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Erdelyi-Botor S.,University of Pécs | Kamson D.O.,University of Pécs | Kovacs N.,University of Pécs | Perlaki G.,University of Pécs | And 12 more authors.
Headache | Year: 2015

Objective/Background The aim of this longitudinal study was to investigate changes of migraine-related brain white matter hyperintensities 3 years after an initial study. Baseline quantitative magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) studies of migraine patients with hemispheric white matter hyperintensities performed in 2009 demonstrated signs of tissue damage within the hyperintensities. The hyperintensities appeared most frequently in the deep white matter of the frontal lobe with a similar average hyperintensity size in all hemispheric lobes. Since in this patient group the repeated migraine attacks were the only known risk factors for the development of white matter hyperintensities, the remeasurements of migraineurs after a 3-year long follow-up may show changes in the status of these structural abnormalities as the effects of the repeated headaches. Methods The same patient group was reinvestigated in 2012 using the same MRI scanner and acquisition protocol. MR measurements were performed on a 3.0-Tesla clinical MRI scanner. Beyond the routine T1-, T2-weighted, and fluid-attenuated inversion recovery imaging, diffusion and perfusion-weighted imaging, proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy, and T1 and T2 relaxation time measurements were also performed. Findings of the baseline and follow-up studies were compared with each other. Results The follow-up proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy studies of white matter hyperintensities showed significantly decreased N-acetyl-aspartate (median values 8.133 vs 7.153 mmol/L, P = .009) and creatine/phosphocreatine (median values 4.970 vs 4.641 mmol/L, P = .015) concentrations compared to the baseline, indicating a more severe axonal loss and glial hypocellularity with decreased intracellular energy production. The diffusion values, the T1 and T2 relaxation times, and the cerebral blood flow and volume measurements presented only mild changes between the studies. The number (median values 21 vs 25, P < .001) and volume (median values 0.896 vs 1.140 mL, P < .001) of hyperintensities were significantly higher in the follow-up study. No changes were found in the hemispheric and lobar distribution of hyperintensities. An increase in the hyperintensity size of preexisting lesions was much more common than a decrease (median values 14 vs 5, P = .004). A higher number of newly developed hyperintensities were detected than disappeared ones (130 vs 22), and most of them were small (<.034 mL). Small white matter hyperintensities in patients with a low migraine attack frequency had a higher chance to disappear than large white matter hyperintensities or white matter hyperintensities in patients with a high attack frequency (coefficient: -0.517, P = .034). Conclusions This longitudinal MRI study found clinically silent brain white matter hyperintensities to be predominantly progressive in nature. The absence of a control group precludes definitive conclusions about the nature of these changes or if their degree is beyond normal aging. © 2014 American Headache Society.

PubMed | Pecs Medical School and MTA PTE Clinical Neuroscience MR Research Group
Type: | Journal: Neuroscience letters | Year: 2016

Susceptibility weighted imaging (SWI) is a very sensitive tool for the detection of microbleeds in traumatic brain injury (TBI). The number and extent of such traumatic microbleeds (TMBs) have been shown to correlate with the severity of the injury and the clinical outcome. However, the acute dynamics of TMBs have not been revealed so far. Since TBI is known to constitute dynamic pathological processes, we hypothesized that TMBs are not constant in their appearance, but may progress acutely after injury.We present here five closed moderate/severe (Glasgow coma scale13) TBI patients who underwent SWI very early (average=23.4 h), and once again a week (average=185.8 h) after the injury. The TMBs were mapped at both time points by a conventional radiological approach and their numbers and volumes were measured with manual tracing tools by two observers. TMB counts and extents were compared between time points.TMBs were detected in four patients, three of them displaying an apparent TMB change. In these patients, TMB confluence and apparent growth were detected in the corpus callosum, coronal radiation or subcortical white matter, while unchanged TMBs were also present. These changes caused a decrease in the TMB count associated with an increase in the overall TMB volume over time.We have found a compelling evidence that diffuse axonal injury-related microbleed development is not limited strictly to the moment of injury: the TMBs might expand in the acute phase of TBI. The timing of SWI acquisition may be relevant for optimizing the prognostic utility of this imaging biomarker.

