Subtle Cognitive Deficits Are Associated with Amyloid-β Positivity, but Not Severity of Self-Reported Decline: Results from the CoSCo Study

Seon Young Ryu, Yun Jeong Hong, Seong Hee Ho, Jee Hyang Jeong, Kee Hyung Park, Sang Yun Kim, Min Jeong Wang, Seong Hye Choi, Dong Won Yang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Introduction: Subjective cognitive decline (SCD) can be considered as the preclinical manifestation of Alzheimer's disease (AD). The National Institute on Aging and the Alzheimer's Association criteria for preclinical AD proposed that subtle cognitive changes appear along with AD biomarkers in the late stage of preclinical AD. The objective of this study was to explore whether subtle cognitive impairment (SCI) in individuals with SCD is associated with brain amyloid-β (Aβ) status and SCD severity. Methods: One hundred twenty individuals with SCD (mean age: 70.87 ± 6.10 years) were included in this study. SCI was defined as performance ≤ -1.0 SD on at least two neuropsychological tests. Participants underwent an amyloid positron emission tomography, which was assessed visually and quantitatively using standardized uptake value ratio (SUVR). The severity of SCD was assessed using two self-reported questionnaires: the SCD questionnaire based on the SCD-plus features and the Korean-Everyday Cognition (K-ECog) scale. Results: SCD individuals with SCI (n = 25) had more Aβ positivity than the SCD only group (n = 95) (44% vs. 15.79%; p = 0.002). In addition, the SCI group had a higher global SUVR than the SCD only group (p = 0.048). For self-reported questionnaires, there were no differences in SCD questionnaire total scores and K-ECog global and cognitive domain-specific scores between two groups. Conclusions: In SCD individuals, SCI was associated with higher Aβ positivity, but not with the severity of self-reported cognitive decline, compared to the SCD only group. These results suggest that the recognition of objectively defined subtle cognitive deficits may contribute to the early identification of AD in SCD.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)159-167
Number of pages9
JournalDementia and Geriatric Cognitive Disorders
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1 Jun 2022

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This study was supported by a grant from the Ministry of Health and Welfare, HI18C0530. The funder had no role in study design; collection, analysis, and interpretation of data; writing of the report; and any restrictions regarding the submission of the report.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022


  • Alzheimer's disease
  • Amyloid-β
  • Subjective cognitive decline
  • Subtle cognitive impairment


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