DTI measures predict the performance on cognitive tests in elderly and patients with early Alzheimer's disease
Ni H, Zhong J, Kavcic V
University of Rochester
Alzheimers disease (AD), a neurodegenerative disorder associated with progressive functional decline, affects somal, dendritic, and axonal structures in the brain. We hypothesized that alteration in the white matter (WM) correlates with cognitive status. We tested this assumption on15 AD patients and 18 age-matched controls by neuropsychological testing and by DTI measurements of major WM structures. The results showed that the DTI measures can predict 13 % to 55 % of variance in the performance on 5 of 7 neuropsychological tests. These findings demonstrate that cognitive performance does not depend only on the intact cortex but also on intact WM structures.