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1.  Cholinesterase Inhibitors in Mild Cognitive Impairment: A Systematic Review of Randomised Trials 
PLoS Medicine  2007;4(11):e338.
Background
Mild cognitive impairment (MCI) refers to a transitional zone between normal ageing and dementia. Despite the uncertainty regarding the definition of MCI as a clinical entity, clinical trials have been conducted in the attempt to study the role of cholinesterase inhibitors (ChEIs) currently approved for symptomatic treatment of mild to moderate Alzheimer disease (AD), in preventing progression from MCI to AD. The objective of this review is to assess the effects of ChEIs (donepezil, rivastigmine, and galantamine) in delaying the conversion from MCI to Alzheimer disease or dementia.
Methods and Findings
The terms “donepezil”, “rivastigmine”, “galantamine”, and “mild cognitive impairment” and their variants, synonyms, and acronyms were used as search terms in four electronic databases (MEDLINE, EMBASE, Cochrane, PsycINFO) and three registers: the Cochrane Collaboration Trial Register, Current Controlled Trials, and ClinicalTrials.gov. Published and unpublished studies were included if they were randomized clinical trials published (or described) in English and conducted among persons who had received a diagnosis of MCI and/or abnormal memory function documented by a neuropsychological assessment. A standardized data extraction form was used. The reporting quality was assessed using the Jadad scale. Three published and five unpublished trials met the inclusion criteria (three on donepezil, two on rivastigmine, and three on galantamine). Enrolment criteria differed among the trials, so the study populations were not homogeneous. The duration of the trials ranged from 24 wk to 3 y. No significant differences emerged in the probability of conversion from MCI to AD or dementia between the treated groups and the placebo groups. The rate of conversion ranged from 13% (over 2 y) to 25% (over 3 y) among treated patients, and from 18% (over 2 y) to 28% (over 3 y) among those in the placebo groups. Only for two studies was it possible to derive point estimates of the relative risk of conversion: 0.85 (95% confidence interval 0.64–1.12), and 0.84 (0.57–1.25). Statistically significant differences emerged for three secondary end points. However, when adjusting for multiple comparisons, only one difference remained significant (i.e., the rate of atrophy in the whole brain).
Conclusions
The use of ChEIs in MCI was not associated with any delay in the onset of AD or dementia. Moreover, the safety profile showed that the risks associated with ChEIs are not negligible. The uncertainty regarding MCI as a clinical entity raises the question as to the scientific validity of these trials.
A systematic review of trials of cholinesterase inhibitors for preventing transition of mild cognitive impairment (MCI) to dementia, conducted by Roberto Raschetti and colleagues, found no difference between treatment and control groups and concluded that uncertainty regarding the definition of MCI casts doubts on the validity of such trials.
Editors' Summary
Background.
Worldwide, more than 24 million people have dementia, a group of brain disorders characterized by an irreversible decline in memory, problem solving, communication, and other “cognitive” functions. The commonest form of dementia is Alzheimer disease (AD). The risk of developing AD increases with age—AD is rare in people younger than 65 but about half of people over 85 years old have it. The earliest symptom of AD is usually difficulty in remembering new information. As the disease progresses, patients may become confused and have problems expressing themselves. Their behavior and personality can also change. In advanced AD, patients need help with daily activities like dressing and eating, and eventually lose their ability to recognize relatives and to communicate. There is no cure for AD but a class of drugs called “cholinesterase inhibitors” can sometimes temporarily slow the worsening of symptoms. Three cholinesterase inhibitors—donepezil, rivastigmine, and galantamine—are currently approved for use in mild-to-moderate AD.
Why Was This Study Done?
Some experts have questioned the efficacy of cholinesterase inhibitors in AD, but other experts and patient support groups have called for these drugs to be given to patients with a condition called mild cognitive impairment (MCI) as well as to those with mild AD. People with MCI have memory problems that are more severe than those normally seen in people of their age but no other symptoms of dementia. They are thought to have an increased risk of developing AD, but it is not known whether everyone with MCI eventually develops AD, and there is no standardized way to diagnose MCI. Despite these uncertainties, several clinical trials have investigated whether cholinesterase inhibitors prevent progression from MCI to AD. In this study, the researchers have assessed whether the results of these trials provide any evidence that cholinesterase inhibitors can prevent MCI progressing to AD.
What Did the Researchers Do and Find?
The researchers conducted a systematic review of the medical literature to find trials that had addressed this issue, which met criteria that they had defined clearly in advance of their search. They identified three published and five unpublished randomized controlled trials (studies in which patients randomly receive the test drug or an inactive placebo) that investigated the effect of cholinesterase inhibitors on the progression of MCI. The researchers obtained the results of six of these trials—four examined the effect of cholinesterase inhibitors on the conversion of MCI to clinically diagnosed AD or dementia (the primary end point); all six examined the effect of the drugs on several secondary end points (for example, individual aspects of cognitive function). None of the drugs produced a statistically significant difference (a difference that is unlikely to have happened by chance) in the probability of progression from MCI to AD. The only statistically significant secondary end point after adjustment for multiple comparisons (when many outcomes are considered, false positive results can occur unless specific mathematical techniques are used to prevent this problem) was a decrease in the rate of brain shrinkage associated with galantamine treatment. More patients treated with cholinesterase inhibitors dropped out of trials because of adverse effects than patients given placebo. Finally, in the one trial that reported all causes of deaths, one participant who received placebo and six who received galantamine died.
What Do These Findings Mean?
These findings suggest that the use of cholinesterase inhibitors is not associated with any delay in the onset of clinically diagnosed AD or dementia in people with MCI. They also show that the use of these drugs has no effect on most surrogate (substitute) indicators of AD but that the risks associated with their use are not negligible. However, because MCI has not yet been clearly defined as a clinical condition that precedes dementia, some (even many) of the patients enrolled into the trials that the researchers assessed may not actually have had MCI. Thus, further clinical trials are needed to clarify whether cholinesterase inhibitors can delay the progression of MCI to dementia, but these additional trials should not be done until the diagnosis of MCI has been standardized.
Additional Information.
Please access these Web sites via the online version of this summary at http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pmed.0040338.
An essay by Matthews and colleagues, in the October 2007 issue of PLoS Medicine, discusses how mild cognitive impairment is currently diagnosed
The US Alzheimer's Association provides information about all aspects of Alzheimer disease, including fact sheets on treatments for Alzheimer disease and on mild cognitive impairment
The UK Alzheimer's Society provides information for patients and caregivers on all aspects of dementia, including drug treatments and mild cognitive impairment
The UK charity DIPEx provides short video clips of personal experiences of care givers of people with dementia
doi:10.1371/journal.pmed.0040338
PMCID: PMC2082649  PMID: 18044984
2.  Prevalence, Distribution, and Impact of Mild Cognitive Impairment in Latin America, China, and India: A 10/66 Population-Based Study 
PLoS Medicine  2012;9(2):e1001170.
A set of cross-sectional surveys carried out in Cuba, Dominican Republic, Peru, Mexico, Venezuela, Puerto Rico, China, and India reveal the prevalence and between-country variation in mild cognitive impairment at a population level.
