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The Functional Assessment of Cancer Therapy—Cognitive Function (FACT-Cog) is a questionnaire that is used to evaluate the quality of life and cognitive functions according to individual self-reports. The aim of this study was to investigate the validity and reliability of the Turkish version of the FACT-Cog.
Cancer patients who were treated with chemo or radiotherapy and had a score of 24/30 and more in Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE) were included in this study. Cognitive functions assessed with the FACT-Cog and the European Organization of Research and Treatment of Cancer Quality of Life Core Questionnaire Core 30: Cognitive Function subscale (EORTC QLQ-CF).
One hundred and forty cancer patients [female = 87 (62.1%), male = 53 (37.9%)] were included. The mean age of the participants was 47.93 ± 11.90 years. The Cronbach's α of the FACT-Cog scale was 0.82. Test–retest intraclass correlation coefficient values of the FACT-Cog questionnaire were varied from 0.855 to 0.954. There were found low correlations between the total score of the FACT-Cog and the MMSE (r = 0.26, p = 0.002), and moderate correlations between the EORTC QLQ-CF subscale and the FACT-Cog (r = −0.43; p < 0.001).
Significance of results
It showed the validity and reliability of the Turkish version of the FACT-Cog questionnaire for cancer patients. It may be beneficial to use this questionnaire for the effects of cancer treatment.
Our objective was to quantify the cross-sectional associations between dietary fatty acid (DFA) patterns and cognitive function among Hispanic/Latino adults. This study included data from 8,942 participants of the Hispanic Community Health Study/Study of Latinos, a population-based cohort study (weighted age 56.2 y and proportion female 55.2%). The NCI (National Cancer Institute) method was used to estimate dietary intake from two 24-hr recalls. We derived DFA patterns using principal components analysis with 26 fatty acid and total plant and animal monounsaturated fatty acid (MUFA) input variables. Global cognitive function was calculated as the average z-score of 4 neurocognitive tests. Survey linear regression models included multiple potential confounders such as age, sex, education, depressive symptoms, physical activity, energy intake, and cardiovascular disease. DFA patterns were characterized by consumption of long-chain saturated fatty acids (SFA), animal-based MUFA, and trans fatty acids (Factor 1); short to medium-chain SFA (Factor 2); very-long-chain omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) (Factor 3); very-long-chain SFA and plant-based MUFA and PUFA (Factor 4). Factor 2 was associated with greater scores for global cognitive function (β=0.037 ± 0.012) and the Digit Symbol Substitution (DSS) (β=0.56±0.17), Brief Spanish English Verbal Learning-Sum (B-SEVLT) (β=0.23 ± 0.11), and B-SEVLT-Recall (β=0.11 ± 0.05) tests (P<0.05 for all). Factors 1 (β=0.04 ± 0.01) and 4 (β=0.70 ± 0.18) were associated with the DSS test (P<0.05 for all). Consumption of short to medium-chain SFA may be associated with higher cognitive function among U.S.-residing Hispanic/Latino adults. Prospective studies are necessary to confirm these findings.
Nutrition plays a key role in training for, and competing in, competitive sport, and is essential for reducing risk of injury and illness, recovering and adapting between bouts of activity, and enhancing performance. Consumption of a Mediterranean diet (MedDiet) has been demonstrated to reduce risk of various non-communicable diseases and increase longevity. Following the key principles of a MedDiet could also represent a useful framework for good nutrition in competitive athletes under most circumstances, with potential benefits for health and performance parameters. In this review, we discuss the potential effects of a MedDiet, or individual foods and compounds readily available in this dietary pattern, on oxidative stress and inflammation, injury and illness risk, vascular and cognitive function, and exercise performance in competitive athletes. We also highlight potential modifications which could be made to the MedDiet (whilst otherwise adhering to the key principles of this dietary pattern) in accordance with contemporary sports nutrition practices, to maximise health and performance effects. In addition, we discuss potential directions for future research.
