Behavioural Variant Frontotemporal Dementia due to CCNF Gene Mutation: A Case Report

Curr Alzheimer Res. 2023;20(5):371-378. doi: 10.2174/1567205020666230811092906.


Background: Frontal, temporal lobe dementia (FTD) and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) are fatal neurodegenerative diseases. Studies have found that CCNF mutations have been found in patients with familial and sporadic ALS and FTD. Behavioural variant frontotemporal dementia (bvFTD) is a clinical syndrome characterized by progressive deterioration of personality, social behaviour, and cognitive function, which is most closely related to genetic factors. As the early symptoms of bvFTD are highly heterogeneous, the condition is often misdiagnosed as Alzheimer's disease or psychiatric disorders. In this study, a bvFTD patient had a CCNF gene mutation, which led to ubiquitinated protein accumulation and ultimately caused neurodegenerative disease. Genetic detection should be improved urgently for bvFTD patients and family members to provide a clinical reference for early diagnosis of frontotemporal dementia.

Case presentation: In this case, the patient was 65 years old with an insidious onset, early-onset memory loss, a significant decline in the episodic memory, an early AD diagnosis, and oral treatment with donepezil hydrochloride for 3 years with poor efficacy, followed by a change to oral memantine hydrochloride tablets, which controlled the condition for several months. His medication was switched to sodium oligomannate capsules, and his condition was gradually controlled, but no significant improvement was observed. After spontaneous drug withdrawal, the patient's condition progressed rapidly; therefore, he visited our hospital and underwent neuropsychological tests for moderate to severe cognitive impairment. AD cerebrospinal fluid markers showed no significant abnormalities, and cranial MRI revealed frontotemporal lobe atrophy and decreased hippocampal volume. Genetic testing for the presence of the CCNF gene revealed a c.1532C > A (p. T511N) heterozygous variant, which might be a diagnostic criterion for bvFTD. Therefore, the patient's symptoms recurred after transient improvement with the combination of donepezil, oral memantine hydrochloride tablets, and sodium oligomannate, but his overall condition was improved compared to that before, and this treatment regimen was continued to observe changes during the follow-up.

Conclusion: The early clinical manifestations of bvFTD are complex and variable, and the condition is easily misdiagnosed, thus delaying treatment. Therefore, for patients with a high clinical suspicion of FTD, in addition to a detailed understanding of their medical history and family history and improvement of relevant examinations, genetic testing should be performed as early as possible to help confirm the diagnosis. For diseases closely related to genes, genetic testing of other family members should be optimised as much as possible to allow early diagnosis and intervention and guide fertility in the next generation.

Keywords: Behavioural variant; CCNF gene; FTD; amyotrophic lateral sclerosis; case report; frontotemporal dementia.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis* / diagnosis
  • Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis* / genetics
  • Cyclins / genetics
  • Frontotemporal Dementia* / diagnosis
  • Frontotemporal Dementia* / genetics
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Memantine / therapeutic use
  • Mutation / genetics
  • Neurodegenerative Diseases*
  • Neuropsychological Tests
  • Sodium


  • Memantine
  • Sodium
  • CCNF protein, human
  • Cyclins