Background
Rapid demographic ageing is a growing public health issue in many low- and middle-income countries (LAMICs). Mild cognitive impairment (MCI) is a construct frequently used to define groups of people who may be at risk of developing dementia, crucial for targeting preventative interventions. However, little is known about the prevalence or impact of MCI in LAMIC settings.
Methods and Findings
Data were analysed from cross-sectional surveys established by the 10/66 Dementia Research Group and carried out in Cuba, Dominican Republic, Peru, Mexico, Venezuela, Puerto Rico, China, and India on 15,376 individuals aged 65+ without dementia. Standardised assessments of mental and physical health, and cognitive function were carried out including informant interviews. An algorithm was developed to define Mayo Clinic amnestic MCI (aMCI). Disability (12-item World Health Organization disability assessment schedule [WHODAS]) and informant-reported neuropsychiatric symptoms (neuropsychiatric inventory [NPI-Q]) were measured. After adjustment, aMCI was associated with disability, anxiety, apathy, and irritability (but not depression); between-country heterogeneity in these associations was only significant for disability. The crude prevalence of aMCI ranged from 0.8% in China to 4.3% in India. Country differences changed little (range 0.6%–4.6%) after standardization for age, gender, and education level. In pooled estimates, aMCI was modestly associated with male gender and fewer assets but was not associated with age or education. There was no significant between-country variation in these demographic associations.
Conclusions
An algorithm-derived diagnosis of aMCI showed few sociodemographic associations but was consistently associated with higher disability and neuropsychiatric symptoms in addition to showing substantial variation in prevalence across LAMIC populations. Longitudinal data are needed to confirm findings—in particular, to investigate the predictive validity of aMCI in these settings and risk/protective factors for progression to dementia; however, the large number affected has important implications in these rapidly ageing settings.
Please see later in the article for the Editors' Summary
Editors' Summary
Background
Currently, more than 35 million people worldwide have dementia, a group of brain disorders characterized by an irreversible decline in memory, problem solving, communication, and other “cognitive” functions. Dementia, the commonest form of which is Alzheimer's disease, mainly affects older people and, because more people than ever are living to a ripe old age, experts estimate that, by 2050, more than 115 million people will have dementia. At present, there is no cure for dementia although drugs can be used to manage some of the symptoms. Risk factors for dementia include physical inactivity, infrequent participation in mentally or socially stimulating activities, and common vascular risk factors such as high blood pressure, diabetes, and smoking. In addition, some studies have reported that mild cognitive impairment (MCI) is associated with an increased risk of dementia. MCI can be seen as an intermediate state between normal cognitive aging (becoming increasingly forgetful) and dementia although many people with MCI never develop dementia, and some types of MCI can be static or self-limiting. Individuals with MCI have cognitive problems that are more severe than those normally seen in people of a similar age but they have no other symptoms of dementia and are able to look after themselves. The best studied form of MCI—amnestic MCI (aMCI)—is characterized by memory problems such as misplacing things and forgetting appointments.
Why Was This Study Done?
Much of the expected increase in dementia will occur in low and middle income countries (LAMICs) because these countries have rapidly aging populations. Given that aMCI is frequently used to define groups of people who may be at risk of developing dementia, it would be useful to know what proportion of community-dwelling older adults in LAMICs have aMCI (the prevalence of aMCI). Such information might help governments plan their future health care and social support needs. In this cross-sectional, population-based study, the researchers estimate the prevalence of aMCI in eight LAMICs using data collected by the 10/66 Dementia Research Group. They also investigate the association of aMCI with sociodemographic factors (for example, age, gender, and education), disability, and neuropsychiatric symptoms such as anxiety, apathy, irritability, and depression. A cross-sectional study collects data on a population at a single time point; the 10/66 Dementia Research Group is building an evidence base to inform the development and implementation of policies for improving the health and social welfare of older people in LAMICs, particularly people with dementia.
What Did the Researchers Do and Find?
In cross-sectional surveys carried out in six Latin American LAMICS, China, and India, more than 15,000 elderly individuals without dementia completed standardized assessments of their mental and physical health and their cognitive function. Interviews with relatives and carers provided further details about the participant's cognitive decline and about neuropsychiatric symptoms. The researchers developed an algorithm (set of formulae) that used the data collected in these surveys to diagnose aMCI in the study participants. Finally, they used statistical methods to analyze the prevalence, distribution, and impact of aMCI in the eight LAMICs. The researchers report that aMCI was associated with disability, anxiety, apathy, and irritability but not with depression and that the prevalence of aMCI ranged from 0.8% in China to 4.3% in India. Other analyses show that, considered across all eight countries, aMCI was modestly associated with being male (men had a slightly higher prevalence of aMCI than women) and with having fewer assets but was not associated with age or education.
What Do These Findings Mean?
These findings suggest that aMCI, as diagnosed using the algorithm developed by the researchers, is consistently associated with higher disability and with neuropsychiatric symptoms in the LAMICs studied but not with most sociodemographic factors. Because prevalidated and standardized measurements were applied consistently in all the countries and a common algorithm was used to define aMCI, these findings also suggest that the prevalence of aMCI varies markedly among LAMIC populations and is similar to or slightly lower than the prevalence most often reported for European and North American populations. Although longitudinal studies are now needed to investigate the extent to which aMCI can be used as risk marker for further cognitive decline and dementia in these settings, the large absolute numbers of older people with aMCI in LAMICs revealed here potentially has important implications for health care and social service planning in these rapidly aging and populous regions of the world.
Additional Information
Please access these Web sites via the online version of this summary at http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pmed.1001170.
Alzheimer's Disease International is the international federation of Alzheimer associations around the world; it provides links to individual associations, information about dementia, and links to three World Alzheimer Reports; information about the 10/66 Dementia Research Group is also available on this web site
The Alzheimer's Society provides information for patients and carers about dementia, including information on MCI and personal stories about living with dementia
The Alzheimer's Association also provides information for patients and carers about dementia and about MCI, and personal stories about dementia
A BBC radio program that includes an interview with a man with MCI is available
MedlinePlus provides links to further resources about MCI and dementia (in English and Spanish)
doi:10.1371/journal.pmed.1001170
PMCID: PMC3274506  PMID: 22346736
3.  Dysexecutive Functioning in Mild Cognitive Impairment: Derailment in Temporal Gradients 
Libon et al. (2010) provided evidence for three statistically determined clusters of patients with mild cognitive impairment (MCI): amnesic (aMCI), dysexecutive (dMCI), and mixed (mxMCI). The current study further examined dysexecutive impairment in MCI using the framework of Fuster's (1997) derailed temporal gradients, that is, declining performance on executive tests over time or test epoch. Temporal gradients were operationally defined by calculating the slope of aggregate letter fluency output across 15-s epochs and accuracy indices for initial, middle, and latter triads from the Wechsler Memory Scale-Mental Control subtest (Boston Revision). For letter fluency, slope was steeper for dMCI compared to aMCI and NC groups. Between-group Mental Control analyses for triad 1 revealed worse dMCI performance than NC participants. On triad 2, dMCI scored lower than aMCI and NCs; on triad 3, mxMCI performed worse versus NCs. Within-group Mental Control analyses yielded equal performance across all triads for aMCI and NC participants. mxMCI scored lower on triad 1 compared to triads 2 and 3. dMCI participants also performed worse on triad 1 compared to triads 2 and 3, but scored higher on triad 3 versus triad 2. These data suggest impaired temporal gradients may provide a useful heuristic for understanding dysexecutive impairment in MCI.
doi:10.1017/S1355617711001238
PMCID: PMC3315354  PMID: 22014116
Mild cognitive impairment; Single domain mild cognitive impairment; Multiple domain mild cognitive impairment; Alzheimer's disease; The Titanic Effect; Executive control
4.  Severity of CIND and MCI predict incidence of dementia in an ischemic stroke cohort 
Neurology  2009;73(22):1866-1872.
