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In Journal of Alzheimer's disease : JAD

BACKGROUND : The widespread incidence and prevalence of Alzheimer's disease and mild cognitive impairment (MCI) has prompted an urgent call for research to validate early detection cognitive screening and assessment.

OBJECTIVE : Our primary research aim was to determine if selected MemTrax performance metrics and relevant demographics and health profile characteristics can be effectively utilized in predictive models developed with machine learning to classify cognitive health (normal versus MCI), as would be indicated by the Montreal Cognitive Assessment (MoCA).

METHODS : We conducted a cross-sectional study on 259 neurology, memory clinic, and internal medicine adult patients recruited from two hospitals in China. Each patient was given the Chinese-language MoCA and self-administered the continuous recognition MemTrax online episodic memory test on the same day. Predictive classification models were built using machine learning with 10-fold cross validation, and model performance was measured using Area Under the Receiver Operating Characteristic Curve (AUC). Models were built using two MemTrax performance metrics (percent correct, response time), along with the eight common demographic and personal history features.

RESULTS : Comparing the learners across selected combinations of MoCA scores and thresholds, Naïve Bayes was generally the top-performing learner with an overall classification performance of 0.9093. Further, among the top three learners, MemTrax-based classification performance overall was superior using just the top-ranked four features (0.9119) compared to using all 10 common features (0.8999).

CONCLUSION : MemTrax performance can be effectively utilized in a machine learning classification predictive model screening application for detecting early stage cognitive impairment.

Bergeron Michael F, Landset Sara, Zhou Xianbo, Ding Tao, Khoshgoftaar Taghi M, Zhao Feng, Du Bo, Chen Xinjie, Wang Xuan, Zhong Lianmei, Liu Xiaolei, Ashford J Wesson


Aging, Alzheimer’s disease, dementia, mass screening