There has been little investigation on the association between cognitive impairment and the microbleeds (MBs) frequently seen in subcortical vascular dementia (SVaD). One possible mechanism of cognitive decline in individuals with SVaD could be disruption of cholinergic fibers by vascular lesions. Central cholinergic circuits in human brain can be tested non-invasively by means of a transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) protocol named short latency afferent inhibition (SAI) of motor cortex. In the present study, we used this test in SvaD patients with and without MBs. SAI was evaluated in 13 SVaD patients with MBs (MB-positive group) and the data were compared with those from a group of 15 SVaD patients without MBs (MB-negative group) and with those from 20 healthy subjects. Moreover, we studied covariation of individual SAI values with the Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE) total score and subscores. SAI was significantly reduced in the MB-positive group when compared with the MB-negative group and the control subjects. Total MMSE score, "attention and calculation" and "orientation" subscores were significantly lower in the MB-positive group than in the MB-negative group; SAI showed a positive correlation with total MMSE score. Adjustment for age, gender, education, presence of lacunae, severe white matter hyperintensities or severe periventricular hyperintensities did not affect these findings. This study provides novel physiological evidence that MBs have an impact on central cholinergic function that is independent of the extent of associated white matter changes and ischaemic stroke. This finding shows that TMS have potential diagnostic and therapeutic implications. TMS studies may help in evaluating the causes of cognitive impairment in cerebrovascular diseases.

Cognitive function and cholinergic transmission in patients with subcortical vascular dementia and microbleeds: a TMS study

DE BLASI, Pierpaolo;
2011

Abstract

There has been little investigation on the association between cognitive impairment and the microbleeds (MBs) frequently seen in subcortical vascular dementia (SVaD). One possible mechanism of cognitive decline in individuals with SVaD could be disruption of cholinergic fibers by vascular lesions. Central cholinergic circuits in human brain can be tested non-invasively by means of a transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) protocol named short latency afferent inhibition (SAI) of motor cortex. In the present study, we used this test in SvaD patients with and without MBs. SAI was evaluated in 13 SVaD patients with MBs (MB-positive group) and the data were compared with those from a group of 15 SVaD patients without MBs (MB-negative group) and with those from 20 healthy subjects. Moreover, we studied covariation of individual SAI values with the Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE) total score and subscores. SAI was significantly reduced in the MB-positive group when compared with the MB-negative group and the control subjects. Total MMSE score, "attention and calculation" and "orientation" subscores were significantly lower in the MB-positive group than in the MB-negative group; SAI showed a positive correlation with total MMSE score. Adjustment for age, gender, education, presence of lacunae, severe white matter hyperintensities or severe periventricular hyperintensities did not affect these findings. This study provides novel physiological evidence that MBs have an impact on central cholinergic function that is independent of the extent of associated white matter changes and ischaemic stroke. This finding shows that TMS have potential diagnostic and therapeutic implications. TMS studies may help in evaluating the causes of cognitive impairment in cerebrovascular diseases.
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1349
1358
http://www.springer.com/medicine/neurology/journal/702
Microbleeds; Subcortical vascular dementia; Transcranial magnetic stimulation; Short latency afferent inhibition; Mini-Mental State Examination
Nardone R; De Blasi P; Seidl M; Höller Y; Caleri F; Tezzon F; Ladurner G; Golaszewski S; Trinka E.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/2318/89679
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