Exploring the Phenotype in Mild Cognitive Impairment to Aid the Prediction of Those at Risk of Transitioning to Parkinson Disease and Dementia With Lewy Bodies

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To date, only limited research has concurrently investigated the presence of rapid eye movement sleep behavior disorder (RBD) and other features associated with Parkinson disease (PD) and dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB) in people presenting with mild cognitive impairment (MCI). As a first step towards a longitudinal research project, the present study explored the relationships between MCI, RBD, and depression in 108 older adults who presented with subjective memory complaints but were not known to have a neurodegenerative condition. The present study found that RBD was a frequent feature in individuals with MCI (35%). Furthermore, MCI patients with RBD were more likely to exhibit nonamnestic MCI (89%) rather than an amnestic MCI phenotype (χ2 = 4.99, P = .025). Specifically, nonamnestic MCI patients with RBD had selective deficits in executive function and verbal memory, as well as a higher level of depressive symptoms. This cognitive and psychiatric profile is aligned with PD and DLB patients at their time of initial diagnosis and suggests that targeting nonamnestic MCI patients who report RBD with additional biomarker testing including smell, color vision, and neuroimaging (eg, dopamine transporters scan and transcranial ultrasonography) may aid in early diagnosis and prediction of these α-synucleinopathies.

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