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Abstract #1463

Functional connectivity of white matter as a biomarker of cognitive decline in Alzheimer’s disease

Yurui Gao1,2, Anirban Sengupta1, Muwei Li1,3, Zhongliang Zu1,3, Baxter P Rogers1,3, Adam W Anderson1,2,3, Zhaohua Ding1,4, and John C Gore1,2,3
1Vanderbilt University Institute of Imaging Science, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville, TN, United States, 2Biomedical Engineering, Vanderbilt University, Nashville, TN, United States, 3Radiology and Radiological Sciences, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville, TN, United States, 4Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, Vanderbilt University, Nashville, TN, United States

Pathological alterations of white matter (WM) have been reported during the development of Alzheimer’s disease (AD). This study extended our previous rsfMRI analyses of WM tract BOLD correlations to evaluate WM functional connectivity (FC) in 383 subjects at different stages of cognitive impairment and found that WM FCs 1) decline regionally in late AD groups relative to a control group, 2) are related to cognitive behavioral scores, and 3) are well-performing features for distinguishing AD patients from controls. These findings suggest the potential of WM FC, which has been overlooked, as a novel neuroimaging biomarker to assess AD progression.

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