Background:
The utility of poststroke cognitive status, namely dementia, cognitive impairment no dementia (CIND), mild cognitive impairment (MCI), and no cognitive impairment (NCI), in predicting dementia has been previously examined. However, no studies to date have compared the ability of subtypes of MCI and CIND to predict dementia in a poststroke population.
Methods:
A cohort of ischemic stroke patients underwent neuropsychological assessment annually for up to 5 years. Dementia was defined using the DSM-IV criteria. Univariate and multivariable Cox proportional regression was performed to determine the ability of MCI subtypes, CIND severity, and individual domains of impairment to predict dementia.
Results:
A total of 362 patients without dementia were followed up for a mean of 3.4 years (17% drop out), with 24 developing incident dementia. Older age, previous and recurrent stroke, and CIND and MCI subtypes were significant predictors of dementia. In multivariable analysis controlling for treatment allocation, patients who were older, had previous or recurrent stroke, and had either CIND moderate or multiple domain MCI with amnestic component were at elevated risk for dementia. In multivariable domain analysis, recurrent strokes, age, and previous strokes, verbal memory, and visual memory were significant predictors of dementia. Receiver operating characteristic curve analysis showed that CIND moderate (area under the curve: 0.893) and multiple domain MCI with amnestic component (area under the curve: 0.832) were significant predictors of conversion to dementia. All other classifications of cognitive impairment had areas under the curve less than 0.7.
Conclusion:
Stroke patients with cognitive impairment no dementia (CIND) moderate are at higher risk of developing dementia, while CIND mild patients are not at increased risk of developing dementia.
GLOSSARY
= Alzheimer disease;
= area under the curve;
= confidence interval;
= cognitive impairment no dementia;
= Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 4th edition;
= European Australasian Stroke Prevention in Reversible Ischemia Trial;
= European Australasian Stroke Prevention in Reversible Ischemia Trial, cognitive substudy;
= hazard ratio;
= lacunar infarct;
= mild cognitive impairment;
= modified Rankin scale;
= no cognitive impairment;
= Oxfordshire Community Stroke Project;
= partial anterior circulation infarct;
= posterior circulation infarct;
= receiver operating curve;
= total anterior circulation infarct;
= vascular dementia;
= Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale–Revised;
= Wechsler Memory Scale–Revised.
doi:10.1212/WNL.0b013e3181c3fcb7
PMCID: PMC2788800  PMID: 19949033
5.  Functional impairment in elderly patients with mild cognitive impairment and mild Alzheimer's disease 
Archives of general psychiatry  2011;68(6):617-626.
CONTEXT
The original mild cognitive impairment (MCI) criteria exclude substantial functional deficits, but recent reports suggest otherwise. Identifying the extent, severity, type, and correlates of functional deficits that occur in MCI and mild Alzheimer’s disease (AD) can aid in early detection of incipient dementia and identify potential mechanistic pathways to disrupted instrumental activities of daily living (IADLs).
OBJECTIVES
To examine the number, type, and severity of functional impairments and identify the clinical characteristics associated with functional impairment across individuals with amnestic MCI (aMCI) and those with mild AD.
DESIGN
The study uses baseline data from the Alzheimer’s Disease Neuroimaging Initiative.
SETTING
Data from the Alzheimer’s Disease Neuroimaging Initiative was collected at multiple research sites in the US and Canada.
PATIENTS
The samples included 229 controls, 394 aMCI, and 193 AD patients.
MAIN OUTCOME MEASURE
The 10-item Pfeffer Functional Activities Questionnaire (FAQ) assessed function.
RESULTS
Informant-reported FAQ deficits were common in patients with aMCI (72.3%) and AD (97.4%) but were rarely self-reported by controls (7.9%). The average severity per FAQ deficit did not differ between patients with aMCI and controls; both were less impaired than patients with AD (P < .001). Two FAQ items (remembering appointments, family occasions, holidays, and medications; assembling tax records, business affairs, or other papers) were specific (0.95) in differentiating controls from the combined aMCI and AD groups (only 34.0% of patients with aMCI and 3.6% of patients with AD had no difficulty with these 2 items). The severity of FAQ deficits in the combined aMCI and AD group was associated with worse Trailmaking Test A scores and smaller hippocampal volumes (P < .001). Within the aMCI group, functionally intact individuals had greater hippocampal volumes and better Auditory Verbal Learning Test 30-minute delay and Trailmaking Test A (P < .001) scores compared with those with moderate or severe FAQ deficits. Patients with a high number of deficits were more likely to express the APOE ε4 allele (63.8%) compared with patients with no (46.8%) or few (48.4%) functional deficits.
CONCLUSIONS
Mild IADL deficits are common in individuals with aMCI and should be considered in MCI criteria. Two IADLs, remembering appointments, family occasions, holidays, and medications and assembling tax records, business affairs, or other papers, appear to be characteristic of clinically significant cognitive impairment. In patients with aMCI, impairment in memory and processing speed and greater medial temporal atrophy were associated with greater IADL deficits
doi:10.1001/archgenpsychiatry.2011.57
PMCID: PMC3682408  PMID: 21646578
6.  Neuropsychological characteristics of mild cognitive impairment subgroups 
Objective
To describe the neuropsychological characteristics of mild cognitive impairment (MCI) subgroups identified in the Cardiovascular Health Study (CHS) cognition study.
Methods
MCI was classified as MCI‐amnestic type (MCI‐AT): patients with documented memory deficits but otherwise normal cognitive function; and MCI‐multiple cognitive deficits type (MCI‐MCDT): impairment of at least one cognitive domain (not including memory), or one abnormal test in at least two other domains, but who had not crossed the dementia threshold. The MCI subjects did not have systemic, neurological, or psychiatric disorders likely to affect cognition.
Results
MCI‐AT (n = 10) had worse verbal and non‐verbal memory performance than MCI‐MCDT (n = 28) or normal controls (n = 374). By contrast, MCI‐MCDT had worse language, psychomotor speed, fine motor control, and visuoconstructional function than MCI‐AT or normal controls. MCI‐MCDT subjects had memory deficits, though they were less pronounced than in MCI‐AT. Of the MCI‐MCDT cases, 22 (78.5%) had memory deficits, and 6 (21.5%) did not. MCI‐MCDT with memory disorders had more language deficits than MCI‐MCDT without memory disorders. By contrast, MCI‐MCDT without memory deficits had more fine motor control deficits than MCI‐MCDT with memory deficits.
