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Journal of Aging Research
Volume 2011 (2011), Article ID 187219, 11 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.4061/2011/187219
Research Article

Striatal Hypodensities, Not White Matter Hypodensities on CT, Are Associated with Late-Onset Depression in Alzheimer's Disease

1Department of Psychology, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA 90089, USA
2Department of Neurology, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA 90033, USA
3Department of Radiology, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA 90033, USA
4Department of Preventive Medicine, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA 90089, USA
5Department of Medical Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Karolinska Institutet, 17177 Stockholm, Sweden

Received 16 April 2011; Accepted 22 July 2011

Academic Editor: Ana Verdelho

Copyright © 2011 Jessica A. Brommelhoff et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

This study examined whether there were neuroanatomical differences evident on CT scans of individuals with dementia who differed on depression history. Neuroanatomical variables consisted of visual ratings of frontal lobe deep white matter, subcortical white matter, and subcortical gray matter hypodensities in the CT scans of 182 individuals from the Study of Dementia in Swedish Twins who were diagnosed with dementia and had information on depression history. Compared to individuals with Alzheimer's disease and no depression, individuals with Alzheimer's disease and late-onset depression (first depressive episode at age 60 or over) had a greater number of striatal hypodensities (gray matter hypodensities in the caudate nucleus and lentiform nucleus). There were no significant differences in frontal lobe deep white matter or subcortical white matter. These findings suggest that late-onset depression may be a process that is distinct from the neurodegenerative changes caused by Alzheimer's disease.