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Nina Hedayati, Kylie Schibli, Amedeo D'Angiulli
Children (aged 9-12) training in an El Sistema-inspired program (OrKidstra) and a matched comparison group participated in an auditory Go/No-Go task while event-related potentials (ERPs) were recorded. Entire-sweep waveform patterns correlated with known ERP peaks associated with executive and other cognitive functions and indicated that the spread of neural activity in the initial 250 ms of executive attention processing (pre-P300) showed higher level of topographical overlap in OrKidstra children. In these children, late potentials (post-P300) concurrent with response control were more widely distributed and temporally coordinated...
October 13, 2016: Neurocase
Julia Merrill, Marc Bangert, Daniela Sammler, Angela D Friederici
Song and speech represent two auditory categories the brain usually classifies fairly easily. Functionally, this classification ability may depend to a great extent on characteristic features of pitch patterns present in song melody and speech prosody. Anatomically, the temporal lobe (TL) has been discussed as playing a prominent role in the processing of both. Here we tested individuals with congenital amusia and patients with unilateral left and right TL lesions in their ability to categorize song and speech...
October 11, 2016: Neurocase
Jessica M Ross, John R Iversen, Ramesh Balasubramaniam
There is growing interest in whether the motor system plays an essential role in rhythm perception. The motor system is active during the perception of rhythms, but is such motor activity merely a sign of unexecuted motor planning, or does it play a causal role in shaping the perception of rhythm? We present evidence for a causal role of motor planning and simulation, and review theories of internal simulation for beat-based timing prediction. Brain stimulation studies have the potential to conclusively test if the motor system plays a causal role in beat perception and ground theories to their neural underpinnings...
October 11, 2016: Neurocase
Carlo Abbate, Pietro Davide Trimarchi, Emanuela Rotondo, Silvia Inglese, Paola Nicolini, Paolo Dionigi Rossi, Beatrice Arosio, Daniela Mari
Confabulation may be present in Alzheimer's disease (AD), but usually it is not a primary feature of either its typical or atypical variants. In this report, we describe the case of an AD patient who showed an unusual and enduring neuropsychiatric phenotype characterized by early and prominent spontaneous confabulation. Surprisingly, such atypical AD presentation bears a striking resemblance to presbyophrenia, a subtype of dementia which was described at the beginning of the twentieth century and then sank into oblivion...
October 5, 2016: Neurocase
Simon Kang Seng Ting, Pei Shi Chia, Kevin Kwek, Wilnard Tan, Shahul Hameed
Number processing disorder is an acquired deficit in mathematical skills commonly observed in Alzheimer's disease (AD), usually as a consequence of neurological dysfunction. Common impairments include syntactic errors (800012 instead of 8012) and intrusion errors (8 thousand and 12 instead of eight thousand and twelve) in number transcoding tasks. This study aimed to understand the characterization of AD-related number processing disorder within an alphabetic language (English) and ideographical language (Chinese), and to investigate the differences between alphabetic and ideographic language processing...
September 28, 2016: Neurocase
Brian M Sandroff, Julia M Balto, Rachel E Klaren, Sarah K Sommer, John DeLuca, Robert W Motl
Cognitive impairment is common and debilitating among persons with multiple sclerosis (MS) and might be managed with exercise training. The present pilot study adopted a single-blind randomized controlled trial (RCT) design and is the first to examine the effect of a systematically developed, progressive treadmill walking exercise training intervention on cognition among fully ambulatory persons with MS. Ten fully ambulatory females with MS were randomly assigned into exercise training intervention or waitlist control conditions...
September 27, 2016: Neurocase
Aislinn J Williams, Zhenni Wang, Stephan F Taylor
New-onset psychotic symptoms often respond well to antipsychotic treatment; however, symptoms may be difficult to treat when an underlying brain malformation is present. Here, we present a case of atypical psychotic symptoms in the context of a congenital cerebellar malformation (Dandy-Walker variant). The patient ultimately improved with paliperidone palmitate after multiple antipsychotic medication trials (both oral and one long-acting injectable) were ineffective. Neuroimaging may provide valuable diagnostic and prognostic information in cases of new-onset psychosis with atypical features and treatment resistance, even in the absence of neurologic signs and symptoms...