PubMed | University of Pécs, Diagnostic Center and MTA PTE Clinical Neuroscience MR Research Group
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Brain imaging and behavior | Year: 2015

Neuroimaging findings suggest that excessive Internet use shows functional and structural brain changes similar to substance addiction. Even though it is still under debate whether there are gender differences in case of problematic use, previous studies by-passed this question by focusing on males only or by using gender matched approach without controlling for potential gender effects. We designed our study to find out whether there are structural correlates in the brain reward system of problematic Internet use in habitual Internet user females. T1-weighted Magnetic Resonance (MR) images were collected in 82 healthy habitual Internet user females. Structural brain measures were investigated using both automated MR volumetry and voxel based morphometry (VBM). Self-reported measures of problematic Internet use and hours spent online were also assessed. According to MR volumetry, problematic Internet use was associated with increased grey matter volume of bilateral putamen and right nucleus accumbens while decreased grey matter volume of orbitofrontal cortex (OFC). Similarly, VBM analysis revealed a significant negative association between the absolute amount of grey matter OFC and problematic Internet use. Our findings suggest structural brain alterations in the reward system usually related to addictions are present in problematic Internet use.

Lo Pizzo M.,University of Palermo | Schiera G.,University of Palermo | Di Liegro I.,University of Palermo | Di Liegro C.M.,University of Palermo | And 6 more authors.
Neurological Sciences | Year: 2013

Distribution of aquaporin-4 (AQP4) was studied by western analysis and immunofluorescence in rat astrocytes exposed to either hypothermic (30 C) or hyperosmolar (0.45 M sucrose) stress, and in the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) of patients who suffered traumatic brain injury (TBI). CSF was obtained from 5 healthy subjects and from 20 patients suffering from severe TBI. CSF samples were taken at admission and on days 3 and 5-7. Here we report that, in response to both hypothermia and hyperosmolar stress, AQP4 was markedly reduced in cultured astrocytes. We also found that AQP4 significantly increased in patients with severe brain injury in respect to healthy subjects (P < 0.002). AQP4 in CSF remained unchanged in patients with elevated intracranial pressure (ICP), whereas there was a clear tendency to further increase in those patients whose ICP could be controlled within the normal range. We conclude that AQP4 levels in CSF are elevated after TBI and it might serve as a useful biochemical marker to assess brain water metabolism in clinical settings. © 2012 Springer-Verlag Italia.

Toth A.,University of Pécs | Kovacs N.,University of Pécs | Perlaki G.,University of Pécs | Perlaki G.,Pecs Diagnostic Center | And 18 more authors.
Journal of Neurotrauma | Year: 2013

Advanced magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) methods were shown to be able to detect the subtle structural consequences of mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI). The objective of this study was to investigate the acute structural alterations and recovery after mTBI, using diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) to reveal axonal pathology, volumetric analysis, and susceptibility weighted imaging (SWI) to detect microhemorrhage. Fourteen patients with mTBI who had computed tomography with negative results underwent MRI within 3 days and 1 month after injury. High resolution T1-weighted imaging, DTI, and SWI, were performed at both time points. A control group of 14 matched volunteers were also examined following the same imaging protocol and time interval. Tract-Based Spatial Statistics (TBSS) were performed on DTI data to reveal group differences. T1-weighted images were fed into Freesurfer volumetric analysis. TBSS showed fractional anisotropy (FA) to be significantly (corrected p<0.05) lower, and mean diffusivity (MD) to be higher in the mTBI group in several white matter tracts (FA=40,737; MD=39,078 voxels) compared with controls at 72 hours after injury and still 1month later for FA. Longitudinal analysis revealed significant change (i.e., normalization) of FA and MD over 1 month dominantly in the left hemisphere (FA=3408; MD=7450 voxels). A significant (p<0.05) decrease in cortical volumes (mean 1%) and increase in ventricular volumes (mean 3.4%) appeared at 1 month after injury in the mTBI group. SWI did not reveal microhemorrhage in our patients. Our findings present dynamic micro-and macrostructural changes occurring in the acute to sub-acute phase in mTBI, in very mildly injured patients lacking microhemorrhage detectable by SWI. These results underscore the importance of strictly defined image acquisition time points when performing MRI studies on patients with mTBI. © 2013, Mary Ann Liebert, Inc.

PubMed | University of Pécs, Pecs Diagnostic Center, Mediso Medical Imaging Systems and MTA PTE Clinical Neuroscience MR Research Group
Type: | Journal: Parkinsonism & related disorders | Year: 2016

Dopamine transporter imaging with (123)I-FP-CIT single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) is helpful for the differential diagnosis between Parkinsonian syndrome (PS) and essential tremor (ET). Although visual assessment and time-consuming manual evaluation techniques are readily available, a fully objective and automated dopamine transporter quantification technique is always preferable, at least in research and follow-up investigations. Our aim was to develop a novel automated magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)-based evaluation technique of dopamine transporter SPECT images and to compare its diagnostic accuracy with those of the gold-standard visual grading and manual dopamine transporter binding quantification methods.(123)I-FP-CIT SPECT and MRI sessions were conducted in 33 patients with PS (15 men; mean age: 60.39.7 years) and 15 patients with ET (8 men; mean age: 54.716.3 years). Striatal dopamine transporter binding was visually classified by 2 independent experts as normal or abnormal grade I, II and III. Caudal and putaminal specific uptake ratios were calculated by both automated MRI-based and manual evaluation techniques.We found almost perfect agreement (=0.829) between the visual scores by the 2 observers. The automated method showed strong correlation with the visual and manual evaluation techniques and its diagnostic accuracy (sensitivity=97.0%; specificity=93.3%) was also comparable to these methods. The automatically determined uptake parameters showed negative correlation with the clinical severity of parkinsonism. Based on ordinal regression modelling, the automated MRI-based method could reliably determine the visual grading scores.The novel MRI-based evaluation of (123)I-FP-CIT SPECT images is useful for the differentiation of PS from ET.

