Curr Opin Neurol
PURPOSE OF REVIEW: Neuropsychiatric lupus (NPSLE) comprises a disparate collection of syndromes affecting the central and peripheral nervous systems. Progress in the attribution of neuropsychiatric syndromes to SLE-related mechanisms and development of targeted treatment strategies has been impeded by a lack of objective imaging biomarkers that reflect specific neuropsychiatric syndromes and/or pathologic mechanisms. The present review addresses recent publications of neuroimaging techniques in NPSLE. RECENT FINDINGS: Imaging studies grouping all NPSLE syndromes together are unable to differentiate between NPSLE and non-NPSLE. In contrast, diffusion tensor imaging, FDG-PET, resting, and functional MRI techniques in patients with stable non-NPSLE demonstrate abnormal network structural and functional connectivity and regional brain activity in multiple cortical areas involving the limbic system, hippocampus, frontal, parietal, and temporal lobes. Some of these changes associate with impaired cognitive performance or mood disturbance, autoantibodies or inflammatory proteins. Longitudinal data suggest progression over time. DCE-MRI demonstrates increased Blood-brain barrier permeability. SUMMARY: Study design issues related to patient selection (non-NPSLE vs. NPSLE syndromes, SLE disease activity, medications) are critical for biomarker development. Regional and network structural and functional changes identified with advanced brain imaging techniques in patients with non-NPSLE may be further developed as biomarkers for cognitive and mood disorders attributable to SLE-related mechanisms.
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Faculty; Northwell Researcher
School of Medicine; Northwell Health
General Internal Medicine