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Systematic review of data-driven cognitive subtypes in Parkinson’s disease

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Rachael LawsonORCiD



This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License (CC BY-NC-ND).


Introduction: Recent application of the Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI) concept to Parkinson’s disease (PD) has proven valuable in identifying patients at risk of dementia. However, it has sparked controversy regarding the existence of cognitive subtypes. The present review evaluates the current literature pertaining to data-driven subtypes of cognition in PD. Method: Following PRISMA guidelines, systematic literature searches for peer-reviewed articles on the topic of cognitive subtyping in PD were performed. Results: Twenty-two (22) relevant articles were identified in the systematic search. Subtype structures showed either a spectrum of severity or specific domains of impairment. Domain-specific subtypes included amnestic/non-amnestic, memory/executive, and frontal/posterior dichotomies, as well as more complex structures with less definitive groupings. Preliminary longitudinal evidence showed some differences in cognitive progression among subtypes. Neuroimaging evidence provided insight into distinct patterns of brain alterations among subtypes. Conclusions: Recurring phenotypes in the literature suggest strong clinical relevance of certain cognitive subtypes in PD. Although the current literature is limited, it raises critical questions about the utility of data-driven methods in cognitive research. The results encourage further integration of neuroimaging research to define the latent neural mechanisms behind divergent subtypes. While there is no consensus, there appears to be growing consistency and inherent value in identifying cognitive subtypes in PD.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Pourzinal D, Yang J, Lawson RA, McMahon KL, Byrne GJ, Dissanayaka NN

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: European Journal of Neurology

Year: 2022

Volume: 29

Issue: 11

Pages: 3395-3417

Print publication date: 01/11/2022

Online publication date: 04/07/2022

Acceptance date: 30/06/2022

Date deposited: 21/07/2022

ISSN (print): 1351-5101

ISSN (electronic): 1468-1331

Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell Publishing Ltd


DOI: 10.1111/ene.15481


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Funder referenceFunder name
Australian Government
National Health and Medical Research Council