Quality and Quantity of Diffuse and Focal White Matter Disease and Cognitive Disability of Patients with Multiple Sclerosis

Giuseppe Bomboi, Vasiliki N. Ikonomidou, Stefano Pellegrini, Susan K. Stern, Antonio Gallo, Sungyoung Auh, Iordanis E. Evangelou, Jhalak Agarwal, Clelia Pellicano, Joan M. Ohayon, Fredric K. Cantor, Mary Ehrmantraut, Henry F. Mcfarland, Robert L. Kane, Francesca Bagnato

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: Using high-field magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), we investigated the relationships between white matter (WM) lesion volume (LV), normal-appearing WM (NAWM) normalized volume, WM-lesion and NAWM magnetization transfer ratios (MTRs), brain parenchyma fraction (BPF), and cognitive impairment (CI) in multiple sclerosis (MS). METHODS: Twenty-four patients and 24 healthy volunteers (age, sex, and years of education-matched) underwent a 3.0 Tesla (3T) scan and evaluation of depression, fatigue, and CI using the Minimal Assessment of Cognitive Function in MS (MACFIMS) battery. RESULTS: In this clinically relatively well-preserved cohort of patients (median score on the Expanded Disability Status Scale = 1.5), CI was detected on Symbol Digit Modalities Test (SDMT), California Verbal Learning Test-II (CVLT-II), and Controlled Oral Word Association Test. MT data were available in 19 pairs on whom correlation analyses were performed. Associations were seen between SDMT and normalized NAWM volume (P=.034, r=.502), CVLT-II long delay and normalized NAWM volume (P=.012, r=.563), WM-LV (P=.024, r=.514), and BPF (P=.002, r=.666). CONCLUSIONS: The use of 3T MRI in a sample of clinically stable MS patients shows the importance of WM disease in hampering processing speed and word retrieval.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalJournal of Neuroimaging
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • Cognitive functions
  • High-field MRI
  • Magnetization transfer ratio
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Normal-appearing white matter

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging
  • Clinical Neurology


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