Medicine (Austin & Northern Health) - Research Publications

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    Non-negative matrix factorisation improves Centiloid robustness in longitudinal studies
    Bourgeat, P ; Dore, V ; Doecke, J ; Ames, D ; Masters, CL ; Rowe, CC ; Fripp, J ; Villemagne, VL (ACADEMIC PRESS INC ELSEVIER SCIENCE, 2021-02-01)
    BACKGROUND: Centiloid was introduced to harmonise β-Amyloid (Aβ) PET quantification across different tracers, scanners and analysis techniques. Unfortunately, Centiloid still suffers from some quantification disparities in longitudinal analysis when normalising data from different tracers or scanners. In this work, we aim to reduce this variability using a different analysis technique applied to the existing calibration data. METHOD: All PET images from the Centiloid calibration dataset, along with 3762 PET images from the AIBL study were analysed using the recommended SPM pipeline. The PET images were SUVR normalised using the whole cerebellum. All SUVR normalised PiB images from the calibration dataset were decomposed using non-negative matrix factorisation (NMF). The NMF coefficients related to the first component were strongly correlated with global SUVR and were subsequently used as a surrogate for Aβ retention. For each tracer of the calibration dataset, the components of the NMF were computed in a way such that the coefficients of the first component would match those of the corresponding PiB. Given the strong correlations between the SUVR and the NMF coefficients on the calibration dataset, all PET images from AIBL were subsequently decomposed using the computed NMF, and their coefficients transformed into Centiloids. RESULTS: Using the AIBL data, the correlation between the standard Centiloid and the novel NMF-based Centiloid was high in each tracer. The NMF-based Centiloids showed a reduction of outliers, and improved longitudinal consistency. Furthermore, it removed the effects of switching tracers from the longitudinal variance of the Centiloid measure, when assessed using a linear mixed effects model. CONCLUSION: We here propose a novel image driven method to perform the Centiloid quantification. The methods is highly correlated with standard Centiloids while improving the longitudinal reliability when switching tracers. Implementation of this method across multiple studies may lend to more robust and comparable data for future research.
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    Trajectories of depressive and anxiety symptoms in older adults: a 6-year prospective cohort study
    Holmes, SE ; Esterlis, I ; Mazure, CM ; Lim, YY ; Ames, D ; Rainey-Smith, S ; Fowler, C ; Ellis, K ; Martins, RN ; Salvado, O ; Dore, V ; Villemagne, VL ; Rowe, CC ; Laws, SM ; Masters, CL ; Pietrzak, RH ; Maruff, P (WILEY, 2018-02-01)
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    Amyloid burden and incident depressive symptoms in cognitively normal older adults
    Harrington, KD ; Gould, E ; Lim, YY ; Ames, D ; Pietrzak, RH ; Rembach, A ; Rainey-Smith, S ; Martins, RN ; Salvado, O ; Villemagne, VL ; Rowe, CC ; Masters, CL ; Maruff, P (WILEY, 2017-04-01)
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    Increased cerebral blood flow with increased amyloid burden in the preclinical phase of alzheimer's disease
    Fazlollahi, A ; Calamante, F ; Liang, X ; Bourgeat, P ; Raniga, P ; Dore, V ; Fripp, J ; Ames, D ; Masters, CL ; Rowe, CC ; Connelly, A ; Villemagne, VL ; Salvado, O (WILEY, 2020-02-01)
    BACKGROUND: Arterial spin labeling (ASL) is an emerging MRI technique for noninvasive measurement of cerebral blood flow (CBF) that has been used to show hemodynamic changes in the brains of people with Alzheimer's disease (AD). CBF changes have been measured using positron emission tomography (PET) across the AD spectrum, but ASL showed limited success in measuring CBF variations in the preclinical phase of AD, where amyloid β (Aβ) plaques accumulate in the decades prior to symptom onset. PURPOSE: To investigate the relationship between CBF measured by multiphase-pseudocontinuous-ASL (MP-PCASL) and Aβ burden as measured by 11 C-PiB PET imaging in a study of cognitively normal (CN) subjects age over 65. STUDY TYPE: Cross-sectional. POPULATION: Forty-six CN subjects including 33 with low levels of Aβ burden and 13 with high levels of Aβ. FIELD STRENGTH/SEQUENCE: 3T/3D MP-PCASL. ASSESSMENT: The MP-PCASL method was chosen because it has a high signal-to-noise ratio. Furthermore, the data were analyzed using an efficient processing pipeline consisting of motion correction, ASL motion correction imprecision removal, temporal and spatial filtering, and partial volume effect correction. STATISTICAL TESTS: General Linear Model. RESULTS: In CN subjects positive for Aβ burden (n = 13), we observed a positive correlation between CBF and Aβ burden in the hippocampus, amygdala, caudate (P < 0.01), frontal, temporal, and insula (P < 0.05). DATA CONCLUSION: To the best of our knowledge, this is the first study using MP-PCASL in the study of AD, and the results suggest a potential compensatory hemodynamic mechanism that protects against pathology in the early stages of AD. LEVEL OF EVIDENCE: 1 Technical Efficacy: Stage 3 J. Magn. Reson. Imaging 2020;51:505-513.