There is emerging evidence linking fruit and vegetable consumption and cognitive function. However, studies focusing on the nutrients underlying this relationship are lacking. We aim to examine the association between plasma nutrients and cognition in a population at risk for cognitive decline with a suboptimal diet. The Mediterranean-DASH Intervention for Neurodegenerative Delay (MIND) trial is a randomized controlled intervention that examines the effects of the MIND diet to prevent cognitive decline. The primary outcome is global cognition. A multivariate linear model was used to investigate the association between blood nutrients and global and/or domain-specific cognition. The model was adjusted for age, sex, education, study site, smoking status, cognitive activities and physical activities. High plasma α-carotene was associated with better global cognition. Participants in the highest tertile of plasma α-carotene had a higher global cognition z score of 0⋅17 when compared with individuals in the lowest tertile (P 0⋅002). Circulating α-carotene levels were also associated with higher semantic memory scores (P for trend 0⋅007). Lutein and zeaxanthin (combined) was positively associated with higher semantic memory scores (P for trend 0⋅009). Our study demonstrated that higher α-carotene levels in blood were associated with higher global cognition scores in a US population at risk for cognitive decline. The higher α-carotene levels in blood reflected greater intakes of fruits, other types of vegetables and lesser intakes of butter and margarine and meat. The higher circulating levels of lutein plus zeaxanthin reflected a dietary pattern with high intakes of fruits, green leafy, other vegetables and cheese, and low consumption of fried foods. Objective nutrient markers in the blood can better characterize dietary intake, which may facilitate the implementation of a tailored dietary intervention for the prevention of cognitive decline.
Dementia is characterized by a decrease in mental functions, while disorders of balance, coordination of movements and gait are gradually added. In recent years there has been a growing interest in the role of exercise as a therapeutic strategy for people with dementia.
The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of different types of exercise and its parameters on cognitive and physical function in patients with dementia after reviewing the relevant literature.
Review of the literature based on the research of original scientific articles published in the electronic databases PubMed / Medline and Google scholar using as keywords the terms dementia, cognitive function, physical function, functionality, aerobic exercise, resistance exercise.
A review in the literature highlights the beneficial effect of exercise on patients with dementia. Aerobic exercise and mixed interventions have been studied more, while resistance interventions have been less studied. All three types of exercise have shown positive effects. The methodology differences of the studies make it difficult to draw definitive conclusions about the optimal intervention in the cognitive and physical function for the optimal result, the type of exercise, the duration, the frequency and the intensity.
Exercise (physical) may help maintain or improve cognitive function and functionality in patients with dementia but additional study is needed to clarify optimal intervention and establish guidelines.
Cognitive function is impaired in depressive disorders. Among several factors implicated in regulation of the cognitive function, metabolic syndrome has been showed have a pivotal role cognitive functioning in healthy controls. However, the role of metabolic syndrome in regulating the cognitive functioning of subjects affected by depressive disorders is little studied.
To investigate the effect of metabolic syndrome in regulation of cognition in unipolar and bipolar depression.
One-hundred-sixty-five people affected by a depressive disorder (unipolar depression, UP; bipolar depression, BP) were enrolled at the Psychiatric and Clinic Psychology Unit of the University of Rome Tor Vergata, Rome, Italy. A group of healthy controls (HC) matched for agender and age was enrolled. The cognitive functions were evaluated with a computerized tool, THINC-it.
UP and BP had lower performances in THINC-it cognitive domains than HC. Metabolic syndrome is a negative, independent predictor of low performance in the THINC-it cognitive domains of people with depressive disorders.
Our findings confirm that metabolic syndrome has a prominent role in determining the cognitive efficiency in depressive disorders, independently by the presence of a unipolar or bipolar depressive disorder. Metabolic syndrome has to be considered a major factor that should be considered in the treatment strategies of cognitive functioning improvement of people affected by depressive disorders.
