Subtypes of functional brain connectivity as early markers of neurodegeneration in Alzheimer’s disease

For the Alzheimer’s Disease Neuroimaging Initiative, and the Pre-symptomatic Evaluation of Novel or Experimental Treatments for Alzheimer’s Disease Program

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Highlights Reliable functional brain network subtypes accompany cognitive impairment in ADSymptom-related subtypes exist in the default-mode, limbic and salience networksA limbic subtype is associated with a familial risk of AD in healthy older adultsLimbic subtypes also associate with beta amyloid deposition and ApoE4 In Brief We found reliable subtypes of functional brain connectivity networks in older adults, associated with AD-related clinical symptoms in patients as well as several AD risk factors/biomarkers in asymptomatic individuals. Summary The heterogeneity of brain degeneration has not been investigated yet for functional brain network connectivity, a promising biomarker of Alzheimer’s disease. We coupled cluster analysis with resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging to discover connectivity subtypes in healthy older adults and patients with cognitive disorders related to Alzheimer’s disease, noting associations between subtypes and cognitive symptoms in the default-mode, limbic and salience networks. In an independent asymptomatic cohort with a family history of Alzheimer’s dementia, the connectivity subtypes had good test-retest reliability across all tested networks. We found that a limbic subtype was overrepresented in these individuals, which was previously associated with symptoms. Other limbic subtypes showed associations with cerebrospinal fluid Aβ1-42 levels and ApoE4 genotype. Our results demonstrate the existence of reliable subtypes of functional brain networks in older adults and support future investigations in limbic connectivity subtypes as early biomarkers of Alzheimer’s degeneration.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalUnknown Journal
StatePublished - Sep 28 2017
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
  • Immunology and Microbiology(all)
  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Pharmacology, Toxicology and Pharmaceutics(all)


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