Default Mode Network Analysis of APOE Genotype in Cognitively Unimpaired Subjects Based on Persistent Homology
Liqun Kuang, Jiaying Jia, Deyu Zhao, Fengguang Xiong, Xie Han, Yalin Wang and for the Alzheimer’s Disease Neuroimaging Initiative
Current researches on default mode network (DMN) in normal elderly have mainly focused on finding some dysfunctional areas with decreased or increased connectivity. The global network dynamics of apolipoprotein E (APOE) e4 allele group is rarely studied. In our previous brain network study, we have demonstrated the advantage of persistent homology. It can distinguish robust and noisy topological features over multiscale nested networks, and the derived properties are more stable. In this study, for the first time we applied persistent homology to analyze APOE-related effects on whole-brain functional network. In our experiments, the risk allele group exhibited lower network radius and modularity in whole brain DMN based on graph theory, suggesting the abnormal organization structure. Moreover, two suggested measures from persistent homology detected significant differences between groups within the left hemisphere and in the whole brain in two datasets. They were more statistically sensitive to APOE genotypic differences than standard graph-based measures. In summary, we provide evidence that the e4 genotype leads to distinct DMN functional alterations in the early phases of Alzheimer’s disease using persistent homology approach. Our study offers a novel insight to explore potential biomarkers in healthy elderly populations carrying APOE e4 allele.