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Abstract #2059

White matter abnormalities are associated with cognitive dysfunction in secondary progressive multiple sclerosis

K.A. Meijer 1 , M. Cercignani 2 , N. Muhlert 1 , V. Sethi 1 , D. Chard 1,3 , M. Ron 1 , A.J. Thompson 1,3 , D.H. Miller 1,3 , J.J.G. Geurts 4 , and O. Ciccarelli 1,3

1 NMR Unit, Queen Square MS Centre, UCL Institute of Neurology, London, United Kingdom, 2 Clinical Imaging Sciences Centre, Brighton and Sussex Medical School, Brighton, United Kingdom, 3 NIHR University College London Hospitals, Biomedical Research Centre, London, United Kingdom, 4 Department of Anatomy and Neuroscience, VU University Medical Centre, Amsterdam, Netherlands

We investigated whether loss of white matter integrity is associated with cognitive dysfunction in secondary progressive (SPMS) patients using tract-based spatial statistics (TBSS). Cognitively impaired patients showed a more extensive loss of WM integrity than cognitively preserved patients; most pronounced differences were observed in the fornix, corpus callosum, forceps major, right inferior longitudinal fasciculus and right uncinate fasciculus. In patients, the DTI metrics of many of these tracts showed significant correlations with processing speed and visual memory processing, suggesting that disruption in these tracts may result in a disconnection syndrome which is responsible for cognitive impairment in MS.

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