The hippocampus and adjacent extrahippocampal structures are organized in distinct and specialized regions which process heterogeneous functions, including memory, and visuospatial functions. Specific alterations of the different hippocampal subfields and adjacent extrahippocampal structures could differently contribute to the pathophysiology of Alzheimer's disease (AD) and dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB). Based on visual symptoms which characterize DLB patients, the hippocampal subfields and the adjacent extrahippocampal structures which are mainly involved in the visual functions could be impaired in DLB and preserved in AD. To test this hypothesis, we performed structural magnetic resonance imaging on 19 DLB, 15 AD, and 19 age-matched healthy controls. FreeSurfer's pipelines were used to perform parcellation of hippocampus and adjacent extrahippocampal structures and to assess the structural changes within each region. The cornu ammonis and subiculum were bilaterally damaged in AD and preserved in DLB. The perirhinal cortex and parahippocampus were damaged in DLB but not in AD. Our findings demonstrate that the hippocampal subfields and adjacent extrahippocampal structures were differently altered in AD and DLB. Particularly, DLB patients showed a more focused alteration of the extrahippocampal structures linked to visual functions.
Neurobiology of Aging – Elsevier
Published: Apr 1, 2016
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