Cingulum and Uncinate Fasciculus Microstructural Abnormalities in Parkinson’s Disease: A Systematic Review of Diffusion Tensor Imaging Studies

Fatemeh Rashidi, Mohammad Hossein Khanmirzaei, Farbod Hosseinzadeh, Zahra Kolahchi, Niloofar Jafarimehrabady, Bardia Moghisseh, Mohammad Hadi Aarabi

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) is gaining traction in neuroscience research as a tool for evaluating neural fibers. The technique can be used to assess white matter (WM) microstructure in neurodegenerative disorders, including Parkinson disease (PD). There is evidence that the uncinate fasciculus and the cingulum bundle are involved in the pathogenesis of PD. These fasciculus and bundle alterations correlate with the symptoms and stages of PD. PRISMA 2022 was used to search PubMed and Scopus for relevant articles. Our search revealed 759 articles. Following screening of titles and abstracts, a full-text review, and implementing the inclusion criteria, 62 papers were selected for synthesis. According to the review of selected studies, WM integrity in the uncinate fasciculus and cingulum bundles can vary according to symptoms and stages of Parkinson disease. This article provides structural insight into the heterogeneous PD subtypes according to their cingulate bundle and uncinate fasciculus changes. It also examines if there is any correlation between these brain structures’ structural changes with cognitive impairment or depression scales like Geriatric Depression Scale-Short (GDS). The results showed significantly lower fractional anisotropy values in the cingulum bundle compared to healthy controls as well as significant correlations between FA and GDS scores for both left and right uncinate fasciculus regions suggesting that structural damage from disease progression may be linked to cognitive impairments seen in advanced PD patients. This review help in developing more targeted treatments for different types of Parkinson’s disease, as well as providing a better understanding of how cognitive impairments may be related to these structural changes. Additionally, using DTI scans can provide clinicians with valuable information about white matter tracts which is useful for diagnosing and monitoring disease progression over time.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number475
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2023
Externally publishedYes


  • Parkinson disease (PD)
  • cingulum
  • diffusion tensor imaging (DTI)
  • motor symptoms
  • non-motor symptoms
  • uncinate fasciculus

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology
  • General Immunology and Microbiology
  • General Agricultural and Biological Sciences


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