Resting-State Cardiac Workload is Related to Both Increased Neocortical Aggregation of Amyloid-β and Relative Impairments in Spatial Working Memory in Pre-Clinical Alzheimer's Disease

J Alzheimers Dis. 2016;50(1):127-31. doi: 10.3233/JAD-150576.


We sought to determine whether there is any association between a cardiac workload marker, rate pressure product (RPP), working memory, and cortical amyloid-β (Aβ) burden in 63 cognitively normal midlife adults (Mage = 62.8 years; range = 55 to 75 years) at risk for Alzheimer's disease (AD). The results show a small-to-moderate relationship between increasing cardiac workload (at rest) and neocortical amyloidosis in individuals at the preclinical stage of AD. Moreover, increasing RPP was linearly related to increasing relative impairments on a spatial working memory task (R2 = 0.30), but only for those individuals with neuroimaging evidence suggestive of preclinical AD. These results support a relationship between the aggregation of Aβ protein plaques in the neocortex, increased cognitive impairment, and more inefficient myocardial oxygen use in the absence of significant metabolic demands.

Keywords: Alzheimer’s disease; amyloid beta-peptides; blood pressure; cardiovascular diseases; cerebrovascular disorders; comorbidity; memory; mild cognitive impairment; risk factors; short-term; workload.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Alzheimer Disease / diagnosis*
  • Amyloid beta-Peptides / metabolism*
  • Blood Pressure / physiology
  • Disease Progression
  • Female
  • Heart Rate / physiology
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Maze Learning
  • Memory Disorders* / metabolism
  • Memory Disorders* / pathology
  • Memory Disorders* / physiopathology
  • Middle Aged
  • Neocortex / diagnostic imaging
  • Neocortex / metabolism*
  • Neuropsychological Tests
  • Positron-Emission Tomography
  • Protein Aggregation, Pathological / etiology*
  • Workload*


  • Amyloid beta-Peptides