Conclusions
The most frequent form of MCI was the MCI‐MCDT with memory deficits. However, the identification of memory impaired MCI groups did not reflect the true prevalence of MCI in a population, as 16% of all MCI cases and 21.5% of the MCI‐MCDT cases did not have memory impairment. Study of idiopathic amnestic and non‐amnestic forms of MCI is essential for an understanding of the aetiology of MCI.
doi:10.1136/jnnp.2004.045567
PMCID: PMC2077558  PMID: 16103044
Alzheimer's disease; aging; dementia; mild cognitive impairment; neuropsychology
7.  Semantic memory activation in amnestic mild cognitive impairment 
Brain  2009;132(8):2068-2078.
Cognitively intact older individuals at risk for developing Alzheimer's disease frequently show increased functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) brain activation presumably associated with compensatory recruitment, whereas mild cognitive impairment (MCI) patients tend not to show increased activation presumably due to reduced neural reserve. Previous studies, however, have typically used episodic memory activation tasks, placing MCI participants at a performance disadvantage relative to healthy elders. In this event-related fMRI study, we employed a low effort, high accuracy semantic memory task to determine if increased activation of memory circuits is preserved in amnestic MCI when task performance is controlled. Fifty-seven participants, aged 65–85 years, comprised three groups (n = 19 each): amnestic MCI patients; cognitively intact older participants at risk for developing Alzheimer's disease based on having at least one ApoE ε4 allele and a positive family history of Alzheimer's disease (At Risk); and cognitively intact participants without Alzheimer's disease risk factors (Control). fMRI was conducted on a 3T MR scanner while participants performed a famous name discrimination task. Participants also underwent neuropsychological testing outside the scanner; whole brain and hippocampal atrophy were assessed from anatomical MRI scans. The three groups did not differ on demographic variables or on fame discrimination performance (>87% correct for all groups). As expected, the amnestic MCI participants demonstrated reduced episodic memory performance. Spatial extent of activation (Fame—Unfamiliar subtraction) differentiated the three groups (Control = 0 ml, At Risk = 9.7 ml, MCI = 34.7 ml). The MCI and At Risk groups showed significantly greater per cent signal change than Control participants in 8 of 14 functionally defined regions, including the medial temporal lobe, temporoparietal junction, and posterior cingulate/precuneus. MCI participants also showed greater activation than Controls in two frontal regions. At Risk, but not MCI, participants showed increased activity in the left hippocampal complex; MCI participants, however, evidenced increased activity in this region when hippocampal atrophy was controlled. When performance is equated, MCI patients demonstrate functional compensation in brain regions subserving semantic memory systems that generally equals or exceeds that observed in cognitively intact individuals at risk for Alzheimer's disease. This hyperactivation profile in MCI is even observed in the left hippocampal complex, but only when the extent of hippocampal atrophy is taken into consideration.
doi:10.1093/brain/awp157
PMCID: PMC2714062  PMID: 19515831
Area under the curve (AUC); fMRI; semantic memory; mild cognitive impairment; APOE ε4
8.  Yes/No Versus Forced-Choice Recognition Memory in Mild Cognitive Impairment and Alzheimer’s Disease: Patterns of Impairment and Associations with Dementia Severity 
The Clinical neuropsychologist  2012;26(7):1201-1216.
Memory tests are sensitive to early identification of Alzheimer’s disease (AD) but less useful as the disease advances. However, assessing particular types of recognition memory may better characterize dementia severity in later stages of AD. We sought to examine patterns of recognition memory deficits in individuals with AD and mild cognitive impairment (MCI). Memory performance and global cognition data were collected from participants with AD (n=37), MCI (n=37), and cognitively intact older adults (normal controls, NC; n=35). One-way analyses of variance (ANOVAs) examined differences between groups on yes/no and forced-choice recognition measures. Individuals with amnestic MCI performed worse than NC and nonamnestic MCI participants on yes/no recognition, but were comparable on forced-choice recognition. AD patients were more impaired across yes/no and forced-choice recognition tasks. Individuals with mild AD (≥120 Dementia Rating Scale, DRS) performed better than those with moderate-to-severe AD (<120 DRS) on forced-choice recognition, but were equally impaired on yes/no recognition. There were differences in the relationships between learning, recall, and recognition performance across groups. Although yes/no recognition testing may be sensitive to MCI, forced-choice procedures may provide utility in assessing severity of anterograde amnesia in later stages of AD. Implications for assessment of insufficient effort and malingering are also discussed.
doi:10.1080/13854046.2012.728626
PMCID: PMC3482270  PMID: 23030301
Recognition memory; Alzheimer’s disease; Mild cognitive impairment; Dementia severity; Neuropsychology
9.  Conversion of amyloid positive and negative MCI to AD over 3 years 
Neurology  2009;73(10):754-760.
Background:
Patients with amnestic mild cognitive impairment (MCI) represent an important clinical group as they are at increased risk of developing Alzheimer disease (AD). 11C-PIB PET is an in vivo marker of brain amyloid load.
Objective:
To assess the rates of conversion of MCI to AD during a 3-year follow-up period and to compare levels of amyloid deposition between MCI converters and nonconverters.
Methods:
Thirty-one subjects with MCI with baseline 11C-PIB PET, MRI, and neuropsychometry have been clinically followed up for 1 to 3 years (2.68 ± 0.6 years). Raised cortical 11C-PIB binding in subjects with MCI was detected with region of interest analysis and statistical parametric mapping.
Results:
Seventeen of 31 (55%) subjects with MCI had increased 11C-PIB retention at baseline and 14 of these 17 (82%) clinically converted to AD during follow-up. Only one of the 14 PIB-negative MCI cases converted to AD. Of the PIB-positive subjects with MCI, half (47%) converted to AD within 1 year of baseline PIB PET, these faster converters having higher tracer-retention values than slower converters in the anterior cingulate (p = 0.027) and frontal cortex (p = 0.031). Seven of 17 (41%) subjects with MCI with known APOE status were ɛ4 allele carriers, this genotype being associated with faster conversion rates in PIB-positive subjects with MCI (p = 0.035).
Conclusions:
PIB-positive subjects with mild cognitive impairment (MCI) are significantly more likely to convert to AD than PIB-negative patients, faster converters having higher PIB retention levels at baseline than slower converters. In vivo detection of amyloid deposition in MCI with PIB PET provides useful prognostic information.
GLOSSARY
= Alzheimer disease;
= Alzheimer’s Disease Assessment Scale;
= Consortium to Establish a Registry for Alzheimer’s Disease;
= California Verbal Learning Test;
= mild cognitive impairment;
= Montreal Neurological Institute;
= Pittsburgh compound B;
= region of interest;
= statistical parametric mapping;
= Wechsler Memory Scale–Revised.
doi:10.1212/WNL.0b013e3181b23564
PMCID: PMC2830881  PMID: 19587325
10.  Amnestic Mild Cognitive Impairment and Early Alzheimer's Disease in an Asian Memory Clinic – Evidence for a Clinical Spectrum 
Objectives
To determine if mild cognitive impairment (MCI) represents a continuum of cognitive and functional deficits.
