Changes in LASSI-L performance over time among older adults with amnestic MCI and amyloid positivity: A preliminary study

Marcela Kitaigorodsky, Rosie E. Curiel Cid, Elizabeth Crocco, Katherine L. Gorman, Christian J. González-Jiménez, Maria Greig-Custo, Warren W. Barker, Ranjan Duara, David A. Loewenstein

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


There is a pressing need to develop measures that are sensitive to the earliest subtle cognitive changes of Alzheimer's disease (AD) to improve early detection and track disease progression. The Loewenstein-Acevedo Scales of Semantic Interference (LASSI-L) has been shown to successfully discriminate between cognitively unimpaired (CU) older adults and those with amnestic mild cognitive impairment (MCI) and to correlate with total and regional brain amyloid load. The present study investigated how the LASSI-L scores change over time among three distinct diagnostic groups. Eighty-six community-dwelling older adults underwent a baseline evaluation including: a clinical interview, a neuropsychological evaluation, Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI), and amyloid Positron Emission Tomography (PET). A follow up evaluation was conducted 12 months later. Initial mean values were calculated using one-way ANOVAs and chi-square analyses. Post-hoc comparisons were conducted using Tukey's Honestly Significant Difference (HSD). A 3 × 2 repeated measures analysis was utilized to examine differences in LASSI-L performance over time. The MCI amyloid positive group demonstrated a significantly greater decline in LASSI-L performance than the MCI amyloid negative and CU groups respectively. The scales that best differentiated the three groups included the Cued A2, which taps into maximum learning capacity, and Cued B2, which assesses the failure to recover from proactive semantic interference. Our findings further support the LASSI-L's discriminative validity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)98-105
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Psychiatric Research
StatePublished - Nov 2021
Externally publishedYes


  • Alzheimer's disease
  • Biomarkers
  • Cognitive outcome measures
  • Dementia
  • Mild cognitive impairment
  • Proactive semantic interference

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Biological Psychiatry


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