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Gray Matter Volume Losses in ET Examined

Parkinsonism Relat Disord; ePub 2018 Mar 10; Cameron, et al

Gray matter (GM) volume loss in essential tremor (ET) is present beyond the cerebellum, according to a recent study, and was found to be widespread throughout the cerebrum as well. Researchers acquired MRIs on 47 ET cases and 36 controls. Automated segmentation and voxel-wise comparisons of volume were performed using Statistical Parametric Mapping (SPM) software. To improve upon standard protocols, the high-resolution International Consortium for Brain Mapping (ICBM) 2009a atlas and tissue probability maps were used to process each subject image. Group comparisons were performed: all ET vs controls, ET with head tremor (ETH) vs controls, and severe ET vs controls. An analysis of variance (ANOVA) was performed between ET with and without head tremor and controls. Age, sex, and Montreal Cognitive Assessment (MoCA) score were regressed out from each comparison. They found:

  • Regions of cerebral GM volume loss in ET and in ET subgroups in the posterior insula, superior temporal gyri, cingulate cortex, inferior frontal gyri, and other occipital and parietal regions, were consistently identified.
  • There were no significant increases in GM volume in ET in any comparisons with controls.


Cameron E, Dyke JP, Hernandez N, Louis ED, Dydak U. Cerebral gray matter volume losses in essential tremor: A case-control study using high resolution tissue probability maps. [Published online ahead of print March 10, 2018]. Parkinsonism Relat Disord. doi:10.1016/j.parkreldis.2018.03.008.