Brain Imaging and Behavior

, Volume 8, Issue 1, pp 128–132

Warmer outdoor temperature is associated with task-related increased BOLD activation in patients with multiple sclerosis

  • Victoria M. Leavitt
  • Glenn Wylie
  • Nancy Chiaravalloti
  • John DeLuca
  • James F. Sumowski
Original Research

DOI: 10.1007/s11682-013-9267-7

Cite this article as:
Leavitt, V.M., Wylie, G., Chiaravalloti, N. et al. Brain Imaging and Behavior (2014) 8: 128. doi:10.1007/s11682-013-9267-7

Abstract

Patients with multiple sclerosis (MS) demonstrate worse cognition on warmer days. Here, we examine the neurophysiology underlying this temperature-cognition relationship. The association between task-related BOLD fMRI activation and outdoor temperature was investigated in 28 MS patients who demonstrated worse cognitive function on warmer days. In MS patients, warmer outdoor temperature was associated with greater BOLD activation during performance of a simple sustained attention task. The brain areas that showed greater activation on warmer days (p = .01) were regions that have been shown to be more activated by MS patients during task performance: frontal, dorsolateral prefrontal, and parietal cortex. The relationship between outdoor temperature and cerebral activation was absent in healthy controls. The purpose of this study was to identify the neurophysiological basis for worse cognition among MS patients on warmer days. We show here that MS patients activate task-related brain regions more on warmer days. Increased brain activation required by MS patients on warmer days to perform a simple task may signify neural inefficiency.

Keywords

Cognition Temperature Multiple sclerosis Memory Functional neuroimaging fMRI 

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Victoria M. Leavitt
    • 1
    • 2
    • 4
  • Glenn Wylie
    • 1
    • 2
  • Nancy Chiaravalloti
    • 1
    • 2
  • John DeLuca
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
  • James F. Sumowski
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Kessler Foundation Research CenterWest OrangeUSA
  2. 2.Department of Physical Medicine and RehabilitationRutgers—New Jersey Medical SchoolNewarkUSA
  3. 3.Department of Neurology and NeurosciencesRutgers—New Jersey Medical SchoolNewarkUSA
  4. 4.Neuropsychology & Neuroscience LaboratoryKessler Foundation Research CenterWest OrangeUSA

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