Leucoaraiosis is associated with motor symptoms in otherwise normal older adults. Comorbid leucoaraiosis is predicted to contribute also to motor features in Parkinson’s disease but previous studies of white matter changes in Parkinson’s disease show variable results. No prior studies have compared directly the effects of both leucoaraiosis and the degree of nigrostriatal dopaminergic denervation on motor features. We investigated the effect of leucoaraiosis severity on motor impairment independent of the degree of nigrostriatal dopaminergic denervation in Parkinson’s disease. Seventy-three subjects with Parkinson’s disease (Hoehn and Yahr stages 1–3) underwent brain magnetic resonance and [11C]dihydrotetrabenazine vesicular monoamine transporter type 2 positron emission tomography imaging. Automated assessment of supratentorial fluid-attenuated inversion recovery magnetic resonance hyperintense white matter voxels was performed using cerebellar white matter as the intensity reference. White matter signal hyperintensity burden was log-transformed and normalized for brain volume. Unified Parkinson’s Disease Rating Scale total and subscore ratings were assessed to determine motor impairment. Subjects receiving dopaminergic medications were examined in the clinically defined ‘OFF’ state. Multivariate regression analysis with measures of white matter signal hyperintensity burden and nigrostriatal denervation as independent variables demonstrated a significant overall model for total motor Unified Parkinson's Disease Rating Scale scores (F = 11.4, P < 0.0001) with significant regression effects for both white matter signal hyperintensity burden (t = 2.0, β = 0.22, P = 0.045) and striatal monoaminergic binding (t = −3.5, β = −0.38, P = 0.0008). Axial motor impairment demonstrated a robust association with white matter signal hyperintensity burden (t = 4.0, β = 0.43, P = 0.0001) compared with striatal monoaminergic binding (t = −2.1, β = 0.22, P = 0.043). White matter signal hyperintensity burden regression effects for bradykinesia had borderline significance. No significant white matter signal hyperintensity burden effects were found for rigidity or tremor subscores. White matter signal hyperintensity burden was significantly higher in the subgroup with postural instability and gait difficulties compared with the tremor-predominant subgroup despite no significant differences in age or duration of disease. These findings indicate that increased white matter signal hyperintensity burden is associated with worse motor performance independent of the degree of nigrostriatal dopaminergic denervation in Parkinson’s disease. Comorbid white matter disease is a greater determinant of axial motor impairment than nigrostriatal dopaminergic denervation.
dopamine; motor; Parkinson’s disease; leucoaraiosis; magnetic resonance imaging; white matter hyperintensities
Sleep dysfunction and excessive daytime sleepiness are common in Parkinson disease (PD). Several studies suggest that PD patients exhibit high prevalence of sleep-disordered breathing (SDB). PD has a complex profile of neurochemical deficits in which abnormalities of different neurotransmitter systems may play significant and differing roles in the development of non-motor features. In the present study, we investigated whether SDB in PD is related to serotoninergic neuron degeneration. We used a cross-sectional design to assess the correlation between SDB and measures of caudal brainstem serotonin neuron integrity. Fifty one PD participants with mean disease duration of 6.0 (SD 3.7) years and mean age of 63.9 (SD 6.2) years were studied. We measured caudal brainstem serotoninergic innervation with [11C]DASB positron emission tomography (PET) imaging and striatal dopaminergic innervation with [11C]DTBZ PET imaging. SDB was assessed with polysomnography (PSG) and sleepiness with multiple sleep latency tests. Greater than half of participants exhibited PSG evidence of significant SDB; 12 participants had normal PSGs, 6 had mild SDB, 20 had moderate SDB, and 13 had severe SDB. We found no association between severity of SDB and caudal brainstem serotoninergic innervation in PD participants. Striatal dopaminergic denervation did not correlate with severity of SDB. We did find significant correlations between measures of motor function impairment and sleep quantity and quality in PD. Neither serotoninergic nor dopaminergic neuron degeneration is likely to play a major role in SDB observed in PD patients.
