Introduction: We performed a systematic review and meta-analysis of the Alzheimer's disease (AD) literature to examine consistency of functional connectivity alterations in AD dementia and mild cognitive impairment, using resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging.
Methods: Studies were screened using a standardized procedure. Multiresolution statistics were performed to assess the spatial consistency of findings across studies.
Results: Thirty-four studies were included (1363 participants, average 40 per study). Consistent alterations in connectivity were found in the default mode, salience, and limbic networks in patients with AD dementia, mild cognitive impairment, or in both groups. We also identified a strong tendency in the literature toward specific examination of the default mode network.
Discussion: Convergent evidence across the literature supports the use of resting-state connectivity as a biomarker of AD. The locations of consistent alterations suggest that highly connected hub regions in the brain might be an early target of AD.
Keywords: Alzheimer's disease; Functional connectivity; Meta-analysis; Mild cognitive impairment; Resting-state fMRI.