Children exposed to prenatal maternal psychological distress are at elevated risk for a range of adverse outcomes; however, it remains poorly understood whether postnatal influences can ameliorate impairments related to prenatal distress. The current study evaluated if sensitivematernal care during the first postnatal year could mitigate child cognitive and emotional impairments associated with prenatal psychological distress. Prenatal maternal psychological distress was assessed via self-reports of anxiety, depression, and perceived stress for 136 mothers at five prenatal and four postpartum time points. Quality of maternal care (sensitivity to nondistress, positive regard, and intrusiveness reverse-scored) were assessed during a mother–child play interaction at 6 and 12 months. Child cognitive function and negative emotionality were assessed at 2 years, using The Bayley Scales and the Early Childhood Behavior Questionnaire. Elevated prenatal distress was associated with poorer child cognitive function and elevated negative emotionality. Children exposed to elevated prenatal maternal distress did not, however, display these outcomes if they received high-quality caregiving. Specifically, maternal care moderated the relation between prenatal psychological distress and child cognitive function and negative emotionality. This association remained after consideration of postnatal maternal psychological distress and relevant covariates. Sensitive maternal care was associated with altered offspring developmental trajectories, supporting child resilience following prenatal distress exposure.
Patients with psychiatric disorders often experience cognitive dysfunction, but the precise relationship between cognitive deficits and psychopathology remains unclear. We investigated the relationships between domains of cognitive functioning and psychopathology in a transdiagnostic sample using a data-driven approach.
Cross-sectional network analyses were conducted to investigate the relationships between domains of psychopathology and cognitive functioning and detect clusters in the network. This naturalistic transdiagnostic sample consists of 1016 psychiatric patients who have a variety of psychiatric diagnoses, such as depressive disorders, anxiety disorders, obsessive−compulsive and related disorders, and schizophrenia spectrum and other psychotic disorders. Psychopathology symptoms were assessed using various questionnaires. Core cognitive domains were assessed with a battery of automated tests.
Network analysis detected three clusters that we labelled: general psychopathology, substance use, and cognition. Depressive and anxiety symptoms, verbal memory, and visual attention were the most central nodes in the network. Most associations between cognitive functioning and symptoms were negative, i.e. increased symptom severity was associated with worse cognitive functioning. Cannabis use, (subclinical) psychotic experiences, and anhedonia had the strongest total negative relationships with cognitive variables.
Cognitive functioning and psychopathology are independent but related dimensions, which interact in a transdiagnostic manner. Depression, anxiety, verbal memory, and visual attention are especially relevant in this network and can be considered independent transdiagnostic targets for research and treatment in psychiatry. Moreover, future research on cognitive functioning in psychopathology should take a transdiagnostic approach, focusing on symptom-specific interactions with cognitive domains rather than investigating cognitive functioning within diagnostic categories.
The term intellectually gifted (IG) refers to children of high intelligence, which is classically measured by the intelligence quotient (IQ). Some researchers assume that the cognitive profiles of these children are characterized by both strengths and weaknesses, compared with those of their typically developing (TD) peers of average IQ. The aim of the present systematic review was to verify this assumption, by compiling data from empirical studies of cognitive functions (language, motor skills, visuospatial processing, memory, attention and executive functions, social and emotional cognition) and academic performances.
The literature search yielded 658 articles, 15 of which met the selection criteria taken from the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses model. We undertook a qualitative summary, to highlight any discrepancies between cognitive functions.
IG children exhibited better skills than TD children in a number of domains, including attention, language, mathematics, verbal working memory, shifting, and social problem solving. However, the two groups had comparable skills in visuospatial processing, memory, planning, inhibition, and visual working memory, or facial recognition.
Although IG children may have some strengths, many studies have failed to find differences between this population and their TD peers on many other cognitive measures. Just like any other children, they can display learning disabilities, which can be responsible for academic underachievement. Further studies are needed to better understand this heterogeneity. The present review provides pointers for overcoming methodological problems and opens up new avenues for giftedness research.