The Functional Activities Questionnaire (FAQ) and Alzheimer’s Disease Assessment Scale – cognitive subscale (ADAS-cog) are frequently-used indices of cognitive decline in Alzheimer’s disease (AD). The goal of this study was to compare FDG-PET and clinical measurements in a large sample of elderly subjects with memory disturbance. We examined relationships between glucose metabolism in FDG-PET regions of interest (FDG-ROIs), and ADAS-cog and FAQ scores in AD and mild cognitive impairment (MCI) patients enrolled in the Alzheimer’s Disease Neuroimaging Initiative (ADNI). Low glucose metabolism at baseline predicted subsequent ADAS-cog and FAQ decline. In addition, longitudinal glucose metabolism decline was associated with concurrent ADAS-cog and FAQ decline. Additionally, a power analysis revealed that FDG-ROI values have greater statistical power than ADAS-cog to detect attenuation of cognitive decline in AD and MCI patients. Glucose metabolism is a sensitive measure of change in cognition and functional ability in AD and MCI, and has value in predicting future cognitive decline.
FDG-PET; Alzheimer’s disease; Mild Cognitive Impairment
We assessed the relationship between consensus clinical diagnostic classification and neurochemical positron emission tomography imaging of striatal vesicular monoamine transporters and cerebrocortical deposition of aβ-amyloid in mild dementia. Seventy-five subjects with mild dementia (Mini-Mental State Examination score ≥ 18) underwent a conventional clinical evaluation followed by 11C-dihydrotetrabenazine positron emission tomography imaging of striatal vesicular monoamine transporters and 11C-Pittsburgh compound-B positron emission tomography imaging of cerebrocortical aβ-amyloid deposition. Clinical classifications were assigned by consensus of an experienced clinician panel. Neuroimaging classifications were assigned as Alzheimer’s disease, frontotemporal dementia or dementia with Lewy bodies on the basis of the combined 11C-dihydrotetrabenazine and 11C-Pittsburgh compound-B results. Thirty-six subjects were classified clinically as having Alzheimer’s disease, 25 as having frontotemporal dementia and 14 as having dementia with Lewy bodies. Forty-seven subjects were classified by positron emission tomography neuroimaging as having Alzheimer’s disease, 15 as having dementia with Lewy bodies and 13 as having frontotemporal dementia. There was only moderate agreement between clinical consensus and neuroimaging classifications across all dementia subtypes, with discordant classifications in ∼35% of subjects (Cohen’s κ = 0.39). Discordant classifications were least frequent in clinical consensus Alzheimer’s disease (17%), followed by dementia with Lewy bodies (29%) and were most common in frontotemporal dementia (64%). Accurate clinical classification of mild neurodegenerative dementia is challenging. Though additional post-mortem correlations are required, positron emission tomography imaging likely distinguishes subgroups corresponding to neurochemically defined pathologies. Use of these positron emission tomography imaging methods may augment clinical classifications and allow selection of more uniform subject groups in disease-modifying therapeutic trials and other prospective research involving subjects in the early stages of dementia.
Alzheimer’s disease; Lewy body dementia; frontotemporal dementia; amyloid; dopamine; diagnosis
This article introduces a hypometabolic convergence index (HCI) for the assessment of Alzheimer’s disease (AD), compares it to other biological, cognitive and clinical measures, and demonstrate its promise to predict clinical decline in mild cognitive impairment (MCI) patients using data from the AD Neuroimaging Initiative (ADNI). The HCI is intended to reflect in a single measurement the extent to which the pattern and magnitude of cerebral hypometabolism in an individual’s fluorodeoxyglucose positron emission tomography (FDG PET) image corresponds to that in probable AD patients, and is generated using a fully automated voxel-based image analysis algorithm. HCIs, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) hippocampal volume measurements, cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) assays, memory test scores, and clinical ratings were compared in 47 probable AD patients, 21 MCI patients who converted to probable AD within the next 18 months, 76 MCI patients who did not, and 47 normal controls (NCs) in terms of their ability to characterize clinical disease severity and predict conversion rates from MCI to probable AD. HCIs were significantly different in the probable AD, MCI converter, MCI stable and NC groups (p = 9e-17) and correlated with clinical disease severity. Using retrospectively characterized threshold criteria, MCI patients with either higher HCI’s or smaller hippocampal volumes had the highest hazard ratios (HRs) for 18-month progression to probable AD (7.38 and 6.34, respectively), and those with both had an even higher HR (36.72). In conclusion, the HCI, alone or in combination with certain other biomarker measurements, have the potential to help characterize AD and predict subsequent rates of clinical decline. More generally, our conversion index strategy could be applied to a range of imaging modalities and voxel-based image-analysis algorithms.
