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Clinical Neuroscience

SEPTEMBER 30, 2020

[The role of sleep in the relational memory processes ]

CSÁBI Eszter, ZÁMBÓ Ágnes, PROKECZ Lídia

[A growing body of evidence suggests that sleep plays an essential role in the consolidation of different memory systems, but less is known about the beneficial effect of sleep on relational memory processes and the recognition of emotional facial expressions, however, it is a fundamental cognitive skill in human everyday life. Thus, the study aims to investigate the effect of timing of learning and the role of sleep in relational memory processes. 84 young adults (average age: 22.36 (SD: 3.22), 21 male/63 female) participated in our study, divided into two groups: evening group and morning group indicating the time of learning. We used the face-name task to measure relational memory and facial expression recognition. There were two sessions for both groups: the immediate testing phase and the delayed retesting phase, separated by 24 hours. 84 young adults (average age: 22.36 (SD: 3.22), 21 male/63 female) participated in our study, divided into two groups: evening group and morning group indicating the time of learning. We used the face-name task to measure relational memory and facial expression recognition. There were two sessions for both groups: the immediate testing phase and the delayed retesting phase, separated by 24 hours. Our results suggest that the timing of learning and sleep plays an important role in the stabilizing process of memory representation to resist against forgetting.]

Clinical Neuroscience

MAY 30, 2020

Alexithymia is associated with cognitive impairment in patients with Parkinson’s disease

SENGUL Yildizhan, KOCAK Müge, CORAKCI Zeynep, SENGUL Serdar Hakan, USTUN Ismet

Cognitive dysfunction (CD) is a common non-motor symptom of Parkinson’s disease (PD). Alexithy­mia is a still poorly understood neuropsychiatric feature of PD. Cognitive impairment (especially visuospatial dysfunction and executive dysfunction) and alexithymia share com­mon pathology of neuroanatomical structures. We hypo­thesized that there must be a correlation between CD and alexithymia levels considering this relationship of neuroanatomy. Objective – The aim of this study was to evaluate the association between alexithymia and neurocognitive function in patients with PD. Thirty-five patients with PD were included in this study. The Toronto Alexithymia Scale–20 (TAS-20), Geriatric Depression Inventory (GDI) and a detailed neuropsychological evaluation were performed. Higher TAS-20 scores were negatively correlated with Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale (WAIS) similarities test score (r =-0.71, p value 0.02), clock drawing test (CDT) scores (r=-0.72, p=0.02) and verbal fluency (VF) (r=-0.77, p<0.01). Difficulty identifying feelings subscale score was negatively correlated with CDT scores (r=-0.74, p=0.02), VF scores (r=-0.66, p=0.04), visual memory immediate recall (r=-0.74, p=0.01). VF scores were also correlated with difficulty describing feelings (DDF) scores (r=-0.66, p=0.04). There was a reverse relationship bet­ween WAIS similarities and DDF scores (r=-0.70, p=0.02), and externally oriented-thinking (r=-0.77,p<0.01). Executive function Z score was correlated with the mean TAS-20 score (r=-62, p=0.03) and DDF subscale score (r=-0.70, p=0.01) Alexithymia was found to be associated with poorer performance on visuospatial and executive function test results. We also found that alexithymia was significantly correlated with depressive symptoms. Presence of alexithymia should therefore warn the clinicians for co-existing CD.

Clinical Neuroscience

NOVEMBER 20, 2015

[Hyperglycaemic hemiballismus: implications from connectivity analysis for cognitive impairments]

KINCSES Tamás Zsigmond, VADÁSZ Dávid, NÉMETH Dezsõ, JANACSEK Karolina, SZABÓ Nikoletta, DÉZSI Lívia, BABOS Magor, VÖRÖS Erika, VÉCSEI László

[Hyperglycaemia induced movement disorders, such as hemiballism are rare disorders. The syndrome is characterised by the triad of hemiballism, contralateral T1-hyperintense striatal lesion and non-ketotic hyperglycaemia. Here we report a patient with untreated diabetes presenting with acute onset of hemiballism. MRI revealed T1 hyperintensity of the head of the caudate nucleus and the anterior putamen. The patient also had acantocytosis. Based on the detailed examination of the neuroradiological results and earlier findings we will imply on the pathomechanism. Based on previous findings microhemorrhages, extensive mineralisation, gemistocytic astrocytosis might play role in the development of the imaging signs. The connectivity pattern of the striatal lesion showed extensive connections to the frontal cortex. In coexistence with that the most severe impairment was found on the phonemic verbal fluency task measuring frontal executive functions. ]

Clinical Neuroscience

NOVEMBER 30, 2018

Pulmonary physiotherapy and aerobic exercise programs can improve cognitive functions and functional ability

TEKESIN Aysel, TUNC Abdulkadir, GÜNGEN Dogan Belma, AVCI Nalan, BAKIS Muhammed, PERK Seyma

Objective - The increasing prevalence of dementia over the previous decades has been accompanied by numerous social and economic problems. The importance of exercise in the prevention of dementia coupled with the impact of aspiration pneumonia on the mortality and morbidity of dementia patients cannot be overstated. This study investigates the effects of pulmonary rehabilitation combined with aerobic stretching exercises on the cognitive function, life quality, effort capacity, and level of depression in patients with mild cognitive impairment (MCI) in the early stages of dementia. Methods - Sixty-nine patients with MCI diagnosis were routinely monitored, and six were excluded because they did not attend the follow-up appointments. The remaining 63 patients undertook pulmonary physiotherapy (PPT) and extremity exercises for six months. The mini-mental state examination (MMSE), six-minute walk test (6MWT), Nottingham health profile (NHP), and Beck depression inventory (BDI) scores were evaluated before and after exercise. Results - PPT plus extremity exercises appeared to significantly improve the MMSE scores and increase the 6MWT (p < 0.001) by an average of 25 m. No significant improvement was observed in the BDI and NHP scores. Conclusion - PPT and aerobic exercise positively affected the cognitive ability of MCI patients and improved their walking distance. These results underscore the importance of combining medical treatment with physical rehabilitation at the onset of dementia, a disease which exerts a significantly negative impact on the economy.

Clinical Neuroscience

SEPTEMBER 30, 2019

[Newer studies on the strong link between sleep and epilepsy: Epilepsy as an epileptic transformation of sleep plastic functions]


[Aims - Overview of the new data about the strong link of sleep and epilepsy and conjoining cognitive impairment. Methods - Search for relevant references and summary of our own research activity on the topic. Results - Strong interrealtionship exists between epilepsy and plastic brain functions (memory processing and synaptic homeostasis) and the working modes of NREM sleep. In the most frequent childhood and adult epilepsy networks responsible for plastic functions can be derailed to an epileptic level of excitability, and suffer a transitory or permanent epileptic transformation. Exampling on the three big epilepsies: absence epilepsy; medial temporal lobe epilepsy; and childhood idiopathic focal age dependent epilepsy spectrum we demonstrate the most important features of this epileptic transformation. The association of cognitive impairment to certain sleep dependent epilepsies gains explanation by the epilepsy caused interference with slow wave decline (ICFE) and memory consolidation (MTLE) during NREM sleep. This paper serves also to introduce the concept of sleep dependent system epilepsies. Conclusions - We provide evidences about shared mechanisms among sleep related epilepsies being the derailment of sleep plastic funcions toward exaggerated excitability determined by the inherent possibilities of the signal transduction properties. ]