The entorhinal cortex is subdivided into anterolateral entorhinal cortex (alERC) and posteromedial entorhinal cortex (pmERC) subregions, which are theorized to support distinct cognitive roles. This distinction is particularly important as the alERC is one of the earliest cortical regions affected by Alzheimer’s pathology and related neurodegeneration. The relative associations of alERC/pmERC with neuropsychological test performance have not been examined. We examined how alERC/pmERC volumes differentially relate to performance on 1) the Modified Rey Auditory Learning Test (ModRey), a verbal memory test designed to assess normal/preclinical populations, 2) the Montreal Cognitive Assessment (MoCA), and 3) the National Alzheimer’s Coordinating Center neuropsychological battery. We also examined whether alERC/pmERC volumes correlate with Alzheimer’s disease cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) biomarkers. In 65 cognitively healthy (CDR = 0) older adults, alERC, but not pmERC, volume was associated with ModRey memory retention. Only alERC volume differentiated between participants who scored above and below the MoCA cutoff score for impairment. Evaluating the MoCA subdomains revealed that alERC was particularly associated with verbal recall. On the National Alzheimer’s Coordinating Center battery, both alERC and pmERC volumes were associated with Craft story recall and Benson figure copy, but only alERC volume was associated with Craft story retention and semantic fluency. Neither alERC nor pmERC volume correlated with CSF levels of amyloid or tau, and regression analyses showed that alERC volume and CSF amyloid levels were independently associated with ModRey retention performance. Taken together, these results suggest that the alERC is important for memory performance and that alERC volume differences are related to a pattern of neuropsychological test performance (i.e., impairments in episodic memory and semantic fluency) typically seen in clinical Alzheimer’s disease.
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