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Electrophysiological correlates of amnestic mild cognitive impairment in a simon task

, : Electrophysiological correlates of amnestic mild cognitive impairment in a simon task. Plos One 8(12): E81506-E81506

Amnestic mild cognitive impairment (aMCI) represents a prodromal stage of Alzheimer`s disease (AD), especially when additional cognitive domains are affected (Petersen et al., 2009). Thus, single-domain amnestic MCI (sdaMCI) and multiple-domain-amnestic MCI (mdaMCI) biomarkers are important for enabling early interventions to help slow down progression of the disease. Recording event-related potentials (ERPs) is a non-invasive and inexpensive measure of brain activity associated with cognitive processes, and it is of interest from a clinical point of view. The ERP technique may also be useful for obtaining early sdaMCI and mdaMCI biomarkers because ERPs are sensitive to impairment in processes that are not manifested at behavioral or clinical levels. In the present study, EEG activity was recorded in 25 healthy participants and 30 amnestic MCI patients (17 sdaMCI and 13 mdaMCI) while they performed a Simon task. The ERPs associated with visuospatial (N2 posterior-contralateral - N2pc -) and motor (lateralized readiness potential - LRP -) processes were examined. The N2pc amplitude was smaller in participants with mdaMCI than in healthy participants, which indicated a decline in the correlates of allocation of attentional resources to the target stimulus. In addition, N2pc amplitude proved to be a moderately good biomarker of mdaMCI subtype (0.77 sensitivity, 0.76 specificity). However, the LRP amplitude was smaller in the two MCI groups (sdaMCI and mdaMCI) than in healthy participants, revealing a reduction in the motor resources available to execute the response in sdaMCI and mdaMCI patients. Furthermore, the LRP amplitude proved to be a valid biomarker (0.80 sensitivity, 0.92 specificity) of both amnestic MCI subtypes.


PMID: 24339941

DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0081506

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