Validity and Value of metabolic connectivity in AD mouse models
The goal of the current work was to analyze and validate metabolic regional network alterations in three different AD mouse models (β-amyloid and tau) by use of 2-deoxy-2-[18F]fluoro-d-glucose positron emission tomography (FDG-PET) imaging. We compared the results of FDG-µPET MC with conventional VOI-based analysis and behavioral assessment in the Morris water maze (MWM). MC proved to be an accurate and robust indicator of functional connectivity loss in AD mouse models when sample sizes ≥12 are considered. MC loss was observed throughout all brain regions in tauopathy mice, whereas β-amyloid indicated MC loss mainly in spatial learning areas and subcortical networks. This study established a methodological basis for the utilization of MC in different mouse models of AD. MC has the potential to serve as a read-out of pathological changes within neuronal networks in AD models.