Research Papers: Gerotarget (Focus on Aging):

Presence of lacunar infarctions is associated with the spatial navigation impairment in patients with mild cognitive impairment: a DTI study

Yan-Feng Wu, Wen-Bo Wu, Qing-Ping Liu, Wen-Wen He, Hong Ding, Zuzana Nedelska, Jakub Hort, Bing Zhang _ and Yun Xu

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Oncotarget. 2016; 7:78310-78319. https://doi.org/10.18632/oncotarget.13409

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Yan-Feng Wu1,2,*, Wen-Bo Wu1,*, Qing-Ping Liu2, Wen-Wen He3, Hong Ding2, Zuzana Nedelska4, 5, Jakub Hort4, Bing Zhang6 and Yun Xu1,7,8

1 Department of Neurology, the Affiliated Drum Tower Hospital of Nanjing Medical University, Nanjing, Jiangsu, P. R. China

2 Department of Neurology, the Second Affiliated Hospital of Nanjing Medical University, Nanjing, Jiangsu, P. R. China

3 Department of Radiology, The Second Affiliated Hospital of Nanjing Medical University, Nanjing, Jiangsu, P. R. China

4 Department of Neurology, Memory Disorders Clinic, Charles University in Prague, 2nd Faculty of Medicine and Motol University Hospital, Prague, Czech Republic

5 International Clinical Research Center, St.Anne’s University Hospital Brno, Brno, Czech Republic

6 Department of Radiology, The Affiliated Drum Tower Hospital of Nanjing University Medical School, Nanjing, Jiangsu, P. R. China

7 Jiangsu Key Laboratory for Molecular Medicine, Nanjing University Medical School, Nanjing, China

8 Nanjing Medical Research Center on Neurology and Psychiatry, Jiangsu, P. R. China

* These authors have contributed equally to this study

Correspondence to:

Bing Zhang , email:

Yun Xu , email:

Keywords: lacunar infarction, mild cognitive impairment, spatial navigation, diffusion tensor imaging, Gerotarget

Received: August 02, 2016 Accepted: November 06, 2016 Published: November 16, 2016


Lacunar cerebral infarction (LI) is one of risk factors of vascular dementia and correlates with progression of cognitive impairment including the executive functions. However, little is known on spatial navigation impairment and its underlying microstructural alteration of white matter in patients with LI and with or without mild cognitive impairment (MCI). Our aim was to investigate whether the spatial navigation impairment correlated with the white matter integrity in LI patients with MCI (LI-MCI). Thirty patients with LI were included in the study and were divided into LI-MCI (n=17) and non MCI (LI-Non MCI) groups (n=13) according neuropsychological tests.The microstructural integrity of white matter was assessed by calculating a fractional anisotropy (FA) and mean diffusivity (MD) from diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) scans. The spatial navigation accuracy, separately evaluated as egocentric and allocentric, was assessed by a computerized human analogue of the Morris Water Maze tests Amunet. LI-MCI performed worse than the CN and LI-NonMCI groups on egocentric and delayed spatial navigation subtests. LI-MCI patients have spatial navigation deficits. The microstructural abnormalities in diffuse brain regions, including hippocampus, uncinate fasciculus and other brain regions may contribute to the spatial navigation impairment in LI-MCI patients at follow-up.

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