hypometabolic convergence index; Alzheimer’s disease; FDG; PET; MCI; hippocampal volume
Amyloid imaging with [11C]Pittsburgh Compound-B (PiB) provides in vivo data on plaque deposition in those with, or at risk for, Alzheimer’s disease (AD). We performed a gene-based association analysis of 15 quality-controlled amyloid-pathway associated candidate genes in 103 Alzheimer’s Disease Neuroimaging Initiative participants. The mean normalized PiB uptake value across four brain regions known to have amyloid deposition in AD was used as a quantitative phenotype. The minor allele of an intronic SNP within DHCR24 was identified and associated with a lower average PiB uptake. Further investigation at whole-brain voxel-wise level indicated that non-carriers of the minor allele had higher PiB uptake in frontal regions compared to carriers. DHCR24 has been previously shown to confer resistance against beta-amyloid and oxidative stress-induced apoptosis, thus our findings support a neuroprotective role. Pathway-based genetic analysis of targeted molecular imaging phenotypes appears promising to help elucidate disease pathophysiology and identify potential therapeutic targets.
Alzheimer’s disease; ADNI; Pathway-based gene analysis; PiB-PET; Endophenotype; Voxel-based analysis
To evaluate the cause of diagnostic errors in the visual interpretation of positron emission tomography scans with 18F-fluorodeoxyglucose (FDG-PET) in patients with frontotemporal lobar degeneration (FTLD) and Alzheimer's disease (AD).
Twelve trained raters unaware of clinical and autopsy information independently reviewed FDG-PET scans and provided their diagnostic impression and confidence of either FTLD or AD. Six of these raters also recorded whether metabolism appeared normal or abnormal in 5 predefined brain regions in each hemisphere – frontal cortex, anterior cingulate cortex, anterior temporal cortex, temporoparietal cortex and posterior cingulate cortex. Results were compared to neuropathological diagnoses.
Academic medical centers
45 patients with pathologically confirmed FTLD (n=14) or AD (n=31)
Raters had a high degree of diagnostic accuracy in the interpretation of FDG-PET scans; however, raters consistently found some scans more difficult to interpret than others. Unanimity of diagnosis among the raters was more frequent in patients with AD (27/31, 87%) than in patients with FTLD (7/14, 50%) (p = 0.02). Disagreements in interpretation of scans in patients with FTLD largely occurred when there was temporoparietal hypometabolism, which was present in 7 of the 14 FTLD scans and 6 of the 7 lacking unanimity. Hypometabolism of anterior cingulate and anterior temporal regions had higher specificities and positive likelihood ratios for FTLD than temporoparietal hypometabolism had for AD.
Temporoparietal hypometabolism in FTLD is common and may cause inaccurate interpretation of FDG-PET scans. An interpretation paradigm that focuses on the absence of hypometabolism in regions typically affected in AD before considering FTLD is likely to misclassify a significant portion of FTLD scans. Anterior cingulate and/or anterior temporal hypometabolism indicates a high likelihood of FTLD, even when temporoparietal hypometabolism is present. Ultimately, the accurate interpretation of FDG-PET scans in patients with dementia cannot rest on the presence or absence of a single region of hypometabolism, but must take into account the relative hypometabolism of all brain regions.
