Aberrant vascular architecture in the hippocampus correlates with tau burden in mild cognitive impairment and Alzheimer’s disease

Hansol Lee, Jessie Fanglu Fu, Kyla Gaudet, Annie G. Bryant, Julie C. Price, Rachel E. Bennett, Keith A. Johnson, Bradley T. Hyman, Trey Hedden, David H. Salat, Yi Fen Yen, Susie Y. Huang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

Cerebrovascular dysfunction is a significant contributor to Alzheimer’s disease (AD) progression. AD mouse models show altered capillary morphology, density, and diminished blood flow in areas of tau and beta-amyloid accumulation. The purpose of this study was to examine alterations in vascular structure and their contributions to perfusion deficits in the hippocampus in AD and mild cognitive impairment (MCI). Seven individuals with AD and MCI (1 AD/6 MCI), nine cognitively intact older healthy adults, and seven younger healthy adults underwent pseudo-continuous arterial spin labeling (PCASL) and gradient-echo/spin-echo (GESE) dynamic susceptibility contrast (DSC) MRI. Cerebral blood flow (CBF), cerebral blood volume, relative vessel size index (rVSI), and mean vessel density were calculated from model fitting. Lower CBF from PCASL and SE DSC MRI was observed in the hippocampus of AD/MCI group. rVSI in the hippocampus of the AD/MCI group was larger than that of the two healthy groups (FDR-P = 0.02). No difference in vessel density was detected between the groups. We also explored relationship of tau burden from 18F-flortaucipir positron emission tomography and vascular measures from MRI. Tau burden was associated with larger vessel size and lower CBF in the hippocampus. We postulate that larger vessel size may be associated with vascular alterations in AD/MCI.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)787-800
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Cerebral Blood Flow and Metabolism
Volume44
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - May 2024

Keywords

  • Alzheimer’s disease
  • hippocampus
  • magnetic resonance imaging
  • vascular alteration
  • vessel size imaging

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