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    Fifteen Years of the Australian Imaging, Biomarkers and Lifestyle (AIBL) Study: Progress and Observations from 2,359 Older Adults Spanning the Spectrum from Cognitive Normality to Alzheimer's Disease
    Fowler, C ; Rainey-Smith, SR ; Bird, S ; Bomke, J ; Bourgeat, P ; Brown, BM ; Burnham, SC ; Bush, A ; Chadunow, C ; Collins, S ; Doecke, J ; Dore, V ; Ellis, KA ; Evered, L ; Fazlollahi, A ; Fripp, J ; Gardener, SL ; Gibson, S ; Grenfell, R ; Harrison, E ; Head, R ; Jin, L ; Kamer, A ; Lamb, F ; Lautenschlager, NT ; Laws, SM ; Li, Q-X ; Lim, L ; Lim, YY ; Louey, A ; Macaulay, SL ; Mackintosh, L ; Martins, RN ; Maruff, P ; Masters, CL ; McBride, S ; Milicic, L ; Peretti, M ; Pertile, K ; Porter, T ; Radler, M ; Rembach, A ; Robertson, J ; Rodrigues, M ; Rowe, CC ; Rumble, R ; Salvado, O ; Savage, G ; Silbert, B ; Soh, M ; Sohrabi, HR ; Taddei, K ; Taddei, T ; Thai, C ; Trounson, B ; Tyrrell, R ; Vacher, M ; Varghese, S ; Villemagne, VL ; Weinborn, M ; Woodward, M ; Xia, Y ; Ames, D (IOS PRESS, 2021-01-01)
    BACKGROUND: The Australian Imaging, Biomarkers and Lifestyle (AIBL) Study commenced in 2006 as a prospective study of 1,112 individuals (768 cognitively normal (CN), 133 with mild cognitive impairment (MCI), and 211 with Alzheimer's disease dementia (AD)) as an 'Inception cohort' who underwent detailed ssessments every 18 months. Over the past decade, an additional 1247 subjects have been added as an 'Enrichment cohort' (as of 10 April 2019). OBJECTIVE: Here we provide an overview of these Inception and Enrichment cohorts of more than 8,500 person-years of investigation. METHODS: Participants underwent reassessment every 18 months including comprehensive cognitive testing, neuroimaging (magnetic resonance imaging, MRI; positron emission tomography, PET), biofluid biomarkers and lifestyle evaluations. RESULTS: AIBL has made major contributions to the understanding of the natural history of AD, with cognitive and biological definitions of its three major stages: preclinical, prodromal and clinical. Early deployment of Aβ-amyloid and tau molecular PET imaging and the development of more sensitive and specific blood tests have facilitated the assessment of genetic and environmental factors which affect age at onset and rates of progression. CONCLUSION: This fifteen-year study provides a large database of highly characterized individuals with longitudinal cognitive, imaging and lifestyle data and biofluid collections, to aid in the development of interventions to delay onset, prevent or treat AD. Harmonization with similar large longitudinal cohort studies is underway to further these aims.
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    Association of beta-Amyloid Level, Clinical Progression, and Longitudinal Cognitive Change in Normal Older Individuals
    Van der Kall, LM ; Thanh, T ; Burnham, SC ; Dore, V ; Mulligan, RS ; Bozinovski, S ; Lamb, F ; Bourgeat, P ; Fripp, J ; Schultz, S ; Lim, YY ; Laws, SM ; Ames, D ; Fowler, C ; Rainey-Smith, SR ; Martins, RN ; Salvado, O ; Robertson, J ; Maruff, P ; Masters, CL ; Villemagne, VL ; Rowe, CC (LIPPINCOTT WILLIAMS & WILKINS, 2021-02-02)
    OBJECTIVE: To determine the effect of β-amyloid (Aβ) level on progression risk to mild cognitive impairment (MCI) or dementia and longitudinal cognitive change in cognitively normal (CN) older individuals. METHODS: All CN from the Australian Imaging Biomarkers and Lifestyle study with Aβ PET and ≥3 years follow-up were included (n = 534; age 72 ± 6 years; 27% Aβ positive; follow-up 5.3 ± 1.7 years). Aβ level was divided using the standardized 0-100 Centiloid scale: <15 CL negative, 15-25 CL uncertain, 26-50 CL moderate, 51-100 CL high, >100 CL very high, noting >25 CL approximates a positive scan. Cox proportional hazards analysis and linear mixed effect models were used to assess risk of progression and cognitive decline. RESULTS: Aβ levels in 63% were negative, 10% uncertain, 10% moderate, 14% high, and 3% very high. Fifty-seven (11%) progressed to MCI or dementia. Compared to negative Aβ, the hazard ratio for progression for moderate Aβ was 3.2 (95% confidence interval [CI] 1.3-7.6; p < 0.05), for high was 7.0 (95% CI 3.7-13.3; p < 0.001), and for very high was 11.4 (95% CI 5.1-25.8; p < 0.001). Decline in cognitive composite score was minimal in the moderate group (-0.02 SD/year, p = 0.05), while the high and very high declined substantially (high -0.08 SD/year, p < 0.001; very high -0.35 SD/year, p < 0.001). CONCLUSION: The risk of MCI or dementia over 5 years in older CN is related to Aβ level on PET, 5% if negative vs 25% if positive but ranging from 12% if 26-50 CL to 28% if 51-100 CL and 50% if >100 CL. This information may be useful for dementia risk counseling and aid design of preclinical AD trials.
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    APOE and BDNF polymorphisms moderate amyloid beta-related cognitive decline in preclinical Alzheimer's disease
    Lim, YY ; Villemagne, VL ; Laws, SM ; Pietrzak, RH ; Snyder, PJ ; Ames, D ; Ellis, KA ; Harrington, K ; Rembach, A ; Martins, RN ; Rowe, CC ; Masters, CL ; Maruff, P (NATURE PUBLISHING GROUP, 2015-11-01)
    Accumulation of β-amyloid (Aβ) in the brain is associated with memory decline in healthy individuals as a prelude to Alzheimer's disease (AD). Genetic factors may moderate this decline. We examined the role of apolipoprotein E (ɛ4 carrier[ɛ4(+)], ɛ4 non-carrier[ɛ4(-)]) and brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF(Val/Val), BDNF(Met)) in the extent to which they moderate Aβ-related memory decline. Healthy adults (n=333, Mage=70 years) enrolled in the Australian Imaging, Biomarkers and Lifestyle study underwent Aβ neuroimaging. Neuropsychological assessments were conducted at baseline, 18-, 36- and 54-month follow-ups. Aβ positron emission tomography neuroimaging was used to classify participants as Aβ(-) or Aβ(+). Relative to Aβ(-)ɛ4(-), Aβ(+)ɛ4(+) individuals showed significantly faster rates of cognitive decline over 54 months across all domains (d=0.40-1.22), while Aβ(+)ɛ4(-) individuals showed significantly faster decline only on verbal episodic memory (EM). There were no differences in rates of cognitive change between Aβ(-)ɛ4(-) and Aβ(-)ɛ4(+) groups. Among Aβ(+) individuals, ɛ4(+)/BDNF(Met) participants showed a significantly faster rate of decline on verbal and visual EM, and language over 54 months compared with ɛ4(-)/BDNF(Val/Val) participants (d=0.90-1.02). At least two genetic loci affect the rate of Aβ-related cognitive decline. Aβ(+)ɛ4(+)/BDNF(Met) individuals can expect to show clinically significant memory impairment after 3 years, whereas Aβ(+)ɛ4(+)/BDNF(Val/Val) individuals can expect a similar degree of impairment after 10 years. Little decline over 54 months was observed in the Aβ(-) and Aβ(+) ɛ4(-) groups, irrespective of BDNF status. These data raise important prognostic issues in managing preclinical AD, and should be considered in designing secondary preventative clinical trials.
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    Sensitivity of composite scores to amyloid burden in preclinical Alzheimer's disease: Introducing the Z-scores of Attention, Verbal fluency, and Episodic memory for Nondemented older adults composite score.
