News Round-Up: December 2008 4th Edition.

There is a report on a new measure of atrophy in the Medial Temporal Lobe and it’s use in predicting dementia as well as a case report on blindsight.


A new visual scoring system for rating atrophy of the Medial Temporal Lobe has been tested in a study of people with probable Alzheimer Disease (n=53), no cognitive impairment (n=117) and non-amnestic mild cognitive impairment (n=46). People with no cognitive impairment were used as the reference group and the use of a cut-off score of 1.33 on the MTA score showed 85% sensitivity and 82% specificity for probable Alzheimer Disease (STT2).


A reduction in grey matter volume in frontal, temporal and parietal regions was found in people with at risk mental state who went on to develop psychosis in one study involving 20 people (10 people developing psychosis) (STT4). A post-mortem study found decreased neuronal cell number in layer 2 of the dorso-caudal region of the insular cortex in schizophrenia relative to controls (STT4). In another study there was found to be a reduction in putamen volumes bilaterally in people with schizophrenia (STT4). In a secondary analysis of 240 people with first episode psychosis there was found to be remission in 36.7% (remission being correlated with many factors including increased symptom change with time).


There was widespread reporting on a man with blindsight who was successfully able to navigate objects in a corridor. This presumably represents unconscious processing in intact accessory visual pathways.


The comments made here represent the opinions of the author and do not represent the profession or any body/organisation. The comments made here are not meant as a source of medical advice and those seeking medical advice are advised to consult with their own doctor. The author is not responsible for the contents of any external sites that are linked to in this blog.

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