Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

PET finds increased cognitive reserve levels in highly educated pre-Alzheimer's patients

Date:
June 3, 2013
Source:
Society of Nuclear Medicine
Summary:
Highly educated individuals with mild cognitive impairment that later progressed to Alzheimer's disease cope better with the disease than individuals with a lower level of education in the same situation, according to a new study. In the study, neural reserve and neural compensation were both shown to play a role in determining cognitive reserve, as evidenced by positron emission tomography.

Highly educated individuals with mild cognitive impairment that later progressed to Alzheimer's disease cope better with the disease than individuals with a lower level of education in the same situation, according to research published in the June issue of The Journal of Nuclear Medicine. In the study "Metabolic Networks Underlying Cognitive Reserve in Prodromal Alzheimer Disease: A European Alzheimer Disease Consortium Project,"neural reserve and neural compensation were both shown to play a role in determining cognitive reserve, as evidenced by positron emission tomography (PET).

Cognitive reserve refers to the hypothesized capacity of an adult brain to cope with brain damage in order to maintain a relatively preserved functional level. Understanding the brain adaptation mechanisms underlying this process remains a critical question, and researchers of this study sought to investigate the metabolic basis of cognitive reserve in individuals with higher (more than 12 years) and lower (less than 12 years) levels of education who had mild cognitive impairment that progressed to Alzheimer's disease, also known as prodromal Alzheimer's disease.

"This study provides new insight into the functional mechanisms that mediate the cognitive reserve phenomenon in the early stages of Alzheimer's disease," said Silvia Morbelli, MD, lead author of the study. "A crucial role of the dorso-lateral prefrontal cortex was highlighted by demonstrating that this region is involved in a wide fronto-temporal and limbic functional network in patients with Alzheimer's disease and high education, but not in poorly educated Alzheimer's disease patients."

In the study, 64 patients with prodromal Alzheimer's disease and 90 control subjects -- coming from the brain PET project (chaired by Flavio Nobili, MD, in Genoa, Italy) of the European Alzheimer Disease Consortium -- underwentbrain 18F-FDG PET scans. Individuals were divided into a subgroup with a low level of education (42 controls and 36 prodromal Alzheimer's disease patients) and a highly educated subgroup (40 controls and 28 prodromal Alzheimer's disease patients). Brain metabolism was compared between education-matched groups of patients and controls, and then between highly and poorly educated prodromal Alzheimer's disease patients.

Higher metabolic activity was shown in the dorso-lateral prefrontal cortex for prodromal Alzheimer's disease patients. More extended and significant correlations of metabolism within the right dorso-lateral prefrontal cortex and other brain regions were found with highly educated than less educated prodromal Alzheimer's disease patients or even highly educated controls.

This result suggests that neural reserve and neural compensation are activated in highly educated prodromal Alzheimer's disease patients. Researchers concluded that evaluation of the implication of metabolic connectivity in cognitive reserve further confirms that adding a comprehensive evaluation of resting 18F-FDG PET brain distribution to standard inspection may allow a more complete comprehension of Alzheimer's disease pathophysiology and possibly may increase 18F-FDG PET diagnostic sensitivity.

"This work supports the notion that employing the brain in complex tasks and developing our own education may help in forming stronger 'defenses' against cognitive deterioration once Alzheimer knocks at our door," noted Morbelli."It's possible that, in the future, a combined approach evaluating resting metabolic connectivity and cognitive performance can be used on an individual basis to better predict cognitive decline or response to disease-modifying therapy."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Society of Nuclear Medicine. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Morbelli S, Perneczky R, Drzezga A, Frisoni GB, Caroli A, van Berckel BN, Ossenkoppele R, Guedj E, Didic M, Brugnolo A, Naseri M, Sambuceti G, Pagani M, Nobili F. Metabolic Networks Underlying Cognitive Reserve in Prodromal Alzheimer Disease: A European Alzheimer Disease Consortium Project. The Journal of Nuclear Medicine, 2013

Cite This Page:

Society of Nuclear Medicine. "PET finds increased cognitive reserve levels in highly educated pre-Alzheimer's patients." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 3 June 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/06/130603135515.htm>.
Society of Nuclear Medicine. (2013, June 3). PET finds increased cognitive reserve levels in highly educated pre-Alzheimer's patients. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 21, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/06/130603135515.htm
Society of Nuclear Medicine. "PET finds increased cognitive reserve levels in highly educated pre-Alzheimer's patients." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/06/130603135515.htm (accessed October 21, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

CDC Revamps Ebola Guidelines After Criticism

CDC Revamps Ebola Guidelines After Criticism

Newsy (Oct. 21, 2014) The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have issued new protocols for healthcare workers interacting with Ebola patients. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
WHO: Ebola Vaccine Trials to Start a in January

WHO: Ebola Vaccine Trials to Start a in January

AP (Oct. 21, 2014) Tens of thousands of doses of experimental Ebola vaccines could be available for "real-world" testing in West Africa as soon as January as long as they are deemed safe in soon to start trials, the World Health Organization said Tuesday. (Oct. 21) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
First-Of-Its-Kind Treatment Gives Man Ability To Walk Again

First-Of-Its-Kind Treatment Gives Man Ability To Walk Again

Newsy (Oct. 21, 2014) A medical team has for the first time given a man the ability to walk again after transplanting cells from his brain onto his severed spinal cord. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
CDC Issues New Ebola Guidelines for Health Workers

CDC Issues New Ebola Guidelines for Health Workers

Reuters - US Online Video (Oct. 21, 2014) The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has set up new guidelines for health workers taking care of patients infected with Ebola. Linda So reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins