Background: Systemic vascular disease is associated with an increased risk of incident Alzheimer's disease (AD). We cross-sectionally related an index of vascular health to neuroimaging markers associated with cerebrovascular disease and AD in individuals with mild cognitive impairment (MCI), a purported precursor to AD. Methods: 51 participants from the Alzheimer's Disease Neuroimaging Initiative with baseline diagnoses of mild cognitive impairment were included (74+/-8 years; 53% women). T1-weighted MRI scans were post-processed using FreeSurfer. An index of vascular health was calculated using a modified Framingham Stroke Risk Profile (mFSRP) score that included age, systolic blood pressure, anti-hypertensive medication usage, diabetes, cigarette smoking status, and history of prevalent cardiovascular disease. mFSRP scores were cross-sectionally correlated with structural neuroimaging markers associated with cerebrovascular disease (i.e., white matter hypo intensities; WMH) and AD (i.e., hippocampal volume and entorhinal cortex volume). All neuroimaging variables were adjusted for intra-cranial volume. Results: The mFSRP score significantly correlated with WMH (r=0.45, p=0.001) and hippocampal volume (r=-0.28, p=0.046); however, the mFSRP did not correlate with entorhinal cortex volume (r=-0.19, p=0.17). Conclusions: Our cross-sectional comparisons suggest an index of vascular health is related to neuroimaging markers associated with both cerebrovascular disease and AD. In particular, worse systemic vascular health is associated with a greater burden ofWMHand smaller hippocampal volumes in individuals with MCI. Future studies are needed to replicate the current findings and better understand how management of systemic vascular health affects diagnostic trajectory.
Jefferson, A., Gifford, K., Chapman, G., Dobrmyslin, V., Palmisano, J., Gentile, A., … Salat, D. (2011). P3-299: An index of vascular health is associated with white matter and hippocampal changes in individuals with mild cognitive impairment. Alzheimer’s & Dementia, 7, S612–S612. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jalz.2011.05.1741