive impairment, along with finding it difficult to plan and accomplish tasks. It may be harder to focus in situations that divide your attention, like a group conversation.

White matter is associated with cognitive function in PD and the alterations may occur before the symptoms of the disease. Previous diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) studies lacked specificity to characterize the concrete contributions of distinct white matter tissue properties. This may lead to inconsistent conclusions about the alteration of white matter microstructure. Here, we used neurite orientation dispersion and density imaging (NODDI) and the white matter fiber clustering method to uncover local white matter microstructures in PD with mild cognitive impairment (PD-MCI). This study included 23 PD-MCI and 20 PD with normal cognition (PD-NC) and 21 healthy controls (HC). To probe specific and fine-grained differences, metrics of NODDI and DTI in white matter fiber clusters were evaluated using along-tract analysis. Our results showed that PD-MCI patients had significantly lower neurite density index (NDI) and orientation dispersion index (ODI) in white matter fiber clusters in the prefrontal region. Correlation analysis and receiver operating characteristic (ROC) analysis revealed that the diagnostic performance of NODDI-derived metrics in the cingulum bundle (2 clusters) and thalamic-frontal (2 clusters) were superior to DTI metrics. Our study provides a more specific insight to uncover local white matter abnormalities in PD-MCI, which benefit understanding the underlying mechanism of cognitive decline in PD and predicting the disease in advance 1).

The insula, consisting of functionally diverse subdivisions, plays a significant role in Parkinson's disease (PD)-related cognitive disorders. However, the functional connectivity (FC) patterns of insular subdivisions in PD remain unclear. The aim of Pan et al. is to investigate the changes in FC patterns of insular subdivisions and their relationships with cognitive domains. Three groups of participants were recruited in this study, including PD patients with mild cognitive impairment (PD-MCI, n = 25), PD patients with normal cognition (PD-NC, n = 13), and healthy controls (HCs, n = 17). Resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (rs-fMRI) was used to investigate the FC in insular subdivisions of the three groups. Moreover, all participants underwent a neuropsychological battery to assess cognition so that the relationship between altered FC and cognitive performance could be elucidated. Compared with the PD-NC group, the PD-MCI group exhibited increased FC between the left dorsal anterior insular (dAI) and the right superior parietal gyrus (SPG), and altered FC was negatively correlated with memory and executive function. Compared with the HC group, the PD-MCI group showed significantly increased FC between the right dAI and the right median cingulate and paracingulate gyri (DCG), and altered FC was positively related to attention/working memory, visuospatial function, and language. The findings highlighted the different abnormal FC patterns of insular subdivisions in PD patients with different cognitive abilities. Furthermore, dysfunction of the dAI may partly contribute to the decline in executive function and memory in early drug-naïve PD patients 2).

Zhang C, Yuan Y, Sang T, Yu L, Yu Y, Liu X, Zhou W, Zeng Q, Wang J, Peng G, Feng Y. Local white matter abnormalities in Parkinson's disease with mild cognitive impairment: Assessed with neurite orientation dispersion and density imaging. J Neurosci Res. 2023 Feb 28. doi: 10.1002/jnr.25179. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 36854050.
Pan C, Ren J, Li L, Li Y, Xu J, Xue C, Hu G, Yu M, Chen Y, Zhang L, Zhang W, Hu X, Sun Y, Liu W, Chen J. Differential functional connectivity of insular subdivisions in de novo Parkinson's disease with mild cognitive impairment. Brain Imaging Behav. 2021 Mar 26. doi: 10.1007/s11682-021-00471-2. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 33770371.
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  • Last modified: 2023/03/01 20:21
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