Expanding the role of education in frontotemporal dementia: a functional dynamic connectivity (the chronnectome) study

Enrico Premi, Viviana Cristillo, Stefano Gazzina, Alberto Benussi, Antonella Alberici, Maria Sofia Cotelli, Vince D. Calhoun, Armin Iraji, Mauro Magoni, Maria Cotelli, Anna Micheli, Roberto Gasparotti, Alessandro Padovani, Barbara Borroni

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


In the present study, we aim at investigating whether education modulates dynamical properties of time-varying whole-brain network connectivity (the chronnectome) in frontotemporal dementia (FTD) at a given level of symptom severity. Dynamic connectivity parameters were evaluated in 128 patients with FTD using independent component analysis, sliding-time window correlation, and k-means approach to resting state–magnetic resonance imaging data. We evaluated the relationship between education, a proxy measure of cognitive reserve, and 4 indexes of metastate dynamic connectivity: (1) the number of distinct metastates a patient passes through, (2) the number of switches from one metastate to another, (3) the span of the realized metastates, and (4) the total distance traveled in the state space. We found a significant inverse correlation between years of education and the 4 indexes of metastate dynamic fluidity (all p-values ≤ 0.03, false discovery rate–corrected). This study suggests that patients with FTD with higher education but comparable clinical severity show more global functional brain impairment, suggesting that patients with higher cognitive reserve can cope with more global brain fluidity reduction.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)35-43
Number of pages9
JournalNeurobiology of aging
StatePublished - Sep 2020


  • Chronnectome
  • Cognitive reserve
  • Education
  • Frontotemporal
  • MRI

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology
  • Aging
  • General Neuroscience
  • Developmental Biology


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