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Cardiac responses to viewing facial emotion differentiate frontotemporal dementias

Marshall, CR; Hardy, CJD; Allen, M; Russell, LL; Clark, CN; Bond, RL; Dick, KM; ... Warren, JD; + view all (2018) Cardiac responses to viewing facial emotion differentiate frontotemporal dementias. Annals of Clinical and Translational Neurology , 5 (6) pp. 687-696. 10.1002/acn3.563. Green open access

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Abstract

Objective: To establish proof-of-principle for the use of heart rate responses as objective measures of degraded emotional reactivity across the frontotemporal dementia spectrum, and to demonstrate specific relationships between cardiac autonomic responses and anatomical patterns of neurodegeneration. Methods: Thirty-two patients representing all major frontotemporal dementia syndromes and 19 healthy older controls performed an emotion recognition task, viewing dynamic, naturalistic videos of facial emotions while ECG was recorded. Cardiac reactivity was indexed as the increase in interbeat interval at the onset of facial emotions. Gray matter associations of emotional reactivity were assessed using voxel-based morphometry of patients' brain MR images. Results: Relative to healthy controls, all patient groups had impaired emotion identification, whereas cardiac reactivity was attenuated in those groups with predominant fronto-insular atrophy (behavioral variant frontotemporal dementia and nonfluent primary progressive aphasia), but preserved in syndromes focused on the anterior temporal lobes (right temporal variant frontotemporal dementia and semantic variant primary progressive aphasia). Impaired cardiac reactivity correlated with gray matter atrophy in a fronto-cingulo-insular network that overlapped correlates of cognitive emotion processing. Interpretation: Autonomic indices of emotional reactivity dissociate from emotion categorization ability, stratifying frontotemporal dementia syndromes and showing promise as novel biomarkers. Attenuated cardiac responses to the emotions of others suggest a core pathophysiological mechanism for emotional blunting and degraded interpersonal reactivity in these diseases.

Type: Article
Title: Cardiac responses to viewing facial emotion differentiate frontotemporal dementias
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1002/acn3.563
Publisher version: http://doi.org/10.1002/acn3.563
Language: English
Additional information: Copyright © 2018 The Authors. Annals of Clinical and Translational Neurology published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc on behalf of American Neurological Association. This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology > Clinical and Movement Neurosciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology > Imaging Neuroscience
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology > Neurodegenerative Diseases
URI: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10047425
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