Unique brain iron profiles associated with logopenic progressive aphasia and posterior cortical atrophy

Research output: Contribution to journalComment/debatepeer-review


Background: Quantitative susceptibility mapping (QSM) can detect iron distribution in the brain by estimating the local tissue magnetic susceptibility of every voxel. Dysregulation of neuronal iron has been correlated with typical Alzheimer’s disease (tAD), but little is known about iron distribution in atypical clinical presentations of AD such as logopenic progressive aphasia (LPA) and posterior cortical atrophy (PCA). Method: Eleven PCA patients and eight LPA patients were recruited by the Neurodegenerative Research Group at Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN, and underwent MRI that included a five-echo gradient echo sequence for calculation of QSM. Mean QSM signal was extracted from gray and white matter for regions-of-interest across the brain using the Mayo Clinic Adult Lifespan Template. Hierarchical models were fit per-region and per-hemisphere to compare PCA and LPA to each other, to 20 healthy controls, and to 20 patients with tAD recruited by the Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center. Result: Strong evidence (posterior probability>0.99) was observed for greater susceptibility in the left middle occipital gyrus and amygdala in both LPA and PCA, and in the right precuneus and inferior temporal gyrus in PCA compared to controls. Moderate evidence for greater susceptibility (posterior probability>0.90) was also observed in the left insula, inferior occipital gyrus, entorhinal cortex, and right inferior parietal gyrus and amygdala in both LPA and PCA, along with right angular gyrus and middle occipital gyrus in PCA and right insula and caudate in LPA, when compared to controls. Comparing between phenotypes, LPA showed moderate evidence for greater susceptibility in the caudate, hippocampus, substantia nigra, left supramarginal gyrus and posterior cingulate compared to PCA, while PCA showed greater susceptibility in the right precuneus compared to LPA. Both LPA and PCA showed moderate-strong evidence for greater susceptibility than tAD, particularly in medial and lateral parietal regions. Conclusion: Unique iron profiles were identified in LPA and PCA within cortical and subcortical structures. These changes are in line with disease-related neurodegenerative changes in the clinical phenotypes, suggesting that QSM could be an informative marker to study iron deposition in these patients.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere063271
JournalAlzheimer's and Dementia
Issue numberS1
StatePublished - Dec 2022

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Epidemiology
  • Health Policy
  • Developmental Neuroscience
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


Dive into the research topics of 'Unique brain iron profiles associated with logopenic progressive aphasia and posterior cortical atrophy'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this