We compared the frequency of rhinorrhea between 34 Parkinson disease (PD) subjects and 15 normal controls (NC), and explored relationships between rhinorrhea and clinical functions, and degree of nigrostriatal dopaminergic denervation using 11C-dihydrotetrabenazine (DTBZ) brain positron emission tomography (PET) imaging. 68% (23/34) of PD subjects reported rhinorrhea of any cause compared to 27% (4/15) of NC (χ2=7.07, p=0.008). Rhinorrhea frequency remained higher in the PD group after excluding possible rhinitic etiologies: 35% (12/34) PD versus 7% (1/15) of NC (χ2=4.38, p=0.04). There were no differences in demographics, nigrostriatal dopaminergic denervation, and clinical motor or non-motor variables between PD subjects with and without rhinorrhea, except that more PD subjects with rhinorrhea complained of lightheadedness (52% vs. 9%, χ2=5.85, p=0.02). Rhinorrhea is a common non-dopaminergic feature of PD, unrelated to olfactory or motor deficits. Further investigations are needed to determine if rhinorrhea correlates with sympathetic denervation or other autonomic symptoms in PD.
Parkinson disease; rhinorrhea; PET; olfaction; dopamine transporter
Fluorodeoxyglucose positron emission tomography (FDG-PET) studies report characteristic patterns of cerebral hypometabolism in probable Alzheimer's disease (pAD) and amnestic mild cognitive impairment (aMCI). This study aims to characterize the consistency of regional hypometabolism in pAD and aMCI patients enrolled in the AD Neuroimaging Initiative (ADNI) using statistical parametric mapping (SPM) and bootstrap resampling, and to compare bootstrap based reliability index to the commonly used type-I error approach with or without correction for multiple comparisons. Batched SPM5 was run for each of 1,000 bootstrap iterations to compare FDG-PET images from 74 pAD and 142 aMCI patients, respectively, to 82 normal controls. Maps of the hypometabolic voxels detected for at least a specific percentage of times over the 1000 runs were examined and compared to an overlap of the hypometabolic maps obtained from 3 randomly partitioned independent sub-datasets. The results from the bootstrap derived reliability of regional hypometabolism in the overall data set were similar to that observed in each of the three non-overlapping sub-sets using family-wise error. Strong but non-linear association was found between the bootstrap based reliability index and the type-I error. For threshold p=0.0005, pAD was associated with extensive hypometabolic voxels in the posterior cingulate/precuneus and parietotemporal regions with reliability between 90% and 100%. Bootstrap analysis provides an alternative to the parametric family-wise error approach used to examine consistency of hypometabolic brain voxels in pAD and aMCI patients. These results provide a foundation for the use of bootstrap analysis characterize statistical ROIs or search regions in both cross-sectional and longitudinal FDG PET studies. This approach offers promise in the early detection and tracking of AD, the evaluation of AD-modifying treatments, and other biologically or clinical important measurements using brain images and voxel-based data analysis techniques.
Alzheimer's Disease; MCI; FDG PET; Reproducibility of Results; Reliability; Bootstrap Resampling; Familywise Error; SPM
Amyloid imaging with [11 C]Pittsburgh Compound-B (PiB) provides in vivo data on plaque deposition in those with, or at risk for, Alzheimer’s disease (AD). We performed a gene-based association analysis of 15 quality-controlled amyloid-pathway associated candidate genes in 103 Alzheimer’s Disease Neuroimaging Initiative participants. The mean normalized PiB uptake value across four brain regions known to have amyloid deposition in AD was used as a quantitative phenotype. The minor allele of an intronic SNP within DHCR24 was identified and associated with a lower average PiB uptake. Further investigation at whole-brain voxel-wise level indicated that non-carriers of the minor allele had higher PiB uptake in frontal regions compared to carriers. DHCR24 has been previously shown to confer resistance against beta-amyloid and oxidative stress-induced apoptosis, thus our findings support a neuroprotective role. Pathway-based genetic analysis of targeted molecular imaging phenotypes appears promising to help elucidate disease pathophysiology and identify potential therapeutic targets.
Alzheimer’s disease; ADNI; Pathway-based gene analysis; PiB-PET; Endophenotype; Voxel-based analysis
To compare assessment of regional cerebral metabolic changes with DTBZ-PET measurement of regional cerebral blood flow (K1) and FDG-PET measurement of regional cerebral glucose uptake (CMRglc) in a clinically representative sample of mild dementia and mild cognitive impairment (MCI) subjects. We hypothesized that DTBZ-PET K1 and FDG-PET CMRglc provide equivalent information.