Exercise is associated with higher cognitive function and is a promising intervention to reduce the risk of dementia. With advancing age, there are changes in the vasculature that have important clinical implications for brain health and cognition. Primary aging and vascular risk factors are associated with increases in arterial stiffness and pulse pressure, and reductions in peripheral vascular function.
The purpose is to discuss the epidemiological, observational, and mechanistic evidence regarding the link between age-related changes in vascular health and brain health.
We performed a literature review and integrated with our published data.
Epidemiological evidence suggests a link between age-related increases in arterial stiffness and lower cognitive function, which may be mediated by cerebral vascular function, including cerebral vasoreactivity and cerebral pulsatility. Age-associated impairments in central arterial stiffness and peripheral vascular function have been attenuated or reversed through lifestyle behaviors such as exercise. Greater volumes of habitual exercise and higher cardiorespiratory fitness are associated with beneficial effects on both peripheral vascular health and cognition. Yet, the extent to which exercise directly influences cerebral vascular function and brain health, as well as the associated mechanisms remains unclear.
Although there is evidence that exercise positively impacts cerebral vascular function, more research is necessary in humans to optimize experimental protocols and address methodological limitations and physiological considerations. Understanding the impact of exercise on cerebral vascular function is important for understanding the association between exercise and brain health and may inform future intervention studies that seek to improve cognition.
On March 11, 2020, the World Health Organization declared an outbreak of a new viral entity, coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19), to be a worldwide pandemic. The characteristics of this virus, as well as its short- and long-term implications, are not yet well understood. The objective of the current paper was to provide a critical review of the emerging literature on COVID-19 and its implications for neurological, neuropsychiatric, and cognitive functioning.
A critical review of recently published empirical research, case studies, and reviews pertaining to central nervous system (CNS) complications of COVID-19 was conducted by searching PubMed, PubMed Central, Google Scholar, and bioRxiv.
After considering the available literature, areas thought to be most pertinent to clinical and research neuropsychologists, including CNS manifestations, neurologic symptoms/syndromes, neuroimaging, and potential long-term implications of COVID-19 infection, were reviewed.
Once thought to be merely a respiratory virus, the scientific and medical communities have realized COVID-19 to have broader effects on renal, vascular, and neurological body systems. The question of cognitive deficits is not yet well studied, but neuropsychologists will undoubtedly play an important role in the years to come.
Increasing evidence has shown that an active, socially engaged lifestyle in leisure time might protect older adults against the decline of cognitive function. It remains unclear, however, which types of leisure activities are more beneficial to maintain cognitive function, and whether there are gender differences in the association between leisure activities and cognitive function. We used a two-wave of panel data from 1,018 older adults aged 60 and older in rural China to examine the lag effects of different types of leisure activities on cognitive functioning and to identify the gender differences in their impacts on cognition in rural China. Ordinary least-squares regression models showed that high physical activities were associated with better cognitive function. High intensity of cognitive activities and engaging in physical activities have a protective effect on cognitive function among older men rather than older women. Further, we found that cognitive activities had a stronger effect on cognitive function among older men than older women. It is important to consider gender-specific intervention in leisure activities to maintain cognitive function among older adults.
Systemic inflammation has been linked with mood disorder and cognitive impairment. The extent of this relationship remains uncertain, with the effects of serum inflammatory biomarkers compared to genetic predisposition toward inflammation yet to be clearly established.
We investigated the magnitude of associations between C-reactive protein (CRP) measures, lifetime history of bipolar disorder or major depression, and cognitive function (reaction time and visuospatial memory) in 84,268 UK Biobank participants. CRP was measured in serum and a polygenic risk score for CRP was calculated, based on a published genome-wide association study. Multiple regression models adjusted for sociodemographic and clinical confounders.
