Structural connectivity and dementia in the general population

Takeaway

  • Structural disconnectivity as assessed by diffusion weighted magnetic resonance imaging (DWI) is associated with increased dementia risk and more marked cognitive decline in dementia-free individuals.

Why this matters

  • Dementia makes a substantial contribution to mortality rates, disability and socioeconomic burden worldwide, but development of effective interventions is hampered by a lack of understanding of its pathophysiology.

  • Diffusion weighted imaging may be useful as a prediction tool for dementia risk in the general population, potentially reducing the time between initial onset of underlying neural deficits and clinical diagnosis, and impacting development of treatment strategies.