Design, Setting, Participants
DTBZ-PET K1 measurement of regional cerebral blood flow and FDG-PET CMRglc measurement of regional cerebral glucose uptake was performed in 50 subjects with either mild dementia (MMSE ≥ 18) or MCI drawn from a university based Cognitive Disorders Clinic. Results were compared with 80 normal control subjects.
Main Outcome Measures
DTBZ-PET regional K1 measurements and FDG-PET CMRglc measurements were compared with standard correlation analysis. The overall patterns of DTBZ-PET K1 deficits and FDG-PET CMRglc deficits were assessed with stereotaxic surface projections (SSP) of parametric images.
DTBZ-PET regional K1 measurements and FDG-PET CMRglc measurements were highly correlated, both within and between subjects. SSP maps of deficits in DTBZ-PET regional K1 measurements and FDG-PET CMRglcs were markedly similar. DTBZ-PET K1 SSP maps exhibited a mild decrease in sensitivity relative to FDG-PET CMRglc maps.
DTBZ-PET K1 and FDG-PET CMRglc provide comparable information in assessment of regional cerebral metabolic deficits in mild dementia and MCI. K1 measures can assess regional cerebral metabolism deficits accurately in mild dementia and MCI. K1 assessments of regional cerebral metabolic deficits can be combined with tracer binding results to improve of utility of PET imaging in mild dementia and MCI.
Alzheimer's disease (AD) is characterized by specific and progressive reductions in fluorodeoxyglucose positron emission tomography (FDG PET) measurements of the cerebral metabolic rate for glucose (CMRgl), some of which may precede the onset of symptoms. In this report, we describe twelve-month CMRgl declines in 69 probable AD patients, 154 amnestic mild cognitive impairment (MCI) patients, and 79 cognitively normal controls (NCs) from the AD Neuroimaging Initiative (ADNI) using statistical parametric mapping (SPM). We introduce the use of an empirically predefined statistical region-of-interest (sROI) to characterize CMRgl declines with optimal power and freedom from multiple comparisons, and we estimate the number of patients needed to characterize AD-slowing treatment effects in multi-center randomized clinical trials (RCTs). The AD and MCI groups each had significant twelve-month CMRgl declines bilaterally in posterior cingulate, medial and lateral parietal, medial and lateral temporal, frontal and occipital cortex, which were significantly greater than those in the NC group and correlated with measures of clinical decline. Using sROIs defined based on training sets of baseline and follow-up images to assess CMRgl declines in independent test sets from each patient group, we estimate the need for 66 AD patients or 217 MCI patients per treatment group to detect a 25% AD-slowing treatment effect in a twelve-month, multi-center RCT with 80% power and two-tailed alpha=0.05, roughly one-tenth the number of the patients needed to study MCI patients using clinical endpoints. Our findings support the use of FDG PET, brain-mapping algorithms and empirically pre-defined sROIs in RCTs of AD-slowing treatments.
This is a progress report of the Alzheimer's Disease Neuroimaging Initiative (ADNI) PET Core.
The Core has supervised the acquisition, quality control, and analysis of longitudinal [18F]fluorodeoxyglucose PET (FDG-PET) data in approximately half of the ADNI cohort. In an “add on” study, approximately 100 subjects also underwent scanning with [11C]PIB-PET for amyloid imaging. The Core developed quality control procedures and standardized image acquisition by developing an imaging protocol that has been widely adopted in academic and pharmaceutical industry studies. Data processing provides users with scans that have identical orientation and resolution characteristics despite acquisition on multiple scanner models. The Core labs have used a number of different approaches to characterize differences between subject groups (AD, MCI, controls), to examine longitudinal change over time in glucose metabolism and amyloid deposition, and to assess the use of FDG-PET as a potential outcome measure in clinical trials.
ADNI data indicate that FDG-PET increases statistical power over traditional cognitive measures, might aid subject selection, and could substantially reduce the sample size in a clinical trial. PIB-PET data showed expected group differences, and identified subjects with significant annual increases in amyloid load across the subject groups. The next activities of the PET core in ADNI will entail developing standardized protocols for amyloid imaging using the [18F]-labeled amyloid imaging agent AV45, which can be delivered to virtually all ADNI sites.
