Research Paper Volume 13, Issue 8 pp 10973—10988
Association between white matter hyperintensity load and grey matter atrophy in mild cognitive impairment is not unidirectional
- 1 National Neuroscience Institute, Singapore, Singapore
- 2 Duke-NUS Medical School, Singapore, Singapore
- 3 Lee Kong Chian-Nanyang Technological University, Singapore, Singapore
Received: February 8, 2021 Accepted: April 5, 2021 Published: April 16, 2021https://doi.org/10.18632/aging.202977
How to Cite
Copyright: © 2021 Vipin et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
Neuroimaging measures of Alzheimer’s disease (AD) include grey matter volume (GMV) alterations in the Default Mode Network (DMN) and Executive Control Network (ECN). Small-vessel cerebrovascular disease, often visualised as white matter hyperintensities (WMH) on MRI, is often seen in AD. However, the relationship between WMH load and GMV needs further examination. We examined the load-dependent influence of WMH on GMV and cognition in 183 subjects. T1-MRI data from 93 Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI) and 90 cognitively normal subjects were studied and WMH load was categorized into low, medium and high terciles. We examined how differing loads of WMH related to whole-brain voxel-wise and regional DMN and ECN GMV. We further investigated how regional GMV moderated the relationship between WMH and cognition. We found differential load-dependent effects of WMH burden on voxel-wise and regional atrophy in only MCI. At high load, as expected WMH negatively related to both ECN and DMN GMV, however at low load, WMH positively related to ECN GMV. Additionally, negative associations between WMH and memory and executive function were moderated by regional GMV. Our results demonstrate non-unidirectional relationships between WMH load, GMV and cognition in MCI.