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Supplementary Material for: Plasma Oxytocin Is Not Associated with Social Cognition or Behavior in Frontotemporal Dementia and Alzheimer’s Disease Syndromes

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posted on 15.06.2022, 05:42 authored by Johnson E.G., Kuiper W., Ahmed R.M., Halliday G.M., Burrell J.R., Hodges J.R., Guastella A.J., Piguet O., Kumfor F.
Introduction: Changes in social behavior and emotion processing are common in frontotemporal dementia (FTD) and semantic dementia (SD), and less so in Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Recent research has investigated oxytocin as a potential treatment for these symptoms; however, whether plasma oxytocin is associated with social-emotional symptoms of dementia remains underexplored. Methods: Thirty behavioral-variant FTD (bvFTD), 28 SD, 39 AD, and 24 controls underwent blood sampling to measure oxytocin. Participants completed an emotion processing battery. Carers completed the Cambridge Behavioral Inventory and the Neuropsychiatric Inventory. Results: Patients with bvFTD were severely impaired in emotion processing and behavioral ratings, with milder impairment in SD and AD. No difference in plasma oxytocin was observed between groups (p = 0.632). No significant associations were found between oxytocin and social behavior or emotion processing (r values between −0.241 and 0.227, all p values >0.099). Conclusion: Our results indicate that plasma oxytocin is not reduced in dementia and is unrelated to social, emotional, and behavioral features. We noted high interindividual variability in our data; hence, future investigations should consider methodological influences such as serum versus saliva and diurnal variation on oxytocin function. These results demonstrate that current measurement measures of plasma oxytocin have limited utility in determining the role of oxytocin in FTD. Alternative oxytocin measures may prove more sensitive and should be considered when conducting clinical trials.