ADNI has demonstrated the feasibility and utility of multicenter PET studies and is helping to clarify the role of biomarkers in the study of aging and dementia.
PET; fluorodeoxyglucose; amyloid imaging; biomarkers
Cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) measures of Ab and tau, Pittsburgh Compound B (PIB) imaging and hippocampal atrophy are promising Alzheimer’s disease biomarkers yet the associations between them are not known. We applied a validated, automated hippocampal labeling method and 3D radial distance mapping to the 1.5T structural magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) data of 388 ADNI subjects with baseline CSF Ab42, total tau (t-tau) and phosphorylated tau (p-tau181) and 98 subjects with positron emission tomography (PET) imaging using PIB. We used linear regression to investigate associations between hippocampal atrophy and average cortical, parietal and precuneal PIB standardized uptake value ratio (SUVR) and CSF Ab42, t-tau, p-tau181, t-tau/Ab42 and p-tau181/Ab42. All CSF measures showed significant associations with hippocampal volume and radial distance in the pooled sample. Strongest correlations were seen for p-tau181, followed by p-tau181/Ab42 ratio, t-tau/Ab42 ratio, t-tau and Ab42. p-tau181 showed stronger correlation in ApoE4 carriers, while t-tau showed stronger correlation in ApoE4 noncarriers. Of the 3 PIB measures the precuneal SUVR showed strongest associations with hippocampal atrophy.
Alzheimer’s disease; MRI; Magnetic resonance imaging; Imaging; PIB; Amyloid imaging; Abeta; tau; Hippocampus; Atrophy; Biomarkers; ADNI
Functional imaging biomarkers of cancer treatment response offer the potential for early determination of outcome through assessment of biochemical, physiological, and micro-environmental readouts. Cell death may result in an immunological response thus complicating interpretation of biomarker readouts. This study evaluated the temporal impact of treatment-associated inflammatory activity on diffusion-MRI and FDG-PET imaging biomarkers to delineate the effects of the inflammatory response on imaging readouts.
Rats with intracerebral 9L gliosarcomas were separated into four groups consisting of control, an immunosuppressive agent dexamethasone (Dex), 1,3-bis(2-chloroethyl)-1-nitrosourea (BCNU), and BCNU+Dex (BCNU+Dex). Animals were imaged using diffusion-weighted MRI and FDG-PET at 0, 3 and 7 days post-treatment.
In the BCNU and BCNU+Dex treated animal groups, diffusion values increased progressively over the 7 day study period to about 23% over baseline. FDG %SUV decreased at day 3 (−30.9%) but increased over baseline levels at day 7 (+20.1%). FDG-PET of BCNU+Dex treated animals were found to have %SUV reductions of −31.4% and −24.7% at days 3 and 7, respectively following treatment. Activated macrophages were observed on day 7 in the BCNU treatment group with much fewer found in the BCNU+Dex group.
Results revealed treatment-associated inflammatory response following tumor therapy resulted in accentuation of tumor diffusion response along with a corresponding increase in tumor FDG uptake due to the presence of glucose-consuming activated macrophages. The dynamics and magnitude of potential inflammatory response should be considered when interpreting imaging biomarker results.
Diffusion; MRI; ADC; positron emission tomography; FDG; brain tumor
This work reports a principal component analysis (PCA)-based approach for reducing bias in distribution volume ratio (DVR) estimates from Logan plots in positron emission tomography (PET). Comparison has been made of all existing bias-removal methods with the proposed PCA method, for both single-estimate PET studies and intervention studies where pre- and post-intervention estimates are made. Bias in Logan-based DVR estimates is because of the noise in the PET time-activity curves (TACs) that propagates as correlated errors in dependent and independent variables of the Logan equation. Intervention studies show this same bias but also higher variance in DVR estimates. In this work, noise in the TACs was reduced by fitting the curves to a low-dimension PCA-based linear model, leading to reduced bias and variance in DVR. For validating the approach, TACs with realistic noise were simulated for a 11C-labeled tracer with carfentanil (CFN)-like kinetics for both single-measurement and intervention studies. Principal component analysis and existing methods were applied to the simulated data and their performance was compared by statistical analysis. The results indicated that existing methods either removed only part of the bias or reduced bias at the expense of precision. The proposed method removed ∼90% of the bias while also improving precision in both single- and dual-measurement simulations. After validation of the proposed method in simulations, PCA, along with the existing methods, was applied to human [11C]CFN data acquired for both single estimation of DVR and dual-estimation intervention studies. Similar results were observed in human scans as were seen in the simulation studies.
