Frontiers in neurology

Mild Cognitive Impairment: Structural, Metabolical, and Neurophysiological Evidence of a Novel EEG Biomarker.

PMID 26217299


Recent studies demonstrate that the alpha3/alpha2 power ratio correlates with cortical atrophy, regional hypoperfusion, and memory impairment in subjects with mild cognitive impairment (MCI). Evidences were reviewed in subjects with MCI, who underwent EEG recording, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans, and memory evaluation. Alpha3/alpha2 power ratio (alpha2 8.9-10.9 Hz range; alpha3 10.9-12.9 Hz range), cortical thickness, linear EEG coherence, and memory impairment have been evaluated in a large group of 74 patients. A subset of 27 subjects within the same group also underwent single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) evaluation. In MCI subjects with higher EEG upper/low alpha power ratio, a greater temporo-parietal and hippocampal atrophy was found as well as a decrease in regional blood perfusion and memory impairment. In this group, an increase of theta oscillations is associated with a greater interhemispheric coupling between temporal areas. The increase of alpha3/alpha2 power ratio is a promising novel biomarker in identifying MCI subjects at risk for Alzheimer's disease.