Deficits in copying ("constructional apraxia") is generally defined as a multifaceted deficit. The exact neural correlates of the different types of copying errors are unknown. To assess whether the different categories of errors on the pentagon drawing relate to different neural correlates, we examined the pentagon drawings of the MMSE in persons with subjective cognitive complaints, mild cognitive impairment, or early dementia due to Alzheimer's disease. We adopted a qualitative scoring method for the pentagon copy test (QSPT) which categorizes different possible errors in copying rather than the dichotomous categories "correct" or "incorrect." We correlated (regional) gray matter volumes with performance on the different categories of the QSPT. Results showed that the total score of the QSPT was specifically associated with parietal gray matter volume and not with frontal, temporal, and occipital gray matter volume. A more fine-grained analysis of the errors reveals that the intersection score and the number of angles share their underlying neural correlates and are associated with specific subregions of the parietal cortex. These results are in line with the idea that constructional apraxia can be attributed to the failure to integrate visual information correctly from one fixation to the next, a process called spatial remapping.

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Journal Dementia and Geriatric Cognitive Disorders
van der Stigchel, S, de Bresser, J, Heinen, R. (Rutger), Koek, H.L, Reijmer, Y.D, Biessels, G.J, & van den Berg, E. (2018). Parietal Involvement in Constructional Apraxia as Measured Using the Pentagon Copying Task. Dementia and Geriatric Cognitive Disorders, 50–59. doi:10.1159/000491634