PubMed | University of Pécs, Pecs Diagnostic Center, National Institute of Clinical Neurosciences and MTA PTE Clinical Neuroscience MR Research Group
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Movement disorders : official journal of the Movement Disorder Society | Year: 2015

The pathophysiology of cervical dystonia is poorly understood. Increased brain iron deposition has been described in different movement disorders. Our aim was to investigate brain iron content in patients with cervical dystonia, using R2* relaxation rate, a validated MRI marker of brain iron level.Twelve female patients with primary focal cervical dystonia (mean age: 45.48.0 years) and 12 age-matched healthy female subjects (mean age: 45.08.0 years) underwent 3T MRI to obtain regional R2* relaxation rates of the thalamus, caudate nucleus, putamen, and globus pallidus (GP). Regions of interest were delineated automatically on T1-weighted MRIs.R2* values in the putamen were positively correlated with age. Patients with cervical dystonia showed elevated R2* values in the GP.This pilot study provides the first quantitative support for increased brain iron deposition in cervical dystonia. Further studies are needed to explore the implications of this finding.

PubMed | University of Pécs, Pecs Diagnostic Center and MTA PTE Clinical Neuroscience MR Research Group
Type: | Journal: Neuroscience letters | Year: 2014

Previous findings on normal sexual dimorphism in hippocampal volume have not always been consistent. This study investigated gender differences in hippocampal volume using different head-size correction strategies. T1-weighted MR images were collected in 99 healthy, Caucasian, university students (66 female subjects; mean age: 23.1 2.3, range: 19-31 years). Sexual dimorphism in hippocampus was investigated by automated MRI volumetry and voxel-based morphometry (VBM) using both general linear model (GLM) and proportion head-size correction strategies. Absolute hippocampal volumes were larger in men than women. After adjusting for head-size, the proportion method indicated larger hippocampi in women than men, while no gender differences were found using the GLM approach. Investigating absolute hippocampal volumes in 15 head-size matched pairs of males and females indicated no gender differences. We suggest that there is no sexual dimorphism in hippocampal size and the apparent gender differences found by the proportion method may have more to do with head-size than with sex. The GLM and proportion head-size correction strategies are not interchangeable and may yield different results. The importance of the present findings is mostly related to scientific reproducibility across MRI volumetry or VBM studies.

PubMed | University of Pécs and MTA PTE Clinical Neuroscience MR Research Group
Type: Journal Article | Journal: Journal of Parkinson's disease | Year: 2015

Sleep problems are among the most common non-motor symptoms of Parkinsons disease (PD). The PD Sleep Scale 2nd version (PDSS-2) improved the original PDSS by adding more items on different aspects of sleep problems, making it a more robust tool to evaluate the severity of sleep disturbances. However, previous studies on deep brain stimulation (DBS) have not used the PDSS-2.To determine if the PDSS-2 could detect improvement reliably in sleep problems after bilateral subthalamic nucleus DBS for PD.In this prospective study, 25 consecutive patients undergoing DBS implantation were enrolled. Patients were examined twice: 1 week prior to the DBS implantation (baseline) and 12 months postoperatively. Severity of PD symptoms were assessed by the Movement Disorders Society Unified PD Rating Scale (MDS-UPDRS) and the Non-Motor Symptoms Scale (NMSS). Presence and severity of sleep disturbances were specifically measured by PDSS-2.Total score of MDS-UPDRS improved from 81 (median, interquartile-range: 63-103) to 55 points (median, IQR: 46-75, p< 0.001). Health-related quality of life, measured by PDQ-39, also improved from 29 (IQR: 18-40) to 15 (IQR: 9-28) points (p=0.002). Most domains of NMSS also improved. At baseline 13 patients reported sleep problems, but 1 year after DBS implantation only 3 did (p=0.012). Although only 6 out of 15 items showed a significant decrease after DBS implantation, the total score of PDSS-2 decreased from 24 (IQR: 17-32) to 10 (IQR: 7-18) points (P< 0.001).Based on our results, PDSS-2 can detect improvements in sleep quality reliably after DBS implantation.

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