Objective: To assess our hypothesis that brain macrostructure is different in individuals with mucopolysaccharidosis type I (MPS I) and healthy controls (HC), we conducted a comprehensive multicenter study using a uniform quantitative magnetic resonance imaging (qMRI) protocol, with analyses that account for the effects of disease phenotype, age, and cognition.
Methods: Brain MRIs in 23 individuals with attenuated (MPS IA) and 38 with severe MPS I (MPS IH), aged 4-25 years, enrolled under the study protocol NCT01870375, were compared to 98 healthy controls.
Results: Cortical and subcortical gray matter, white matter, corpus callosum, ventricular and choroid plexus volumes in MPS I significantly differed from HC. Thicker cortex, lower white matter and corpus callosum volumes were already present at the youngest MPS I participants aged 4-5 years. Age-related differences were observed in both MPS I groups, but most markedly in MPS IH, particularly in cortical gray matter metrics. IQ scores were inversely associated with ventricular volume in both MPS I groups and were positively associated with cortical thickness only in MPS IA.
Conclusions: Quantitatively-derived MRI measures distinguished MPS I participants from HC as well as severe from attenuated forms. Age-related neurodevelopmental trajectories in both MPS I forms differed from HC. The extent to which brain structure is altered by disease, potentially spared by treatment, and how it relates to neurocognitive dysfunction needs further exploration.
Keywords: Brain MRI; Cortex; Hurler Scheie syndrome; Mucopolysaccharidosis; Quantitative brain volumetry; Ventricle.
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