September 23, 2016: Neurocase
Christopher O'Grady, Antonina Omisade, R Mark Sadler
This report describes the findings of language functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) in a left-handed Urdu and English speaker with right hemisphere-originating epilepsy and unclear language dominance. fMRI is a reliable method for determining hemispheric language dominance in presurgical planning. However, the effects of bilingualism on language activation depend on many factors including age of acquisition and proficiency in the tested language, and morphological properties of the language itself. This case demonstrates that completing fMRI in both spoken languages and interpreting the results within the context of a neuropsychological assessment are essential in arriving at accurate conclusions about language distribution in bilingual patients...
September 21, 2016: Neurocase
Daniel J Levitin, Scott T Grafton
Functional brain imaging has revealed much about the neuroanatomical substrates of higher cognition, including music, language, learning, and memory. The technique lends itself to studying of groups of individuals. In contrast, the nature of expert performance is typically studied through the examination of exceptional individuals using behavioral case studies and retrospective biography. Here, we combined fMRI and the study of an individual who is a world-class expert musician and composer in order to better understand the neural underpinnings of his music perception and cognition, in particular, his mental representations for music...
August 12, 2016: Neurocase
M Rosa Elosúa, Matías Peinado, María José Contreras, J Manuel Reales, Pedro R Montoro
This study adapted a new task to assess visuospatial and verbal working memory impairments in patients with Alzheimer Disease (AD), including an executive strategy of information suppression. The aim was to examine the visuospatial and verbal difficulties, and additionally to explore the average sex differences, during a 2-year follow-up study. The results indicated that patients with AD showed a significantly lower performance, compared with healthy elderly controls, especially with the suppression of information required in this new task...
August 5, 2016: Neurocase
Chia-Pei Lin, Chih-Pang Chu, Hsing-Cheng Liu
Apathy is a common neurobehavioral sign in cases of behavioral variant frontotemporal dementia. However, there is still no established sustained effective treatment. We present the case of a 65-year-old man with behavioral variant frontotemporal dementia who suffered from severe apathy, but his apathy improved after a 10-month period of bupropion treatment. His single photon emission computed tomography report also showed slight improvement. To the best of our knowledge, such a case with imaging evidence has never been reported...
August 2, 2016: Neurocase
Yang-Teng Fan, Keh-Chung Lin, Ho-Ling Liu, Ching-Yi Wu, Yau-Yau Wai, Tsong-Hai Lee
Robot-assisted bilateral arm therapy (RBAT) has shown promising results in stroke rehabilitation; however, connectivity mapping of the sensorimotor networks after RBAT remains unclear. We used fMRI before and after RBAT and a dose-matched control intervention (DMCI) to explore the connectivity changes in 6 subacute stroke patients. Sensorimotor functions improved in the RBAT and DMCI groups after treatment. Enhanced activation changes were observed in bilateral primary motor cortex (M1) and bilateral supplementary motor area (SMA) after RBAT...
August 2, 2016: Neurocase
Juan E Small, P Monroe Butler, Yuval Zabar, Jed A Barash
Acute and complete ischemia of the hippocampi represents a rare cause of amnesia. This paper describes the features of four such cases presenting to a single tertiary care center over a 3-year period. Interestingly, in three instances, toxicology screening was positive for opioids at the time of presentation, while in the fourth, there was a known, reportedly remote, history of heroin use. Taken together with the known literature on the topic, complete hippocampal ischemia appears at least highly suggestive of a toxic exposure...
July 28, 2016: Neurocase
M de Montalembert, N Coulon, D Cohen, O Bonnot, S Tordjman
Timing disorders in schizophrenia are a well-known phenomenon. However, no studies have yet assessed the role of temporal distortions in early-onset schizophrenia (EOS), despite evidence that distorted time perception may share genetic risk factors with schizophrenia and may be a useful indicator in identifying individuals at risk for schizophrenia. In the present study, we investigated the ability of 10 patients with EOS (mean age = 21.5 years, SD = 6) matched with 20 healthy control participants (mean age = 25...
