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Hippocampal and amygdalar volume changes in elderly patients with Alzheimer's disease and schizophrenia

Prestia, Annapaola
Galluzzi, Samantha
Cavedo, Enrica
Adorni, Andrea
Soricelli, Andrea
Bonetti, Matteo
Geroldi, Cristina
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Published in Psychiatry Research. 2011, vol. 192, no. 2, p. 77-83
Abstract Patients with Alzheimer's disease (AD) and schizophrenia display cognitive, behavioural disturbances and morphological abnormalities. Although these latter reflect progressive neurodegeneration in AD, their significance in schizophrenia is still unclear. We explored the patterns of hippocampal and amygdalar atrophy in those patients and their associations with clinical parameters. Structural magnetic resonance imaging was performed in 20 elderly schizophrenia patients, 20 AD and 19 healthy older controls. Hippocampal and amygdalar volumes were obtained by manual segmentation with a standardized protocol and compared among groups. In both schizophrenia and AD patients, left hippocampal and amygdalar volumes were significantly smaller. The hippocampus/amygdala ratio was significantly lower in schizophrenia compared to both AD cases [2.4 bilaterally, 95% C.I. 2.2 to 2.7] and healthy controls bilaterally [2.5, 95% C.I. 2.3 to 2.9 in left and 2.7, 95% C.I. 2.4 to 3.1 in right hemisphere]. In schizophrenia patients, a significant positive correlation was found between age at disease onset and the right hippocampus/amygdala volume ratio (Spearman rho=0.56). Negative symptoms correlated with higher right/left amygdala volume ratio (Spearman's rho=0.43). Our data show that unlike AD, the hippocampus/amygdala ratio is abnormally low and correlates with the age at onset in schizophrenia, being a neurodevelopmental signature of the disease.
Keywords AgedAged, 80 and overAlzheimer Disease/complications/pathologyAmygdala/pathologyChi-Square DistributionCognition Disorders/diagnosis/etiologyExecutive Function/physiologyFemaleFunctional LateralityGeriatric AssessmentHippocampus/pathologyHumansLanguageMagnetic Resonance ImagingMaleMemory/physiologyMiddle AgedNeuropsychological TestsPsychiatric Status Rating ScalesSchizophrenia/complications/pathology
PMID: 21458960
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Research group Groupe Giannakopoulos Panteleimon (psychiatrie générale) (201)
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PRESTIA, Annapaola et al. Hippocampal and amygdalar volume changes in elderly patients with Alzheimer's disease and schizophrenia. In: Psychiatry Research, 2011, vol. 192, n° 2, p. 77-83. doi: 10.1016/j.pscychresns.2010.12.015 https://archive-ouverte.unige.ch/unige:23972

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Deposited on : 2012-11-13

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