This Swedish study looked at the correlation between subcortical gray
matter atrophy and cognition in the early stages (6 years post
diagnosis) of relapsing-remitting MS. The patient cohort had relatively
mild disability and low lesion load. 170 subjects were included in this
study, of which there were 50 healthy controls and 120 who had
Structural MRI and neuropsychological
tests were performed. Cognition was evaluated in 7 domains including:
executive function, verbal memory, information processing speed,
visuospatial memory, working memory, attention and psychomotor speed.
Deep gray matter volumes were segmented automatically.
from this study showed that most deep gray matter volumes were reduced
and it was most pronounced in the thalamus, caudate and pallidum, with
larger effects on average in males than in females. All cognitive
domains apart from visuospatial memory were affected in men. None were
significantly affected in women. Overall, it was found that thalamic
volume, sex and education best predicted average cognition. This shows
the association between certain subcortical structures and cognition.
Authors: Schoonheim MM, Popescu V, Rueda Lopes FC, Wiebenga OT
Source: Neurology. 2012 Sep 26. [Epub ahead of print]
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