White matter integrity and cortical metabolic associations in aging and dementia

Beth Kuczynski, Elizabeth Targan, Cindee Madison, Michael Weiner, Yu Zhang, Bruce R Reed, Helena C. Chui, William Jagust

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

39 Scopus citations

Abstract

Background: Studies show that white matter hyperintensities, regardless of location, primarily affect frontal lobe metabolism and function. This report investigated how regional white matter integrity (measured as fractional anisotropy [FA]) relates to brain metabolism, to unravel the complex relationship between white matter changes and brain metabolism. Objective: To elucidate the relationship between white matter integrity and gray matter metabolism using diffusion tensor imaging and fluorodeoxyglucose-positron emission tomography in a cohort of 16 subjects ranging from normal to demented (age, >55 years). Methods: Mean FA values from white matter regions underlying the medial prefrontal, inferior-lateral prefrontal, parietal association, and posterior temporal areas and the corpus callosum were regressed with glucose metabolism (by positron emission tomography), using statistical parametric mapping (P < 0.005; voxel cluster, >100). Regional cerebral glucose metabolism was the primary outcome measure. According to our hypothesis, those hypometabolic cortical regions affected by Alzheimer's disease would correlate with a lower FA of associated tracks. Results: Our data show inter-regional positive correlations between FA and gray matter metabolism for the prefrontal cortex, temporal, and parietal regions. Our results suggest that left prefrontal FA is associated with left temporal and parietal metabolism. Further, left posterior temporal FA correlated with left prefrontal metabolism. Finally, bilateral parietal FA correlated with bilateral temporal metabolism. Conclusions: These regions are associated with cognitive processes affected in Alzheimer's disease and cerebrovascular disease, suggesting a link with white matter degeneration and gray matter hypometabolism. Therefore, cortical function and white matter degeneration are related in aging and dementia.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)54-62
Number of pages9
JournalAlzheimer's and Dementia
Volume6
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 2010

Keywords

  • Alzheimer's disease
  • Dementia
  • DTI
  • FA
  • Metabolism
  • PET
  • White matter

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Policy
  • Epidemiology
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
  • Developmental Neuroscience
  • Clinical Neurology

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  • Cite this

    Kuczynski, B., Targan, E., Madison, C., Weiner, M., Zhang, Y., Reed, B. R., Chui, H. C., & Jagust, W. (2010). White matter integrity and cortical metabolic associations in aging and dementia. Alzheimer's and Dementia, 6(1), 54-62. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jalz.2009.04.1228