Increased serum CRP was significantly associated with mood disorder history (Kruskal–Wallis H = 196.06, p < 0.001, η2 = 0.002) but increased polygenic risk for CRP was not (F = 0.668, p = 0.648, η2 < 0.001). Compared to the lowest quintile, the highest serum CRP quintile was significantly associated with both negative and positive differences in cognitive performance (fully adjusted models: reaction time B = −0.030, 95% CI = −0.052, −0.008; visuospatial memory B = 0.066, 95% CI = 0.042, 0.089). More severe mood disorder categories were significantly associated with worse cognitive performance and this was not moderated by serum or genetic CRP level.
In this large cohort study, we found that measured inflammation was associated with mood disorder history, but genetic predisposition to inflammation was not. The association between mood disorder and worse cognitive performance was very small and did not vary by CRP level. The inconsistent relationship between CRP measures and cognitive performance warrants further study.
Social isolation and loneliness have each been associated with cognitive decline, but most previous research is limited to Western populations. This study examined the relationships of social isolation and loneliness on cognitive function among Chinese older adults.
This study used two waves of data (2011 and 2015) from the China Health and Retirement Longitudinal Study and analyses were restricted to those respondents aged 50 and older. Social isolation, loneliness, and cognitive function were measured at baseline. Follow-up measures on cognitive function were obtained for 7761 participants (mean age = 60.97, s.d. = 7.31; male, 50.8%). Lagged dependent variable models adjusted for confounding factors were used to evaluate the association between baseline isolation, loneliness, and cognitive function at follow-up.
Loneliness was significantly associated with the cognitive decline at follow-up (episodic memory: β = −0.03, p < 0.01; mental status: β = −0.03, p < 0.01) in the partially adjusted models. These associations became insignificant after additional confounding variables (chronic diseases, health behaviors, disabilities, and depressive symptoms) were taken into account (all p > 0.05). By contrast, social isolation was significantly associated with decreases in all cognitive function measures at follow-up (episodic memory: β = −0.05, p < 0.001; mental status: β = −0.03, p < 0.01) even after controlling for loneliness and all confounding variables.
Social isolation is associated with cognitive decline in Chinese older adults, and the relationships are independent of loneliness. These findings expand our knowledge about the links between social relationships and the cognitive function in non-Western populations.
One’s personal social network constitutes a contextual framing factor for late-life cognitive function. This study examined the association between network type at baseline and changes in three cognitive measures: immediate recall, delayed recall, and fluency, two years hence, among Europeans aged 50 and older.
Data were taken from Waves four and five of the Survey of Health, Ageing, and Retirement in Europe of adults aged 50 and above (N = 50,071).
The latent class analysis was applied to a set of criterion variables. The procedure yielded five distinct network types: multi-tie (6%), family-rich (23%), close-family (49%), family-poor (12%), and friend-enhanced (10%). The network types were then regressed on the cognition measures at follow-up, controlling for the respective baseline cognition scores, as well as for age, gender, education, self-rated health, mobility difficulty, and country.
Respondents in family-poor network types had poorer cognition scores at follow-up, compared to those in the modal close-family network, while those in multi-tie networks had consistently better scores. The family-rich network and the friend-enhanced network also had a somewhat better cognitive function.
Having varied sources of network ties, e.g. friendship ties and/or several types of family relationships, is beneficial to the cognitive health of older adults over time. Networks based mainly on ties with relatives other than spouse and children, on the other hand, have poorer cognitive outcomes. Older people in this latter group face an increased risk for cognitive decline and should receive assistance in enhancing their interpersonal environments.
We have often observed dementia symptoms or severe neurocognitive decline in the long-term course of schizophrenia. While there are epidemiological reports that patients with schizophrenia are at an increased risk of developing dementia, there are also neuropathological reports that the prevalence of Alzheimer’s disease (AD) in schizophrenia is similar to that in normal controls. It is difficult to distinguish, based solely on the clinical symptoms, whether the remarkable dementia symptoms and cognitive decline seen in elderly schizophrenia are due to the course of the disease itself or a concomitant neurocognitive disease. Neuropathological observation is needed for discrimination.
