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Sex differences in brain atrophy in dementia with Lewy bodies

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Frederic Blanc, Professor John-Paul TaylorORCiD, Dr Dag Aarsland



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


© 2023 The Authors. Alzheimer's & Dementia published by Wiley Periodicals LLC on behalf of Alzheimer's Association.INTRODUCTION: Sex influences neurodegeneration, but it has been poorly investigated in dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB). We investigated sex differences in brain atrophy in DLB using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). METHODS: We included 436 patients from the European-DLB consortium and the Mayo Clinic. Sex differences and sex-by-age interactions were assessed through visual atrophy rating scales (n = 327; 73 ± 8 years, 62% males) and automated estimations of regional gray matter volume and cortical thickness (n = 165; 69 ± 9 years, 72% males). RESULTS: We found a higher likelihood of frontal atrophy and smaller volumes in six cortical regions in males and thinner olfactory cortices in females. There were significant sex-by-age interactions in volume (six regions) and cortical thickness (seven regions) across the entire cortex. DISCUSSION: We demonstrate that males have more widespread cortical atrophy at younger ages, but differences tend to disappear with increasing age, with males and females converging around the age of 75. Highlights: Male DLB patients had higher odds for frontal atrophy on radiological visual rating scales. Male DLB patients displayed a widespread pattern of cortical gray matter alterations on automated methods. Sex differences in gray matter measures in DLB tended to disappear with increasing age.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Oltra J, Habich A, Schwarz CG, Nedelska Z, Przybelski SA, Inguanzo A, Diaz-Galvan P, Lowe VJ, Oppedal K, Gonzalez MC, Philippi N, Blanc F, Barkhof F, Lemstra AW, Hort J, Padovani A, Rektorova I, Bonanni L, Massa F, Kramberger MG, Taylor J-P, Snaedal JG, Walker Z, Antonini A, Dierks T, Segura B, Junque C, Westman E, Boeve BF, Aarsland D, Kantarci K, Ferreira D

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Alzheimer's and Dementia

Year: 2024

Volume: 20

Issue: 3

Pages: 1815-1826

Print publication date: 01/03/2024

Online publication date: 22/12/2023

Acceptance date: 10/11/2023

Date deposited: 05/01/2024

ISSN (print): 1552-5260

ISSN (electronic): 1552-5279

Publisher: John Wiley and Sons Inc


DOI: 10.1002/alz.13571


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Funder referenceFunder name
ALF Medicine
Åke Wiberg Foundation, Hjärnfonden
Birgitta och Sten Westerberg
Center for Innovative Medicine
Charles University PRIMUS 22/MED/011
Elsie and Marvin Dekelboum Family Foundation
European Union – Next Generation EU LX22NPO5107 (MEYS)
Fondation Université de Strasbourg
Foundation Dr Corinne Schuler
Foundation for Geriatric Diseases at Karolinska Institutet
Karolinska Institutet Travel grants
Innovation and Universities and co-financed by the European Social Fund. PRE2018-086675
Mangurian Foundation for Lewy Body Research
Little Family Foundation
LMMEYS CR 2018129 Czech-BioImaging
National Institutes of Health U01-NS100620, P50-AG016574, U01-AG006786, R37-AG011378, R01-AG041851, R01-AG040042, C06-RR018898, R01-NS080820
Ministry of Health of the Czech Republic. NU20-04-00294
National Institute for Health Research (NIHR)
Swedish Dementia Foundation (Demensförbundet)
Projet Hospitalier de Recherche Clinique (PHRC) IDCRB 2012-A00992-41
Robert H. and Clarice Smith and Abigail Van Buren Alzheimer's Disease Research Program
Royal Society Wolfson Research Merit Award Holder
Spanish Ministry of Science
Strategic Research Program in Neuroscience at Karolinska Institutet (StratNeuro)
Swedish Alzheimer's Foundation (Alzheimerfonden)
Swedish Brain Foundation (Hjärnfonden)
Swedish Foundation for Strategic Research
Swedish Research Council
Western Norway Regional Health Authority
Western Norway Regional Health Authority by Postdoc 912152