MRI Markers Predict Cognitive Decline Assessed by Telephone Interview: The Northern Manhattan Study

Clinton B. Wright, Chuanhui Dong, Michelle R. Caunca, Janet Derosa, Ying Kuen Cheng, Tatjana Rundek, Mitchell S.V. Elkind, Charles DeCarli, Ralph L. Sacco

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Background: Brain magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) allows researchers to observe structural pathology that may predict cognitive decline. Some populations are less accessible through traditional in-person visits, and may be under-represented in the literature. Methods: We examined white matter hyperintensity volume (WMHV) and cerebral parenchymal fraction (CPF) as predictors of cognitive decline measured by a modified Telephone Interview for Cognitive Status (TICS-m) in the Northern Manhattan Stroke Study, a racially and ethnically diverse cohort study. Participants were stroke-free, above 50 years old, and had no contraindications to MRI. A total of 1143 participants had MRI and TICS-m data available [mean age 70 (SD=9), 61% women, 66% Hispanic, 17% Black, 15% white]. Results: Those in the third and fourth quartiles of WMHV had significantly greater decline in TICS-m over time as compared with those in the first quartile (Q3:-0.17 points/year, Q4:-0.30 points/year). Those in the bottom 2 quartiles of CPF had significantly greater decline in TICS-m than those in the top quartile (Q1:-0.3 points/year, Q2:-0.2 points/year). Apolipoprotein E (APOE) e4 allele carriers had greater cognitive decline per unit of CPF. Those with greater CPF preserve TICS-m performance better despite greater WMHV. Conclusions: Telephone cognitive assessments can detect decline due to white matter lesions and smaller brain volumes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)34-40
Number of pages7
JournalAlzheimer disease and associated disorders
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2017


  • brain volume
  • cognition
  • white matter hyperintensities

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Gerontology
  • Geriatrics and Gerontology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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