Neuronal loss associated with cognitive performance in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis: An (C-11)-flumazenil PET study

P Wicks, M R Turner, S Abrahams, A Hammers, D J Brooks, P N Leigh, L H Goldstein

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

49 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a multi-system disorder. Mild cognitive deficits are present in a subgroup of non-demented patients with ALS. Detailed neuropsychological assessments reveal deficits of word retrieval including impairments on tests of verbal fluency and confrontation naming. The PET GABAA receptor ligand [C-11]-flumazenil is a marker of neuronal dysfunction in ALS. This study used [C-11]-flumazenil PET to identify correlations between cortical regions and impairments in word retrieval. Twelve patients with ALS underwent [C-11]-flumazenil PET and neuropsychological assessment, including tests of written letter fluency and confrontation naming. Poorer performance on verbal fluency correlated with decreased [C-11]-flumazenil binding in a region including the right inferior frontal gyrus, superior temporal gyrus, and anterior insula. Poorer performance on a test of confrontation naming correlated with decreased binding in the left middle frontal gyrus (extending to Broca's area) and left cuneus. This study indicates that [C-11]-flumazenil PET can be used to help localize cortical regions associated with cognitive deficits in ALS
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)43 - 49
Number of pages7
JournalAmyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (United Kingdom)
Volume9
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2008

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