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Regional cortical hypoperfusion and atrophy correlate with striatal dopaminergic loss in Parkinson’s disease: a study using arterial spin labeling MR perfusion

Neuroradiology. 2022 Nov 14. doi: 10.1007/s00234-022-03085-7. Online ahead of print.


PURPOSE: To investigate the relationship of the striatal dopamine transporter density to changes in the gray matter (GM) volume and cerebral perfusion in patients with Parkinson’s disease (PD).

METHODS: We evaluated the regional cerebral blood flow (CBF) and GM volume, concurrently measured using arterial spin labeling and T1-weighted magnetic resonance imaging, respectively, as well as the striatal specific binding ratio (SBR) in 123I-N-ω-fluoropropyl-2β-carboxymethoxy-3β-(4-iodophenyl)nortropane (123I-FP-CIT) single-photon emission computed tomography in 30 non-demented patients with PD (15 men and 15 women; mean age, 67.2 ± 8.8 years; mean Hoehn-Yahr stage, 2.2 ± 0.9). Voxel-wise regression analyses using statistical parametric mapping (SPM) were performed to explore the brain regions that showed correlations of the striatal SBR to the GM volume and CBF, respectively, with a height threshold of p < 0.0005 at the voxel level and p < 0.05 family-wise error-corrected at the cluster level.

RESULTS: SPM analysis showed a significant positive correlation between the SBR and GM volume in the inferior frontal gyrus (IFG). Whereas, a positive correlation between the SBR and CBF was widely found in the frontotemporal and parietotemporal regions, including the IFG. Notably, the opercular part of the IFG showed significant correlations in both SPM analyses of the GM volume (r2 = 0.90, p < 0.0001) and CBF (r2 = 0.88, p < 0.0001).

CONCLUSION: The voxel-wise analyses revealed the brain regions, mainly the IFG, that showed hypoperfusion and atrophy related to dopaminergic loss, which suggests that the progression of dopaminergic neurodegeneration leads to regional cortical dysfunction in PD.

PMID:36376524 | DOI:10.1007/s00234-022-03085-7

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