Motor cortex hypointensity on susceptibility-weighted imaging: a potential imaging marker of iron accumulation in patients with cognitive impairment
To assess the prevalence and characteristics of motor cortex hypointensity on 3-T susceptibility-weighted imaging (SWI) in patients with cognitive impairment and examine its clinical significance.
The institutional review board approved this retrospective study and waived the requirement for informed consent. A total of 127 patients with a clinical diagnosis of probable Alzheimer’s disease (AD) (n = 32) or mild cognitive impairment (MCI) (n = 95) and 127 age- and sex-matched control subjects underwent 3-T brain magnetic resonance imaging. SWI was analyzed for both subjective visual scoring and the quantitative estimation of phase shift in the posterior bank of the motor cortex. A multivariate logistic regression analysis was performed to identify clinical and imaging variables associated with motor cortex hypointensity on SWI.
Motor cortex hypointensity on SWI was observed in 94/127 cognitively impaired patients (74.0%) and 72/127 control subjects (56.7%) (p = 0.004). Age was the only variable that was significantly associated with motor cortex hypointensity in patients with cognitive impairment (odds ratio, 1.15; 95% confidence interval, 1.065–1.242; p < 0.001). The quantitative analysis confirmed a significant increase in phase shifting in the posterior bank of the motor cortex in patients with positive motor cortex hypointensity on SWI (p < 0.001).
Motor cortex hypointensity on SWI was more frequently found in patients with cognitive impairment than in age-matched controls and was positively associated with age. Thus, it may be a potential imaging marker of iron accumulation in patients with MCI or AD.
KeywordsDementia Alzheimer’s disease Cognitive dysfunction Magnetic resonance imaging Susceptibility-weighted imaging Iron
Compliance with ethical standards
This work was funded by the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) Grant funded by the Korean government (MSIP) (No. 2017R1A2B4010634) and by a grant from the Korea Health Technology R&D Project through the Korea Health Industry Development Institute (KHID), funded by the Ministry of Health and Welfare, Republic of Korea (Grant No. HI18C1038).
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards. For this type of study formal consent is not required.
For this type of retrospective study formal consent is not required.
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