Methods
Clinical data of 164 subjects with no dementia (ND, n = 52), uncertain dementia (n = 69), and mild probable Alzheimer's disease (AD, n = 43) were reviewed. Uncertain dementia patients were classified as pre-MCI (n = 11), early amnestic MCI (e-aMCI, n = 15) and late amnestic MCI (l-aMCI, n = 15). Cognitive assessments [Chinese Mini-Mental State Examination (CMMSE) and a validated neuropsychological battery], functional assessments (Lawton's scale for instrumental activities of daily living) and neuroimaging (ischemic lesions and medial temporal lobe atrophy) were reviewed.
Results
ND, aMCI and mild AD subjects demonstrated a significant trend for worsening performance for all cognitive and functional measures (ANOVA, p < 0.05). Pre-MCI subjects performed significantly better than aMCI subjects in all verbal memory domains (p < 0.001), while l-aMCI had worse functional performance (p = 0.007), a trend towards greater depressive symptoms (p = 0.05) and higher medial temporal lobe atrophy scores (p = 0.06). l-aMCI subjects were more likely than either pre-MCI or e-aMCI to progress to dementia over a mean follow-up period of 2.5 years (46.7 vs. 9.1 and 20.0%, respectively).
Conclusions
Clinical delineation of aMCI allows the differentiation of those likely to progress for better correlation to biomarker development.
doi:10.1159/000327519
PMCID: PMC3199896  PMID: 22163238
Alzheimer's disease; Clinical dementia rating; Disease spectrum; Mild cognitive impairment
11.  Prevalence of mild cognitive impairment is higher in men 
Neurology  2010;75(10):889-897.
Objective:
We investigated the prevalence of mild cognitive impairment (MCI) in Olmsted County, MN, using in-person evaluations and published criteria.
Methods:
We evaluated an age- and sex-stratified random sample of Olmsted County residents who were 70–89 years old on October 1, 2004, using the Clinical Dementia Rating Scale, a neurologic evaluation, and neuropsychological testing to assess 4 cognitive domains: memory, executive function, language, and visuospatial skills. Information for each participant was reviewed by an adjudication panel and a diagnosis of normal cognition, MCI, or dementia was made using published criteria.
Results:
Among 1,969 subjects without dementia, 329 subjects had MCI, with a prevalence of 16.0% (95% confidence interval [CI] 14.4–17.5) for any MCI, 11.1% (95% CI 9.8–12.3) for amnestic MCI, and 4.9% (95% CI 4.0–5.8) for nonamnestic MCI. The prevalence of MCI increased with age and was higher in men. The prevalence odds ratio (OR) in men was 1.54 (95% CI 1.21–1.96; adjusted for age, education, and nonparticipation). The prevalence was also higher in subjects who never married and in subjects with an APOE ε3ε4 or ε4ε4 genotype. MCI prevalence decreased with increasing number of years of education (p for linear trend <0.0001).
Conclusions:
Our study suggests that approximately 16% of elderly subjects free of dementia are affected by MCI, and amnestic MCI is the most common type. The higher prevalence of MCI in men may suggest that women transition from normal cognition directly to dementia at a later age but more abruptly.
GLOSSARY
= Alzheimer disease;
= amnestic mild cognitive impairment;
= Clinical Dementia Rating scale;
= confidence interval;
= Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 4th edition;
= Functional Activities Questionnaire;
= mild cognitive impairment;
= nonamnestic mild cognitive impairment;
= odds ratio;
= Short Test of Mental Status;
= Telephone Interview for Cognitive Status-modified;
= Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale-Revised.
doi:10.1212/WNL.0b013e3181f11d85
PMCID: PMC2938972  PMID: 20820000
12.  Mild cognitive impairment in Parkinson disease 
Neurology  2010;75(12):1062-1069.
Background:
In studies of mild cognitive impairment (MCI) in Parkinson disease (PD), patients without dementia have reported variable prevalences and profiles of MCI, likely to be due to methodologic differences between the studies.
Objective:
The objective of this study was to determine frequency and the profile of MCI in a large, multicenter cohort of well-defined patients with PD using a standardized analytic method and a common definition of MCI.
Methods:
A total of 1,346 patients with PD from 8 different cohorts were included. Standardized analysis of verbal memory, visuospatial, and attentional/executive abilities was performed. Subjects were classified as having MCI if their age- and education-corrected z score on one or more cognitive domains was at least 1.5 standard deviations below the mean of either control subjects or normative data.
Results:
A total of 25.8% of subjects (95% confidence interval [CI] 23.5–28.2) were classified as having MCI. Memory impairment was most common (13.3%; 11.6–15.3), followed by visuospatial (11.0%; 9.4–13.0) and attention/executive ability impairment (10.1%; 8.6–11.9). Regarding cognitive profiles, 11.3% (9.7–13.1) were classified as nonamnestic single-domain MCI, 8.9% (7.0–9.9) as amnestic single-domain, 4.8% (3.8–6.1) as amnestic multiple-domain, and 1.3% (0.9–2.1) as nonamnestic multiple-domain MCI. Having MCI was associated with older age at assessment and at disease onset, male gender, depression, more severe motor symptoms, and advanced disease stage.
Conclusions:
MCI is common in patients with PD without dementia, affecting a range of cognitive domains, including memory, visual-spatial, and attention/executive abilities. Future studies of patients with PD with MCI need to determine risk factors for ongoing cognitive decline and assess interventions at a predementia stage.
GLOSSARY
= amnestic multiple-domain MCI;
= amnestic single-domain MCI;
= confidence interval;
= Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 4th edition;
= mild cognitive impairment;
= Mini-Mental State Examination;
= nonamnestic multiple-domain MCI;
= nonamnestic single-domain MCI;
= Parkinson disease;
= Parkinson's Disease Cognitive Rating Scale;
= Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale.
doi:10.1212/WNL.0b013e3181f39d0e
PMCID: PMC2942065  PMID: 20855849
13.  Everyday episodic memory in amnestic mild cognitive impairment: a preliminary investigation 
BMC Neuroscience  2011;12:80.
Background
Decline in episodic memory is one of the hallmark features of Alzheimer's disease (AD) and is also a defining feature of amnestic Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI), which is posited as a potential prodrome of AD. While deficits in episodic memory are well documented in MCI, the nature of this impairment remains relatively under-researched, particularly for those domains with direct relevance and meaning for the patient's daily life. In order to fully explore the impact of disruption to the episodic memory system on everyday memory in MCI, we examined participants' episodic memory capacity using a battery of experimental tasks with real-world relevance. We investigated episodic acquisition and delayed recall (story-memory), associative memory (face-name pairings), spatial memory (route learning and recall), and memory for everyday mundane events in 16 amnestic MCI and 18 control participants. Furthermore, we followed MCI participants longitudinally to gain preliminary evidence regarding the possible predictive efficacy of these real-world episodic memory tasks for subsequent conversion to AD.
Results
The most discriminating tests at baseline were measures of acquisition, delayed recall, and associative memory, followed by everyday memory, and spatial memory tasks, with MCI patients scoring significantly lower than controls. At follow-up (mean time elapsed: 22.4 months), 6 MCI cases had progressed to clinically probable AD. Exploratory logistic regression analyses revealed that delayed associative memory performance at baseline was a potential predictor of subsequent conversion to AD.