August 2016: Neurocase
Yumiko Yamaoka, Mitsuaki Bandoh, Kensuke Kawai
We report two extremely rare cases involving the development of transient selective retrograde amnesia for simple machine operation lasting for several hours. A 61-year-old male taxi driver suddenly became unable to operate a taximeter, and a 66-year-old female janitor suddenly became unable to use a fax machine. They could precisely recount their episodes to others both during and after the attacks, and their memories during their attacks corresponded to the memory of the witness and the medical records of the doctor, respectively...
August 2016: Neurocase
Ricardo Pizarro, Veena Nair, Timothy Meier, Ryan Holdsworth, Evelyn Tunnell, Paul Rutecki, Karl Sillay, Mary E Meyerand, Vivek Prabhakaran
Seizure localization includes neuroimaging like electroencephalogram, and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) with limited ability to characterize the epileptogenic network. Temporal clustering analysis (TCA) characterizes epileptogenic network congruent with interictal epileptiform discharges by clustering together voxels with transient signals. We generated epileptogenic areas for 12 of 13 epilepsy patients with TCA, congruent with different areas of seizure onset. Resting functional MRI (fMRI) scans are noninvasive, and can be acquired quickly, in patients with different levels of severity and function...
August 2016: Neurocase
Joanna Atkinson, Tanya Lyons, David Eagleman, Bencie Woll, Jamie Ward
Many synesthetes experience colors when viewing letters or digits. We document, for the first time, an analogous phenomenon among users of signed languages who showed color synesthesia for fingerspelled letters and signed numerals. Four synesthetes experienced colors when they viewed manual letters and numerals (in two cases, colors were subjectively projected on to the hands). There was a correspondence between the colors experienced for written graphemes and their manual counterparts, suggesting that the development of these two types of synesthesia is interdependent despite the fact that these systems are superficially distinct and rely on different perceptual recognition mechanisms in the brain...
August 2016: Neurocase
Fabrizia Caminiti, Simona De Salvo, Domenica Nunnari, Placido Bramanti, Rosella Ciurleo, Francesca Granata, Silvia Marino
Parosmia has been described in neurological disorders, including temporal epilepsy. We reported a case of parosmia associated with unilateral hyposmia and mesial temporal sclerosis. We assessed the olfactory function by using Sniffin' sticks test and olfactory event-related potentials (OERPs). The findings of unilateral deficit of identification associated with parosmia only in the side ipsilateral to mesial temporal sclerosis area, that involves temporal olfactory regions responsible for higher level of smell processing, suggest a central genesis of olfactory disorders...
August 2016: Neurocase
Jutta S Mayer, Joseph Neimat, Bradley S Folley, Sarah K Bourne, Peter E Konrad, David Charles, Sohee Park
Deep brain stimulation (DBS) of the subthalamic nucleus (STN) improves the motor symptoms of Parkinson's disease (PD). The STN may represent an important relay station not only in the motor but also the associative cortico-striato-thalamocortical pathway. Therefore, STN stimulation may alter cognitive functions, such as working memory (WM). We examined cortical effects of STN-DBS on WM in early PD patients using functional near-infrared spectroscopy. The effects of dopaminergic medication on WM were also examined...
August 2016: Neurocase
Marilena Aiello, Vincenzo Silani, Raffaella I Rumiati
Patients with different types of dementia may exhibit pathological eating habits, including food fads, hyperphagia, or even ingestion of inanimate objects. Several findings reveal that such eating alterations are more common in patients with frontotemporal dementia (FTD) than other types of dementia. Moreover, eating alterations may differ between the two variants of the disease, namely the behavioral variant and semantic dementia (SD). In this review, we summarized evidences regarding four areas: eating and body weight alterations in FTD, the most common assessment methods, anatomical correlates of eating disorders, and finally, proposed underlying mechanisms...
August 2016: Neurocase
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