Higher midlife CAIDE score is associated with increased brain atrophy in a cohort of cognitively healthy middle-aged individuals.
BACKGROUND: Structural brain changes associated with Alzheimer's disease (AD) can occur decades before the onset of symptoms. The Cardiovascular Risk Factors, Aging, and Dementia (CAIDE) score has been suggested to be associated with accelerated brain atrophy in middle-aged subjects but the regional specificity of atrophic areas remains to be elucidated. METHODS: 3T T1-weighted magnetic resonance imaging scans of 160 cognitively healthy middle-aged participants (mean age = 52) in the PREVENT-Dementia cohort, from baseline and from follow-up after 2 years, were examined. Images were preprocessed using Computational Anatomy Toolbox 12. Voxel-based morphometry was performed in FSL 6.0.1 to identify areas of grey matter (GM) volume differences both cross-sectionally and longitudinally between subjects with high and low baseline CAIDE score (CAIDE score was dichotomized at cohort-median). A GM percentage of change map was created for each subject for evaluation of atrophy over 2 years. Analyses were adjusted for age, gender, education and total intracranial volume. RESULTS: Compared to subjects with CAIDE score ≤ 6 (low risk), subjects with CAIDE score > 6 (high risk) showed lower GM volume in the temporal, occipital, and fusiform cortex and lingual gyrus at baseline, and greater percentage of GM loss over 2 years in the supramarginal gyrus, angular gyrus, precuneus, lateral occipital cortex, superior parietal lobule and cingulate gyrus (corrected P < 0.05). CONCLUSION: This study demonstrated accelerated GM atrophy concentrated in several AD signature cortical regions in healthy middle-aged subjects with high CAIDE scores.