parametric PET; PET (positron emission tomography); principal component analysis; receptor density measurements
The regional brain distribution of (2R,3R)-5-[ [18F]fluoroethoxy-benzovesamicol ((-)-[18F]FEOBV), a radioligand for the vesicular acetylcholine transporter (VAChT), was examined in vivo in mice, rats, and rhesus monkeys.
Regional brain distributions of (-)-[18F]FEOBV in mice were determined using ex vivo dissection. MicroPET imaging was used to determine the regional brain pharmacokinetics of the radioligand in rat and rhesus monkey brains.
In all three species, clear heterogeneous regional brain distributions were obtained, with the rank order of brain tissues (striatum>thalamus>cortex>cerebellum) consistent with the distribution of cholinergic nerve terminals containing the VAChT.
(-)-[18F]FEOBV remains a viable candidate for further development as an in vivo imaging agent for Positron Emission Tomography (PET) studies of the VAChT in the human brain.
vesamicol; vesicular transporter; PET
In mostly small single-center studies, Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is associated with characteristic and progressive reductions in fluorodeoxyglucose positron emission tomography (PET) measurements of the regional cerebral metabolic rate for glucose (CMRgl). The AD Neuroimaging Initiative (ADNI) is acquiring FDG PET, volumetric magnetic resonance imaging, and other biomarker measurements in a large longitudinal multi-center study of initially mildly affected probable AD (pAD) patients, amnestic mild cognitive impairment (aMCI) patients, who are at increased AD risk, and cognitively normal controls (NC), and we are responsible for analyzing the PET images using statistical parametric mapping (SPM). Here we compare baseline CMRgl measurements from 74 pAD patients and 142 aMCI patients to those from 82 NC, we correlate CMRgl with categorical and continuous measures of clinical disease severity, and we compare apolipoprotein E (APOE) ε4 carriers to non-carriers in each of these subject groups. In comparison with NC, the pAD and aMCI groups each had significantly lower CMRgl bilaterally in posterior cingulate, precuneus, parietotemporal and frontal cortex. Similar reductions were observed when categories of disease severity or lower Mini-Mental State Exam (MMSE) scores were correlated with lower CMRgl. However, when analyses were restricted to the pAD patients, lower MMSE scores were significantly correlated with lower left frontal and temporal CMRgl. These findings from a large, multi-site study support previous single-site findings, supports the characteristic pattern of baseline CMRgl reductions in AD and aMCI patients, as well as preferential anterior CMRgl reductions after the onset of AD dementia.