Conclusions
As a preliminary study, our findings suggest that simple associative memory paradigms with real-world relevance represent an important line of enquiry in future longitudinal studies charting MCI progression over time.
doi:10.1186/1471-2202-12-80
PMCID: PMC3160963  PMID: 21816065
14.  Deficits in episodic memory retrieval reveal impaired default mode network connectivity in amnestic mild cognitive impairment 
NeuroImage : Clinical  2014;4:473-480.
Amnestic mild cognitive impairment (aMCI) is believed to represent a transitional stage between normal healthy ageing and the development of dementia. In particular, aMCI patients have been shown to have higher annual transition rates to Alzheimer's Disease (AD) than individuals without cognitive impairment. Despite intensifying interest investigating the neuroanatomical basis of this transition, there remain a number of questions regarding the pathophysiological process underlying aMCI itself. A number of recent studies in aMCI have shown specific impairments in connectivity within the default mode network (DMN), which is a group of regions strongly related to episodic memory capacities. However to date, no study has investigated the integrity of the DMN between patients with aMCI and those with a non-amnestic pattern of MCI (naMCI), who have cognitive impairment, but intact memory storage systems. In this study, we contrasted the DMN connectivity in 24 aMCI and 33 naMCI patients using seed-based resting state fMRI. The two groups showed no statistical difference in their DMN intra-connectivity. However when connectivity was analysed according to performance on measures of episodic memory retrieval, the two groups were separable, with aMCI patients demonstrating impaired functional connectivity between the hippocampal formation and the posterior cingulate cortex. We provide evidence that this lack of connectivity is driven by impaired communication from the posterior cingulate hub and does not simply represent hippocampal atrophy, suggesting that posterior cingulate degeneration is the driving force behind impaired DMN connectivity in aMCI.
Highlights
•First trial to explore Default Mode Network (DMN) connectivity between MCI and naMCI•Amnestic and nonamnestic MCI groups show similar overall DMN intra-connectivity.•aMCI patients have connectivity deficits related to impaired memory retention.•Impaired DMN connectivity is driven by deficits in posterior cingulate cortex.•Alzheimer’s disease pathology likely evolves from PCC to hippocampus
doi:10.1016/j.nicl.2014.02.010
PMCID: PMC3952352  PMID: 24634833
Functional magnetic resonance imaging; Resting state functional connectivity; Mild cognitive impairment; Memory; Amnestic; Default mode network
15.  Different Characteristics of Cognitive Impairment in Elderly Schizophrenia and Alzheimer's Disease in the Mild Cognitive Impairment Stage 
We compared indices of the revised version of the Wechsler Memory Scale (WMS-R) and scaled scores of the five subtests of the revised version of the Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale (WAIS-R) in 30 elderly schizophrenia (ES) patients and 25 Alzheimer's disease (AD) patients in the amnestic mild cognitive impairment (aMCI) stage (AD-aMCI). In the WMS-R, attention/concentration was rated lower and delayed recall was rated higher in ES than in AD-aMCI, although general memory was comparable in the two groups. In WAIS-R, digit symbol substitution, similarity, picture completion, and block design scores were significantly lower in ES than in AD-aMCI, but the information scores were comparable between the two groups. Delayed recall and forgetfulness were less impaired, and attention, working memory and executive function were more impaired in ES than in AD-aMCI. These results should help clinicians to distinguish ES combined with AD-aMCI from ES alone.
doi:10.1159/000323561
PMCID: PMC3199876  PMID: 22163230
Alzheimer's disease; Attention deficit; Delayed recall; Executive function; Recent memory; Three-dimensional stereotactic surface projections; Voxel-based specific region analysis; Working memory
16.  Verbal Serial List Learning in Mild Cognitive Impairment: A Profile Analysis of Interference, Forgetting, and Errors 
Using cluster analysis Libon et al. (2010) found three verbal serial list-learning profiles involving delay memory test performance in patients with mild cognitive impairment (MCI). Amnesic MCI (aMCI) patients presented with low scores on delay free recall and recognition tests; mixed MCI (mxMCI) patients scored higher on recognition compared to delay free recall tests; and dysexecutive MCI (dMCI) patients generated relatively intact scores on both delay test conditions. The aim of the current research was to further characterize memory impairment in MCI by examining forgetting/savings, interference from a competing word list, intrusion errors/perseverations, intrusion word frequency, and recognition foils in these three statistically determined MCI groups compared to normal control (NC) participants. The aMCI patients exhibited little savings, generated more highly prototypic intrusion errors, and displayed indiscriminate responding to delayed recognition foils. The mxMCI patients exhibited higher saving scores, fewer and less prototypic intrusion errors, and selectively endorsed recognition foils from the interference list. dMCI patients also selectively endorsed recognition foils from the interference list but performed similarly compared to NC participants. These data suggest the existence of distinct memory impairments in MCI and caution against the routine use of a single memory test score to operationally define MCI.
doi:10.1017/S1355617711000944
PMCID: PMC3315271  PMID: 21880171
Mild cognitive impairment; MCI; Declarative memory; Executive control; Philadelphia (repeatable) Verbal Learning Test; P(r)VLT; Cluster analysis; Boston Process Approach
17.  Declining financial capacity in mild cognitive impairment 
Neurology  2009;73(12):928-934.
Objective:
To investigate 1-year change in financial capacity in relation to conversion from amnestic mild cognitive impairment (MCI) to dementia.
Methods:
Seventy-six cognitively healthy older controls, 25 patients with amnestic MCI who converted to Alzheimer-type dementia during the study period (MCI converters), and 62 patients with MCI who did not convert to dementia (MCI nonconverters) were administered the Financial Capacity Instrument (FCI) at baseline and 1-year follow-up. Performance on the FCI domain and global scores was compared within and between groups using multivariate repeated-measures analyses.
Results:
At baseline, controls performed better than MCI converters and nonconverters on almost all FCI domains and on both FCI total scores. MCI converters performed below nonconverters on domains of financial concepts, cash transactions, bank statement management, and bill payment and on both FCI total scores. At 1-year follow-up, MCI converters showed significantly greater decline than controls and MCI nonconverters for the domain of checkbook management and for both FCI total scores. The domain of bank statement management showed a strong trend. For both the checkbook and bank statement domains, MCI converters showed declines in procedural skills, such as calculating the correct balance in a checkbook register, but not in conceptual understanding of a checkbook or a bank statement.
Conclusions:
Declining financial skills are detectable in patients with mild cognitive impairment (MCI) in the year before their conversion to Alzheimer disease. Clinicians should proactively monitor patients with MCI for declining financial skills and advise patients and families about appropriate interventions.
GLOSSARY
= Alzheimer disease;
= Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center;
= Clinical Dementia Rating;
= Dementia Rating Scale, 2nd edition;
= Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 4th edition;
= Financial Capacity Instrument;
= Geriatric Depression Scale;
= multivariate analysis of covariance;
= mild cognitive impairment;
= Mini Mental State Examination;
= Prior/Premorbid Financial Capacity Form;
= University of Alabama at Birmingham.
doi:10.1212/WNL.0b013e3181b87971
PMCID: PMC2754335  PMID: 19770468
18.  A two-year follow-up of cognitive deficits and brain perfusion in Mild Cognitive Impairment and mild Alzheimer’s disease 
Background
The 15-Objects Test (15-OT) provides useful gradation of visuoperceptual impairment from normal aging through Alzheimer’s disease (AD) and correlates with temporo-parietal perfusion.
