Aéja Marie Pinto

Aéja Marie Pinto

Brain Functional Network Biomarkers of Cognitive Impairment Transitions in Aging


Aéja Marie Pinto, Parker Kotlarz, Juan Claudio Nino, Marcelo Febo


Dr. Marcelo Febo


College of Medicine


Alzheimer’s disease (AD) is a neurodegenerative disease that is most characterized by extracellular beta-amyloid plaques and tau proteins and notable for its symptoms of dementia. The incidence of AD, particularly its sporadic non-hereditary form, is rising as the global population ages. Thus far there are no treatments to prevent the development of AD or stop its progression. Compounding the progress on therapeutic developments are elusive early-stage pre-AD biomarkers hidden within a span of decades before signs of cognitive impairment first appear. Network analysis of functional brain imaging data from participants at distinct stages of normal cognitive aging and cognitive decline, from mild-to-severe cognitive impairment, have been hypothesized to reveal unique pre-AD disease markers of progression. Our research explores biomarkers and the possibility of early diagnosis via identifiable biomarkers using an artificial intelligence (AI) approach. The overarching goal of the present project is to determine which brain-wide and local regional measures of functional connectivity are significantly linked to specific stages of mild, moderate, and severe cognitive impairment. In applying a biomarker AI approach and network analysis, we expect that we can identify biomarkers effectively and hope to impact the future diagnosis and treatment of Alzheimer’s disease and apply this research to other neurodegenerative diseases in the future.


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Research Pitch

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