JNS.jpgThe November issue of the Journal of the Neurological Sciences Vol 442 is now available online.


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Issue highlights

Full length article

Relationship between CSF tau biomarkers and structural brain MRI measures in frontotemporal lobar degeneration

Fenu et al.

Recently in the field neurodegenerative diseases increasing attention has been pointed to CSF biomarkers and their integration with neuroimaging. Frontotemporal lobar degeneration (FTLD) refers to a heterogeneous group of clinical syndromes with different underlying proteinopathies including tau pathology. CSF biomarkers have been proposed as diagnostic and prognostic factors. Aim of our study was to evaluate the relationship between CSF tau biomarkers and structural MRI brain measures in FTLD.

Our data suggest that CSF biomarkers, especially p-tau/t-tau ratio, could play a role as prognostic factor in FTLD. Further longitudinal investigations are needed to confirm these findings.

Review Article

Open Access

Cerebral control of swallowing: An update on neurobehavioral evidence

Cheng et al.

This review aims to update the current knowledge on the cerebral control of swallowing. We review data from both animal and human studies spanning across the fields of neuroanatomy, neurophysiology and neuroimaging to evaluate advancements in our understanding in the brain's role in swallowing.

Studies have collectively shown that swallowing is mediated by multiple distinct cortical and subcortical regions and that lesions to these regions can result in dysphagia. These regions are functionally connected in separate groups within and between the two hemispheres. While hemispheric dominance for swallowing has been reported in most human studies, the laterality is inconsistent across individuals. Moreover, there is a shift in activation location and laterality between swallowing preparation and execution, although such activation changes are less well-defined than that for limb motor control.

Finally, we discussed recent neurostimulation treatments that may be beneficial for dysphagia after brain injury through promoting the reorganization of the swallowing neural network.

Full length article

Reading difficulties in amblyopia: Consequence of visual sensory and oculomotor dysfunction

Bhutada et al.

Reading is a vision-reliant task, requiring sequential eye movements. Binocularly discordant input results in visual sensory and oculomotor dysfunction in amblyopia, which may contribute to reading difficulties.

This study aims to determine the contributions of fixation eye movement (FEM) abnormalities, clinical type and severity of amblyopia to reading performance under binocular and monocular viewing conditions.

The presence of oculomotor dysfunction and the extent of visual acuity and stereoacuity deficits contribute to reading difficulties in patients with amblyopia, with and without nystagmus. The understanding of reading difficulties is essential to devise accommodations to limit long-term academic and vocational consequences of amblyopia.

Full length article

Persistent brain damage in reversible cerebral vasoconstriction syndrome on 99mTc-ethyl cysteinate dimer single-photon emission computed tomography: A long-term observational study

Kunitake et al.

Blood-brain barrier (BBB) breakdown is considered a key step in the pathophysiology of reversible cerebral vasoconstriction syndrome (RCVS); however, its temporal course remains unclear.

Based on the characteristics and dynamics of 99mTc-ethyl cysteinate dimer (99mTc-ECD) as a tracer, 99mTc-ECD single-photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) can detect not only hypoperfusion but also BBB breakdown and/or brain tissue damage. Therefore, this study aimed to investigate this course using 99mTc-ECD SPECT.

Reduced cerebral uptake of 99mTc-ECD persisted in the late stage of RCVS, even after vasoconstriction and headache subsided. BBB breakdown and/or brain tissue damage may underlie this phenomenon. 99mTc-ECD SPECT is an effective neuroimaging method to detect brain functional abnormalities, reflecting BBB breakdown or tissue damages, throughout the treatment course of RCVS.