Deficits in short-term memory binding are detectable in individuals with brain amyloid deposition in the absence of overt neurodegeneration in the Alzheimer's disease continuum

Mario Amore Cecchini, Monica Sanches Yassuda, Paula Squarzoni, Artur Martins Coutinho, Daniele de Paula Faria, Fábio Luiz de Souza Duran, Naomi Antunes da Costa, Fábio Henrique de Gobbi Porto, Ricardo Nitrini, Orestes Vicente Forlenza, Sonia Maria Dozzi Brucki, Carlos Alberto Buchpiguel, Mario Parra Rodriguez, Geraldo Busatto

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The short-term memory binding (STMB) test involves the ability to hold in memory the integration between surface features, such as shapes and colours. The STMB test has been used to detect Alzheimer’s disease (AD) at different stages, from preclinical to dementia, showing promising results. The objective of the present study was to verify whether the STMB test could differentiate patients with distinct biomarker profiles in the AD continuum. The sample comprised 18 cognitively unimpaired (CU) participants, 30 mild cognitive impairment (MCI) and 23 AD patients. All participants underwent positron emission tomography (PET) with Pittsburgh compound-B labelled with carbon-11 ([11C]PIB) assessing amyloid beta (Aβ) aggregation (A) and 18fluorine-fluorodeoxyglucose ([18F]FDG)-PET assessing neurodegeneration (N) (A-N- [n = 35]); A+N- [n = 11]; A+N+ [n = 19]). Participants who were negative and positive for amyloid deposition were compared in the absence (A-N- vs. A+N-) of neurodegeneration. When compared with the RAVLT and SKT memory tests, the STMB was the only cognitive task that differentiated these groups, predicting the group outcome in logistic regression analyses. The STMB test showed to be sensitive to the signs of AD pathology and may represent a cognitive marker within the AD continuum.
Original languageEnglish
JournalBrain and Cognition
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 6 May 2021


  • Alzheimer disease
  • short-term memory binding
  • PET
  • biomarkers
  • amyloid
  • mild cognitive impairment
  • Short Term Memory Binding Test
  • neurodegeneration

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