Objectives
To analyse progression of 15-OT performance in Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI) and AD, and its correlates with cognition and Single Photon Emission Computerized Tomography (SPECT). Further, to examine neuropsychological and SPECT differences between the MCI patients who developed AD and those who didn’t.
Methods
From the initial 126 participants (42/group), 38AD, 39MCI and 38 elderly controls (EC) were reassessed (SPECT: 35AD, 33MCI, 35EC) after two years. The progression of cognitive and SPECT scores during this period was compared between groups, and baseline data between converters and non-converters. SPECT data were analysed by SPM5.
Results
The 15-OT was the only measure of progression that differed between the three groups; worsening scores on 15-OT were associated with worsening in verbal and visual retention, and decreased perfusion on left postsubicular area. In the MCI patients cerebral perfusion fell over the two years in medial-posterior cingulate and fronto-temporo-parietal regions; AD showed extensive changes involving almost all cerebral regions. No SPECT changes were detected in controls. At baseline, the MCI patients who developed AD differed from non-converters in verbal recognition memory, but not in SPECT perfusion.
Conclusion
SPECT and 15-OT appear to provide a potential measure to differenciate between progression of normal aging, MCI and AD. Worsening on 15-OT was related to decreased perfusion in postsubicular area; but further longitudinal studies are needed to determine the contribution of 15-OT as a predictor of AD from MCI.
doi:10.3233/JAD-2012-111850
PMCID: PMC3589736  PMID: 22406443
Visuoperception; The 15-Objects test; cerebral perfusion; brain SPECT; two-year follow-up; prospective; longitudinal; Mild Cognitive Impairment; Alzheimer’s disease
19.  Medical decision-making capacity in mild cognitive impairment 
Neurology  2008;71(19):1474-1480.
Objective:
To investigate longitudinal change in the medical decision-making capacity (MDC) of patients with amnestic mild cognitive impairment (MCI) under different consent standards.
Methods:
Eighty-eight healthy older controls and 116 patients with MCI were administered the Capacity to Consent to Treatment Instrument at baseline and at 1 to 3 (mean = 1.7) annual follow-up visits thereafter. Covariate-adjusted random coefficient regressions were used to examine differences in MDC trajectories across MCI and control participants, as well as to investigate the impact of conversion to Alzheimer disease on MCI patients’ MDC trajectories.
Results:
At baseline, MCI patients performed significantly below controls only on the three clinically relevant standards of appreciation, reasoning, and understanding. Compared with controls, MCI patients experienced significant declines over time on understanding but not on any other consent standard. Conversion affected both the elevation (a decrease in performance) and slope (acceleration in subsequent rate of decline) of MCI patients’ MDC trajectories on understanding. A trend emerged for conversion to be associated with a performance decrease on reasoning in the MCI group.
Conclusions:
Medical decision-making capacity (MDC) decline in mild cognitive impairment (MCI) is a relatively slow but detectable process. Over a 3-year period, patients with amnestic MCI show progressive decline in the ability to understand consent information. This decline accelerates after conversion to Alzheimer disease (AD), reflecting increasing vulnerability to decisional impairment. Clinicians and researchers working with MCI patients should give particular attention to the informed consent process when conversion to AD is suspected or confirmed.
GLOSSARY
= Alzheimer disease;
= Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center;
= Capacity to Consent to Treatment Instrument;
= Clinical Dementia Rating scale;
= Dementia Rating Scale, second edition;
= Geriatric Depression Scale;
= mild cognitive impairment;
= medical decision-making capacity;
= Mini-Mental State Examination;
= University of Alabama at Birmingham.
doi:10.1212/01.wnl.0000334301.32358.48
PMCID: PMC2676965  PMID: 18981368
20.  Profile of Cognitive Complaints in Vascular Mild Cognitive Impairment and Mild Cognitive Impairment 
ISRN Neurology  2013;2013:865827.
Objective. Vascular mild cognitive impairment (VaMCI) is differentiated from mild cognitive impairment (MCI) by the presence of vascular events such as stroke or small vessel disease. Typically, MCI and VaMCI patients present with subjective complaints regarding cognition; however, little is known about the specific nature of these complaints. We aimed to create a profile of subjective cognitive complaints in MCI and VaMCI patients with similar levels of objective cognitive performance. Methods. Twenty MCI and twenty VaMCI patients were recruited from a Memory Disorders Clinic in Toronto. Subjective cognitive complaints were assessed and categorized using the Neuropsychological Impairment Scale. Results. MCI and VaMCI patients achieved similar scores on measures of objective cognitive function (P > 0.100). However, the VaMCI group had more subjective complaints than the MCI group (P = 0.050), particularly in the critical items, cognitive efficiency, memory, and verbal learning domains of the Neuropsychological Impairment Scale. Conclusions. Our findings support the idea that VaMCI and MCI differ in their clinical profiles, independent of neuroimaging. VaMCI patients have significantly more subjective cognitive complaints and may be exhibiting particular deficits in memory, verbal learning, and cognitive efficiency. Our findings promote the need for further research into VaMCI-specific cognitive deficits.
doi:10.1155/2013/865827
PMCID: PMC3830842  PMID: 24288623
21.  Subjective Cognitive Complaints Contribute to Misdiagnosis of Mild Cognitive Impairment 
Subjective cognitive complaints are a criterion for the diagnosis of mild cognitive impairment (MCI), despite their uncertain relationship to objective memory performance in MCI. We aimed to examine self-reported cognitive complaints in subgroups of the Alzheimer’s Disease Neuroimaging Initiative (ADNI) MCI cohort to determine whether they are a valuable inclusion in the diagnosis of MCI or, alternatively, if they contribute to misdiagnosis. Subgroups of MCI were derived using cluster analysis of baseline neuropsychological test data from 448 ADNI MCI participants. Cognitive complaints were assessed via the Everyday Cognition (ECog) questionnaire, and discrepancy scores were calculated between self- and informant-report. Cluster analysis revealed Amnestic and Mixed cognitive phenotypes as well as a third Cluster-Derived Normal subgroup (41.3%), whose neuropsychological and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) Alzheimer’s disease (AD) biomarker profiles did not differ from a “robust” normal control group. This cognitively intact phenotype of MCI participants overestimated their cognitive problems relative to their informant, whereas Amnestic MCI participants with objective memory impairment underestimated their cognitive problems. Underestimation of cognitive problems was associated with positive CSF AD biomarkers and progression to dementia. Overall, there was no relationship between self-reported cognitive complaints and objective cognitive functioning, but significant correlations were observed with depressive symptoms. The inclusion of self-reported complaints in MCI diagnostic criteria may cloud rather than clarify diagnosis and result in high rates of misclassification of MCI. Discrepancies between self- and informant-report demonstrate that overestimation of cognitive problems is characteristic of normal aging while underestimation may reflect greater risk for cognitive decline.
doi:10.1017/S135561771400068X
PMCID: PMC4172502  PMID: 25156329
Mild cognitive impairment; Awareness; Cluster analysis; Diagnostic errors; Neuropsychology; Dementia; Alzheimer disease
22.  Different mechanisms of episodic memory failure in mild cognitive impairment 
Neuropsychologia  2005;43(11):1688-1697.