    Lim, YY ; Snyder, PJ ; Pietrzak, RH ; Ukiqi, A ; Villemagne, VL ; Ames, D ; Salvado, O ; Bourgeat, P ; Martins, RN ; Masters, CL ; Rowe, CC ; Maruff, P (Wiley, 2016)
    INTRODUCTION: Cognitive composite scores developed for preclinical Alzheimer's disease (AD) often consist of multiple cognitive domains as they may provide greater sensitivity to detect β-amyloid (Aβ)-related cognitive decline than episodic memory (EM) composite scores alone. However, this has never been empirically tested. We compared the rate of cognitive decline associated with high Aβ (Aβ+) and very high Aβ (Aβ++) in cognitively normal (CN) older adults on three multidomain cognitive composite scores and one single-domain (EM) composite score. METHODS: CN older adults (n = 423) underwent Aβ neuroimaging and completed neuropsychological assessments at baseline, and at 18-, 36-, 54-, and 72-month follow-ups. Four cognitive composite scores were computed: the ADCS-PACC (ADCS-Preclinical Alzheimer Cognitive Composite), ADCS-PACC without the inclusion of the mini-mental state examination (MMSE), an EM composite, and the Z-scores of Attention, Verbal fluency, and Episodic memory for Nondemented older adults (ZAVEN) composite. RESULTS: Compared with Aβ+ CN older adults, Aβ++ CN older adults showed faster rates of decline across all cognitive composites, with the largest decline observed for ZAVEN composite (d = 1.07). Similarly, compared with Aβ- CN older adults, Aβ+ CN older adults also showed faster rates of cognitive decline, but only for the ADCS-PACC no MMSE (d = 0.43), EM (d = 0.53), and ZAVEN (d = 0.50) composites. DISCUSSION: Aβ-related cognitive decline is best detected using validated neuropsychological instruments. Removal of the MMSE from the ADCS-PACC and replacing it with a test of executive function (verbal fluency; i.e., the ZAVEN) rendered this composite more sensitive even in detecting Aβ-related cognitive decline between Aβ+ and Aβ++ CN older adults.
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    Amyloid β-associated cognitive decline in the absence of clinical disease progression and systemic illness.
    Harrington, KD ; Lim, YY ; Ames, D ; Hassenstab, J ; Laws, SM ; Martins, RN ; Rainey-Smith, S ; Robertson, J ; Rowe, CC ; Salvado, O ; Doré, V ; Villemagne, VL ; Snyder, PJ ; Masters, CL ; Maruff, P (Wiley, 2017)
    INTRODUCTION: High levels of amyloid β (Aβ) are associated with cognitive decline in cognitively normal (CN) older adults. This study investigated the nature of cognitive decline in healthy individuals who did not progress to mild cognitive impairment or dementia. METHOD: Cognition was measured over 72 months and compared between low (Aβ-) and high (Aβ+) CN older adults (n = 335) who did not progress to mild cognitive impairment or dementia and who remained free of severe or uncontrolled systemic illness. RESULTS: Compared to the Aβ- group, the Aβ+ group showed no cognitive impairment at baseline but showed substantial decline in verbal learning, episodic memory, and attention over 72 months. DISCUSSION: Moderate cognitive decline, particularly for learning and memory, was associated with Aβ+ in CN older adults in the absence of clinical disease progression and uncontrolled or serious comorbid illness.
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    Genetic variation in Aquaporin-4 moderates the relationship between sleep and brain A beta-amyloid burden
    Rainey-Smith, SR ; Mazzucchelli, GN ; Villemagne, VL ; Brown, BM ; Porter, T ; Weinborn, M ; Bucks, RS ; Milicic, L ; Sohrabi, HR ; Taddei, K ; Ames, D ; Maruff, P ; Masters, CL ; Rowe, CC ; Salvado, O ; Martins, RN ; Laws, SM (NATURE PUBLISHING GROUP, 2018-02-26)
    The glymphatic system is postulated to be a mechanism of brain Aβ-amyloid clearance and to be most effective during sleep. Ablation of the astrocytic end-feet expressed water-channel protein, Aquaporin-4, in mice, results in impairment of this clearance mechanism and increased brain Aβ-amyloid deposition, suggesting that Aquaporin-4 plays a pivotal role in glymphatic function. Currently there is a paucity of literature regarding the impact of AQP4 genetic variation on sleep, brain Aβ-amyloid burden and their relationship to each other in humans. To address this a cross-sectional observational study was undertaken in cognitively normal older adults from the Australian Imaging, Biomarkers and Lifestyle (AIBL) study. Genetic variants in AQP4 were investigated with respect to self-reported Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index sleep parameters, positron emission tomography derived brain Aβ-amyloid burden and whether these genetic variants moderated the sleep-Aβ-amyloid burden relationship. One AQP4 variant, rs72878776, was associated with poorer overall sleep quality, while several SNPs moderated the effect of sleep latency (rs491148, rs9951307, rs7135406, rs3875089, rs151246) and duration (rs72878776, rs491148 and rs2339214) on brain Aβ-amyloid burden. This study suggests that AQP4 genetic variation moderates the relationship between sleep and brain Aβ-amyloid burden, which adds weight to the proposed glymphatic system being a potential Aβ-amyloid clearance mechanism and suggests that AQP4 genetic variation may impair this function. Further, AQP4 genetic variation should be considered when interpreting sleep-Aβ relationships.