Alzheimer’s disease; MCI; MMSE; Positron Emission Tomography
Olfactory dysfunction is common in subjects with Parkinson’s disease. The pathophysiology of such dysfunction, however, remains poorly understood. Neurodegeneration within central regions involved in odour perception may contribute to olfactory dysfunction in Parkinson’s disease. Central cholinergic deficits occur in Parkinson’s disease and cholinergic neurons innervate regions, such as the limbic archicortex, involved in odour perception. We investigated the relationship between performance on an odour identification task and forebrain cholinergic denervation in Parkinson’s disease subjects without dementia. Fifty-eight patients with Parkinson’s disease (mean Hoehn and Yahr stage 2.5 ± 0.5) without dementia (mean Mini-Mental State Examination, 29.0 ± 1.4) underwent a clinical assessment, [11C]methyl-4-piperidinyl propionate acetylcholinesterase brain positron emission tomography and olfactory testing with the University of Pennsylvania Smell Identification Test. The diagnosis of Parkinson’s disease was confirmed by [11C]dihydrotetrabenazine vesicular monoamine transporter type 2 positron emission tomography. We found that odour identification test scores correlated positively with acetylcholinesterase activity in the hippocampal formation (r = 0.56, P < 0.0001), amygdala (r = 0.50, P < 0.0001) and neocortex (r = 0.46, P = 0.0003). Striatal monoaminergic activity correlated positively with odour identification scores (r = 0.30, P < 0.05). Multiple regression analysis including limbic (hippocampal and amygdala) and neocortical acetylcholinesterase activity as well as striatal monoaminergic activity, using odour identification scores as the dependent variable, demonstrated a significant regressor effect for limbic acetylcholinesterase activity (F = 10.1, P < 0.0001), borderline for striatal monoaminergic activity (F = 1.6, P = 0.13), but not significant for cortical acetylcholinesterase activity (F = 0.3, P = 0.75). Odour identification scores correlated positively with scores on cognitive measures of episodic verbal learning (r = 0.30, P < 0.05). These findings indicate that cholinergic denervation of the limbic archicortex is a more robust determinant of hyposmia than nigrostriatal dopaminergic denervation in subjects with moderately severe Parkinson's disease. Greater deficits in odour identification may identify patients with Parkinson's disease at risk for clinically significant cognitive impairment.
acetylcholinesterase; cognitive impairment; Parkinson’s disease; positron emission tomography; smell
SPG3A/atlastin-1 gene mutations cause an autosomal dominant form of hereditary spastic paraplegia (SPG3A-HSP). We used positron emission tomography with [11C]DTBZ to assess nigrostriatal dopaminergic integrity in two unrelated adults with SPG3A-HSP due to the common SPG3A/atlastin-1 mutation, R239C. Nigrostriatal dopaminergic terminal density was normal. A difference from the human pattern of neurodegeneration is a critical limitation of this Drosophila model of SPG3A-HSP. This major difference between human SPG3A/atlastin-1 mutations and the Drosophila atll phenotype has several possible explanations.
atlastin; dopamine; striatum; dihydrotetrabenazine; positron emission tomography
We performed univariate and multivariate discriminant analysis of FDG-PET scans to evaluate their ability to identify Alzheimer’s disease (AD). FDG-PET scans came from two sources: 17 AD patients and 33 healthy elderly controls were scanned at the University of Michigan; 102 early AD patients and 20 healthy elderly controls were scanned at the Technical University of Munich, Germany. We selected a derivation sample of 20 AD patients and 20 healthy controls matched on age with the remainder divided into 5 replication samples. The sensitivity and specificity of diagnostic AD-markers and threshold criteria from the derivation sample were determined in the replication samples. Although both univariate and multivariate analyses produced markers with high classification accuracy in the derivation sample, the multivariate marker’s diagnostic performance in the replication samples was superior. Further, supplementary analysis showed its performance to be unaffected by the loss of key regions. Multivariate measures of AD utilize the covariance structure of imaging data and provide complementary, clinically relevant information that may be superior to univariate measures.
Prominent interindividual and sex-dependent differences have been described in responses to sustained pain and other stressful stimuli. Variations in μ-opioid receptor-mediated endogenous opioid neurotransmission may underlie some of these processes. We examined both baseline μ-opioid receptor levels and the activation of this neurotransmitter system during sustained pain using positron emission tomography in a sample of young healthy men and women. Women were studied twice, during low and high estrogen states. The high-estrogen state was associated with regional increases in baseline μ-opioid receptor availability in vivo and a greater activation of endogenous opioid neurotransmission during the pain stressor. The latter did not differ from that obtained in males. During the low estrogen condition, however, significant reductions in endogenous opioid tone were observed at the level of thalamus, nucleus accumbens, and amygdala, which were associated with hyperalgesic responses. Estrogen-associated variations in the activity of μ-opioid neurotransmission correlated with individual ratings of the sensory and affective perceptions of the pain and the subsequent recall of that experience. These data demonstrate a significant role of estrogen in modulating endogenous opioid neurotransmission and associated psychophysical responses to a pain stressor in humans.
μ-opioid receptors; pain; stress; sex differences; PET; human