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Quantitative EEG and cholinergic basal forebrain atrophy in Parkinson's disease and mild cognitive impairment

Rea, River C, Berlot, Rok, Martin, Sarah L, Craig, Chesney E, Holmes, Paul S, Wright, David J, Bon, Jurij, Pirtošek, Zvezdan and Ray, Nicola J (2021) Quantitative EEG and cholinergic basal forebrain atrophy in Parkinson's disease and mild cognitive impairment. Neurobiology of Aging, 106. ISSN 0197-4580

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Abstract

Cholinergic degeneration is a key feature of dementia in neurodegenerative conditions including Alzheimer's disease (AD) and Parkinson's disease (PD). Quantitative electro-encephalography (EEG) metrics are altered in both conditions from early stages, and recent research in people with Lewy body and AD dementia suggests these changes may be associated with atrophy in cholinergic basal forebrain nuclei (cBF). To determine if these relationships exist in predementia stages of neurodegenerative conditions, we studied resting-state EEG and in vivo cBF volumes in 31 people with PD (without dementia), 21 people with mild cognitive impairment (MCI), and 21 age-matched controls. People with PD showed increased power in slower frequencies and reduced alpha reactivity compared to controls. Volumes of cholinergic cell clusters corresponding to the medial septum and vertical and horizontal limb of the diagonal band, and the posterior nucleus basalis of Meynert, correlated positively with; alpha reactivity in people with PD (p< 0.01); and pre-alpha power in people with MCI (p< 0.05). These results suggest that alpha reactivity and pre-alpha power are related to changes in cBF volumes in MCI and PD without dementia.

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