Martin Griebe1, Alex Frster1, Michle Wessa2, Christina Rossmanith1, Tamara Sauer1, Kathrin Zohsel1, Andrea V. King2, Michael G. Hennerici1, Achim Gass1, Kristina Szabo1
1Department of Neurology, UniversittsMedizin Mannheim, University of Heidelberg, Mannheim, Germany; 2Department of Cognitive & Clinical Neuroscience, Central Institute of Mental Health, University of Heidelberg, Mannheim, Germany
Cerebral white matter lesions (WML) appear to correspond to a continuum from normal functioning to clinically overt neurological syndromes. Disturbance of the structural integrity of cerebral fibre tracts might be one explanation for this development. Of 34 healthy elderly subjects we compared 3T MRI data in those with mild (n=22) and advanced (n=12) WML. In subjects with advanced WML, the corpus callosum was atrophic and had a reduced fractional anisotropy as revealed by tract-based spatial statistics (TBSS). Thus, loss of tissue integrity due to spatially remote and clinically silent WML appears to be already detectable in healthy elderly individuals.