Neuroimaging Findings Related to Behavioral Disturbances in Alzheimer's Disease: A Systematic Review

Author(s): Gilberto Sousa Alves, André Férrer Carvalho, Luiza de Amorim de Carvalho, Felipe Kenji Sudo, José Ibiapina Siqueira-Neto, Viola Oertel-Knochel, Alina Jurcoane, Christian Knochel, Henning Boecker, Jerson Laks, Johannes Pantel.

Journal Name: Current Alzheimer Research

Volume 14 , Issue 1 , 2017

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Abstract:

Background: Behavioral and psychological symptoms of dementia (BPSD) associated with Alzheimer's Disease (AD) have been linked to structural and functional alterations in fronto-temporal circuits and cortical abnormalities. However, little is known on how specific volumetric and functional brain changes may be associated with the frequency, severity and pattern of BPSD.

Methods: A systematic review of the literature regarding neuroimaging and BPSD changes in AD was performed through Pubmed/Medline, ISI, and EMBASE electronic databases from January 2000 to May 2015. Eligible references (n=40) included clinical studies in which structural or functional neuroimaging assessment was performed in AD subjects presenting BPSD features.

Results: BPSD symptoms, particularly apathy and psychosis have been associated in most of studies with either volume reductions or decreased metabolism in the prefrontal cortex (orbital and dorsolateral portions), anterior cingulate, insula and temporal lobes (middle portion). WM lacunes associated with AD progression have been associated with depressive symptoms.

Conclusion: The sum of evidence highlights the importance of BPSD-related imaging findings for the understanding of the non-cognitive symptom spectrum in AD. Results suggest that structural and functional changes in fronto-limbic areas may lead to emotional deregulation and symptom unawareness. As these findings may be present early on the AD clinical course, they may have a relevance for the development of imaging markers that could be used in diagnosis, disease monitoring and prediction of therapeutic response.

Keywords: Alzheimer's disease, behavior, BPSD, cognition, cortical, neuroimaging, psychological, symptoms, white matter.

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Article Details

VOLUME: 14
ISSUE: 1
Year: 2017
Page: [61 - 75]
Pages: 15
DOI: 10.2174/1567205013666160603010203
Price: $58

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