Identifying individuals at risk of developing dementia is crucial for early intervention. Mild cognitive impairment (MCI) and subjective memory complaints (SMCs) are considered its preceding stages. This study aimed to assess the utility of functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) in identifying individuals with MCI and SMC.
One hundred fifty-one participants were categorized into normal cognition (NC); amnestic MCI (aMCI); non-amnestic MCI (naMCI); and mild, moderate, and severe SMC groups. Task-related prefrontal hemodynamics were measured using fNIRS during a visual memory span task.
Results showed significantly lower oxyhemoglobin (HbO) levels in aMCI, but not in naMCI, compared to the NC. In addition, severe SMC had lower HbO levels than the NC, mild, and moderate SMC. Receiver operating characteristic analysis demonstrated 69.23% and 69.70% accuracy in differentiating aMCI and severe SMC from NC, respectively.
FNIRS may serve as a potential non-invasive biomarker for early detection of dementia.

Only amnestic mild cognitive impairment (aMCI), but not non-amnestic MCI, showed lower oxyhemoglobin (HbO) than normal individuals.
Reduced HbO was observed in those with severe subjective memory complaints (SMCs) compared to normal cognition (NC), mild, and moderate SMCs.
Functional near-infrared spectroscopy measures were associated with performance in memory assessments.
Prefrontal hemodynamics could distinguish aMCI and severe SMC from NC.

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This post is Copyright: Tsz‐lok Lee,
Lizhi Guo,
Agnes S. Chan | June 5, 2024

Wiley: Alzheimer’s & Dementia: Table of Contents