Young Alzheimer patients show distinct regional changes of oscillatory brain dynamics

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The objective of this study was to examine the differences in oscillatory brain dynamics in Alzheimer's disease (AD) according to age at onset using quantitative electroencephalography (EEG). We examined resting state electroencephalograms of 320 probable AD patients and 246 controls, both categorized into a young (≤ 65 years) and old (> 65 years) group. Relative power in 4 different frequency bands was calculated. The effect of age on global and regional relative power was examined. Globally, young AD patients showed lower alpha- and higher delta-power than old AD patients. Regional analysis showed that these differences were most pronounced in the parieto-occipital region. Young AD patients had lower beta- and higher theta-power than old patients in all but the temporal regions. In controls, there was no age effect on global relative power in any frequency band. Young AD patients present with more severe slowing of spontaneous oscillatory activity than old AD patients, which is most pronounced in the posterior brain areas. This finding supports the hypothesis that early onset AD presents with a distinct endophenotype.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1008.e25-1008.e31
JournalNeurobiology of aging
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - May 2012


  • Alzheimer's disease
  • Early onset
  • Electroencephalography
  • Quantitative analysis

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