Repository logo

Neuroimaging correlates of cognitive impairment and dementia in Parkinson's disease.

Change log


Su, Li 
Williams, Guy B 
O'Brien, John T 


There has been a gradual shift in the definition of Parkinson's disease, from a movement disorder to a neurodegenerative condition affecting multiple cognitive domains. Mild cognitive impairment (PD-MCI) is a frequent comorbidity in PD that is associated with progression to dementia (PDD) and debilitating consequences for patients and caregivers. At present, the pathophysiology underpinning cognitive impairment in PD is not established, although emerging evidence has suggested that multi-modal imaging biomarkers could be useful in the early diagnosis of PD-MCI and PDD, thereby identifying at-risk patients to enable treatment at the earliest stage possible. Structural MRI studies have revealed prominent grey matter atrophy and disruptions of white matter tracts in PDD, although findings in non-demented PD have been more variable. There is a need for further longitudinal studies to clarify the spatial and temporal progression of morphological changes in PD, as well as to assess their underlying involvement in the evolution of cognitive deficits. In this review, we discuss the aetiology and neuropsychological profiles of PD-MCI and PDD, summarize the putative imaging substrates in light of evidence from multi-modal neuroimaging studies, highlight limitations in the present literature, and suggest recommendations for future research.



Cognitive impairment, Lewy bodies, MRI, Neuroimaging, Parkinson's disease, Brain, Cognitive Dysfunction, Dementia, Disease Progression, Humans, Neuroimaging, Parkinson Disease

Journal Title

Parkinsonism Relat Disord

Conference Name

Journal ISSN


Volume Title



Elsevier BV
This work was supported by the NIHR Biomedical Research Unit in Dementia and the Biomedical Research Centre awarded to Cambridge University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and the University of Cambridge, and the NIHR Biomedical Research Unit in Dementia and the Biomedical Research Centre awarded to Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and the Newcastle University. Elijah Mak was in receipt of a Gates Cambridge PhD studentship.