We conducted a neuropathological search on three cases of schizophrenia that developed cognitive decline or dementia symptoms after a long illness course of schizophrenia. The clinical symptoms of total disease course were confirmed retrospectively in the medical record. We have evaluated neuropathological diagnosis based on not only Hematoxylin–Eosin and Klüver–Barrera staining specimens but also immunohistochemical stained specimens including tau, β-amyloid, pTDP-43 and α-synuclein protein throughout clinicopathological conference with multiple neuropathologists and psychiatrists.
The three cases showed no significant pathological findings or preclinical degenerative findings, and poor findings consistent with symptoms of dementia were noted.
Although the biological background of dementia symptoms in elderly schizophrenic patients is still unclear, regarding the brain capacity/cognitive reserve ability, preclinical neurodegeneration changes in combination with certain brain vulnerabilities due to schizophrenia itself are thought to induce dementia syndrome and severe cognitive decline.
The global growing rates of cognitive decline and dementia, together with the absence of curative therapies for these conditions, support the interest in researching potential primary prevention interventions, with particular focus on dietary habits. The aim was to assess the association between polyphenol intake and 6-year change in cognitive function in the ‘Seguimiento Universidad de Navarra’ (SUN) Project, a Spanish prospective cohort study. Changes (final – initial) in cognitive function were evaluated in a subsample of 806 participants (mean age 66 (sd 5) years, 69·7 % male) of the SUN Project using the validated Spanish Telephone Interview for Cognitive Status-modified score. Polyphenol intake was derived from a validated semi-quantitative FFQ and matching food composition data from the Phenol-Explorer database. Multivariable linear regression models were used to evaluate the association between total polyphenol intake, polyphenol subclasses and cognitive changes. No significant association between total polyphenol intake and changes in cognitive function was found. However, a higher intake of lignans (βQuintile (Q) 5 v. Q1 0·81; 95 % CI 0·12, 1·51; Ptrend = 0·020) and stilbenes (βQ5 v. Q1 0·82; 95 % CI 0·15, 1·49; Ptrend = 0·028) was associated with more favourable changes in cognitive function over time, particularly with respect to immediate memory and language domains. Olive oil and nuts were the major sources of variability in lignan intake, and wine in stilbene intake. The results suggest that lignan and stilbene intake was associated with improvements in cognitive function.
role of global cognition in the association between Anemia and depression.
We examined the longitudinal relationships between hemoglobin concentrations or Anemia and depression and whether baseline cognitive function modifies these longitudinal relationships over 4 years of follow-up.
A total of 1608 community-dwelling older adults from the International Mobility in Aging Study (IMIAS) aged 65 to 74 years were recruited in Natal (Brazil), Manizales (Colombia), Kingston (Ontario, Canada), and Saint-Hyacinthe (Quebec, Canada). The study outcome was depression, defined by a score of 16 or over in the Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression Scale (CES-D). Longitudinal associations over four years follow-up were examined using generalized estimating equations. Models reported were either unadjusted and adjusted for research sites, alcohol drinking status, body mass index, chronic conditions, activities of daily life disabilities, and polypharmacy.
Longuitinal relationships suggested an evidence of multiplicative interaction by baseline global cognition in which 1g/dL increase in hemoglobin concentrations there was a significant reduction in the risk of depression with a stronger effect among participants with good cognitive function (Odds Ratio (OR)=0.85, 95% CI: 0.78-0.92) compared to those with poor cognition (OR=0.89, 95% CI: 0.80-0.97). Anemia and poor cognition at baseline were associated with an increased risk of depression over four years of follow-up (OR=5.80, 95% CI: 1.84-18.23). Global cognition was also an effect modifier of the longitudinal association between the severity of Anemia and depression.
In international samples of older adults, hemoglobin concentrations, as well as the severity of Anemia, were independent risk factors for depression, and these associations differed by global cognitive function.
