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San Fedele Superiore, Italy

Ferrarini L.,Leiden University | Van Lew B.,Leiden University | Reiber J.H.C.,Leiden University | Gandin C.,National Center on Epidemiology | And 6 more authors.
International Psychogeriatrics | Year: 2014

Background: Clinical studies have shown that hippocampal atrophy is present before dementia in people with memory deficits and can predict dementia development. The question remains whether this association holds in the general population. This is of interest for the possible use of hippocampal atrophy to screen population for preventive interventions. The aim of this study was to assess hippocampal volume and shape abnormalities in elderly adults with memory deficits in a cross-sectional population-based study. Methods: We included individuals participating in the Italian Project on the Epidemiology of Alzheimer Disease (IPREA) study: 75 cognitively normal individuals (HC), 31 individuals with memory deficits (MEM), and 31 individuals with memory deficits not otherwise specified (MEMnos). Hippocampal volumes and shape were extracted through manual tracing and the growing and adaptive meshes (GAMEs) shape-modeling algorithm. We investigated between-group differences in hippocampal volume and shape, and correlations with memory deficits. Results: In MEM participants, hippocampal volumes were significantly smaller than in HC and were mildly associated with worse memory scores. Memory-Associated shape changes mapped to the anterior hippocampus. Shape-based analysis detected no significant difference between MEM and HC, while MEMnos showed shape changes in the posterior hippocampus compared with HC and MEM groups. Conclusions: These findings support the discriminant validity of hippocampal volumetry as a biomarker of memory impairment in the general population. The detection of shape changes in MEMnos but not in MEM participants suggests that shape-based biomarkers might lack sensitivity to detect Alzheimer's-like pathology in the general population. Copyright © International Psychogeriatric Association 2014. Source

Scafato E.,National Center on Epidemiology | Gandin C.,National Center on Epidemiology | Galluzzo L.,National Center on Epidemiology | Ghirini S.,National Center on Epidemiology | And 40 more authors.
Aging Clinical and Experimental Research | Year: 2010

Background and aims: The prevalence of the preclinical phase of dementia varies greatly, according to the diagnostic criteria and assessment procedures applied. The purpose of this study was to estimate the prevalence of cognitive impairment according to the Aging-Associated Cognitive Decline (AACD) diagnostic criteria in an Italian elderly population. Methods: In a multicenter community-based prospective study, 4785 Italian subjects aged 65-84 years, randomly selected from the registries of 12 Italian municipalities, were assessed by personal and informant interviews, physical and neurological examinations and an extensive neuropsychological battery. Results: Of these older subjects, 274 (9.2%) fulfilled all the AACD criteria, whereas 561 (18.8%) fulfilled only 3 of them (AACD-3). When the two groups diagnosed according to AACD criteria (AACD and AACD-3) were merged, the prevalence was 28.0% (28.3% for men, 27.6% for women). Two other groups of subjects were also identified: a) Subjects with Qbjective evidence of Cognitive Decline without cognitive complaints (OCD), 508 (17.0%), i.e., subjects with documented neuropsychological deficits, although neither subjects nor informants reported cognitive complaints; and b) Subjects with Cognitive Complaints without objective demonstrable cognitive deficits (CC), 44 (1.5%), i.e., subjects and/or informants reported cognitive complaints without evidence of neuropsychological deficits. Thus, taking into account the additional OCD group, a total of 1343 persons with cognitive impairment without dementia (45.0%) was identified. Conclusions: On the basis of our results, we estimate that 45% of our population-based Italian sample aged 65-84 years had some kind of cognitive deficits without dementia. ©2010, Editrice Kurtis. Source

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