Mild cognitive impairment (MCI), defined as episodic memory impairment beyond what is expected in normal aging, is often associated with hippocampal atrophy (HA) and may represent incipient Alzheimer’s disease. However, recent studies suggest that MCI is very heterogeneous and multiple etiologies likely exist. One possibility is small vessel cerebrovascular disease (CVD). Specifically, we hypothesized that white matter hyperintensities(WMH),an MRI marker for CVD, would lead to impairments in executive control processes critical for working memory that may, in turn, result in episodic memory impairment. To test this hypothesis, we examined a group of subjects clinically diagnosed with MCI and used MRI to further subcategorize individuals as either MCI with severe white matter hyperintensities (MCI-WMH) or MCI with severe hippocampal atrophy (MCI-HA). MCI-WMH, MCI-HA, and matched control subjects each performed a battery of working memory and episodic memory tasks. Results showed that MCI-HA and MCI-WMH were equally impaired on the episodic memory task relative to controls, but MCI-WMH were additionally impaired on tests tapping verbal and spatial working memory abilities and attentional control processes. These results suggest that CVD and hippocampal dysfunction are associated with distinct neuropsychological profiles. Although both syndromes are associated with episodic memory deficits, CVD is additionally associated with working memory and executive control deficits. © 2005 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
doi:10.1016/j.neuropsychologia.2005.01.003
PMCID: PMC3771323  PMID: 16009250
Aging; Dementia; White matter hyperintensities; Working memory; Cerebrovascular disease; Hippocampus
23.  Subclinical cerebrovascular disease in mild cognitive impairment 
Neurology  2009;73(6):450-456.
Background:
Cerebrovascular disease (CVD) may contribute to mild cognitive impairment (MCI). We sought to determine the relation of white matter hyperintensity (WMH) volume and infarcts in brain MRI to MCI in a community-based sample.
Methods:
A total of 679 elderly persons without dementia underwent brain MRI. WMH and infarcts were quantified using research methods. WMH was adjusted for total cranial volume. The Petersen criteria were used to define MCI. MCI was further subclassified into amnestic and non-amnestic. We used logistic regression to relate WMH and infarcts to prevalent MCI.
Results:
WMH were associated with amnestic MCI (odds ratio [OR] = 1.9; 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.1, 3.4) but not non-amnestic MCI (OR = 1.2; 95% CI 0.4, 1.6) after adjusting for age, gender, ethnic group, education, and APOE-ɛ4. Infarcts were more strongly associated with non-amnestic MCI (OR = 2.7; 95% CI 1.5, 4.8) than amnestic MCI (OR = 1.4; 95% CI 0.9, 2.3). In secondary analyses using continuous cognitive scores as outcomes, WMH, but not infarcts, were related to memory, while infarcts were more strongly related with non-amnestic domains.
Conclusion:
White matter hyperintensity (WMH) is more strongly related to amnestic mild cognitive impairment (MCI). Infarcts are more strongly related to non-amnestic MCI. The nature of WMH in amnestic MCI requires further study.
GLOSSARY
= Alzheimer disease;
= Boston Diagnostic Aphasia Examination;
= Benton Visual Retention Test;
= cerebral amyloid angiopathy;
= confidence interval;
= cerebrovascular disease;
= fluid-attenuated inverse recovery;
= mild cognitive impairment;
= odds ratio;
= Selective Reminding Test;
= Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale–Revised;
= Washington/Hamilton Heights–Inwood Columbia Aging Project;
= white matter hyperintensity.
doi:10.1212/WNL.0b013e3181b1636a
PMCID: PMC2727144  PMID: 19667320
24.  Famous Landmark Identification in Amnestic Mild Cognitive Impairment and Alzheimer's Disease 
PLoS ONE  2014;9(8):e105623.
Background
Identification of famous landmarks (FLI), famous faces (FFI) and recognition of facial emotions (FER) is affected early in the course of Alzheimer's disease (AD). FFI, FER and FLI may represent domain specific tasks relying on activation of distinct regions of the medial temporal lobe, which are affected successively during the course of AD. However, the data on FFI and FER in MCI are controversial and FLI domain remains almost unexplored.
Objectives
To determine whether and how are these three specific domains impaired in head to head comparison of patients with amnestic MCI (aMCI) single domain (SD-aMCI) and multiple domain (MD-aMCI). We propose that FLI might be most reliable in differentiating SD-aMCI, which is considered to be an earlier stage of AD pathology spread out, from the controls.
Patients and Methods
A total of 114 patients, 13 with single domain (SD–aMCI) and 30 with multiple domains (MD–aMCI), 29 with mild AD and 42 controls underwent standard neurological and neuropsychological evaluations as well as tests of FLI, FER and FFI.
Results
Compared to the control group, AD subjects performed worse on FFI (p = 0.020), FER (p<0.001) and FLI (p<0.001), MD-aMCI group had significantly worse scores only on FLI (p = 0.002) and approached statistical significance on FER (0.053). SD-aMCI group performed significantly worse only on FLI (p = 0.028) compared to controls.
Conclusions
Patients with SD-aMCI had an isolated impairment restricted to FLI, while patients with MD–aMCI showed impairment in FLI as well as in FER. Patients with mild dementia due to AD have more extensive impairment of higher visual perception. The results suggest that FLI testing may contribute to identification of patients at risk of AD. We hypothesize that clinical examination of all three domains might reflect the spread of the disease from transentorhinal cortex, over amygdala to fusiform gyrus.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0105623
PMCID: PMC4140812  PMID: 25144755
25.  Evaluating Different Aspects of Prospective Memory in Amnestic and Nonamnestic Mild Cognitive Impairment 
ISRN Neurology  2014;2014:805929.
Prospective memory, the inability to remember an intended action, is a common complaint, but not formally assessed in most clinical and research studies of mild cognitive impairment (MCI). In this study, patients with amnestic mild cognitive impairment (aMCI), non-amnestic cognitive impairment (naMCI), and cognitively normal (CN) elders were assessed using the Miami Prospective Memory Test (MPMT). A unique aspect of the paradigm was that participants were scored for intention to perform, accuracy in recollection for specific elements of the task, and the need for reminder cues. Excellent test-retest stability was obtained for MPMT Event-Related (ER), combined Time-Related (TR) subscales, and total MPMT score for aMCI subjects. MPMT impairments were observed in 48.6% of aMCI, 29.4% of naMCI, and 10.0% of normal elderly participants. Prospective memory deficits were common in participants with aMCI, and occurred in almost a third of naMCI participants. Intention to perform and need for reminder cues were significantly more impaired than retrospective memory for specific details of the task. It is concluded that assessment of different elements of prospective memory is important in MCI research and that inability to remember intended actions is a significant feature in those as risk for Alzheimer's disease.
doi:10.1155/2014/805929
PMCID: PMC3963105  PMID: 24729893

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