Identifying effective treatments is a critical issue for Alzheimer’s dementia (AD). The pathological amyloid deposits of AD result in disruption of the balance between long-term potentiation (LTP) and long-term depression (LTD) of neuronal cells and synaptic plasticity. Brain stimulation in dementia research, especially with relatively safe tDCS, has been taken seriously recently. In theory, tDCS affects long-term synaptic plasticity through LTP and LTD, thereby improving cognitive ability. Recently, an increasing number of studies have been conducted to evaluate the efficacy of tDCS in AD and concluded a positive therapeutic effect. Currently, there are no studies of tDCS for AD in Taiwan. In this study, we investigate the effects of tDCS in AD.
Using a double-blind, randomized and sham- controlled trial design, Sixteen AD aged 55-90 years (8 active, mean age 73.88 and 8 sham, mean age 74.75) were included in the study. AD diagnostics is according to DSM-5 criteria. The CDR ratings of AD participants ranged from 0.5 to 2. All subjects completed ten consecutive daily sessions in which they received either an active or a sham tDCS over the left dorsal lateral prefrontal cortex (anodal) and a cathodal electrode on the right supraorbital area. In each session, we applied a current intensity of 2 mA and an electrode size of 35 cm2 for 30 min in the active group. All subjects received a series of neuropsychological tests, which included CDR, MMSE, CASI and WCST, before and after these treatment sessions on the first day and 4 weeks later. Chi- square test, Wilcoxon signed ranks test and Mann-Whitney U test were used to assess the differences in participant demographic characteristics and to compare the differences among groups.
The active group showed significant improvement in total correct item, Conceptual level Responses (reflecting insight into the correct sorting principles), Categories Completed (reflecting overall success), and Trials to complete first categories (reflecting initial conceptual ability) of WCST 4 weeks later after the final stimulation. There were no statistically significant differences between before and after the 10-session course for the sham group.
tDCS stimulation improves cognitive operation and Conceptual Ability of AD.
Supported by (1) medical research grants CMRPG3C0041/42 from Chang Gung Memorial Hospital and NRRPG2H0031 from Ministry of Science and Technology, Taiwan to Chemin Lin (2) NMRPG3G6031/32 from Ministry of Science and Technology, Taiwan to Shwu-Hua, Lee (3) the KKHo International Charitable Foundation to Tatia Lee.
Suicide rate tends to peak in old age, and major depression is the most salient risk factor for late-life suicide. However, few studies have focused on the neuroscientific facet of suicide in the context of late-life depression (LLD).
We recruited 114 participants of LLD (28 with history of suicide attempt and 86 without) and 47 elderly controls. They received MRI scanning and behavioral assessment. White matter hyperintensity (WMH) was quantified by an automated segmentation algorithm and graph theoretical analysis was applied to resting-state fMRI. We used ANCOVA to compare group difference in WMH loading and multivariate generalized linear model to compare global and local topological parameters in fMRI signals, controlling for demographics. Partial correlation was conducted between imaging parameters and behavioral data in group of suicide attempters.
We found significant higher WMH in suicide attempters than those of LLD without suicide attempts and elderly controls (F =7.091; p = 0.001). Suicide attempters also had increased betweenness centrality (BC) in right superior occipital gyrus (SOG) (Bonferroni corrected), right precuneus (False positive corrected) and right superior temporal gyrus (uncorrected) and decreased BC in left hippocampus (uncorrected). In suicide attempters, higher BC in right SOG correlated with higher WMH, higher depression severity, higher illness awareness and insight, and lower cognitive function (digit backward), while higher BC in right precuneus correlated with higher decrease awareness and insight and higher cognitive function (digit backward).
Resonating with the vascular hypothesis in LLD, higher WMH was found in those having history of suicide attempts. However, the re-organized brain topology changes are related with divergent cognitive function and convergent heightened disease insight.