Identical twins with probable alzheimer’s disease: Behavior, anatomy, and physiology

Susan M. Resnick, Gary L. Gottlieb, Raquel E. Gur, Ruben C. Gur, Mary Ann Forciea, Robert A. Zimmerman, Barbara Malamut, Andrew J. Saykin, Martin Reivich, Abass Alavi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

5 Scopus citations


Sixty-six-year-old male monozygotic (MZ) twins with probable Alzheimer's disease (AD) were evaluated with standard neuropsychological and psychiatric procedures. Brain anatomy was assessed by x-ray computed tomography (CT) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), and local cerebral glucose metabolism was determined by positron emission tomography (PET). Both patients had a 2-3 year history of impaired functioning. However, Twin A was more impaired clinically and showed greater atrophy on CT and MRI scans. Neuropsychological, both twins had deficits in memory and abstract reasoning, with less impairment in verbal abilities. Twin A was more impaired overall, with bilateral deficits in tactile functions and a left hemi-inattention. Twin B exhibited right-sided sensorimotor deficits. Both twins had decreased metabolic rates and differences in regional metabolism paralleled patterns of behavioral deficits. These findings highlight the utility of using MZ twins to examine functional and structural concomitants of disease against an identical genetic background.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)61-72
Number of pages12
JournalNeuropsychiatry, Neuropsychology and Behavioral Neurology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 1988
Externally publishedYes


  • Alzheimer's disease
  • Monozygotic twins

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychology(all)
  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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    Resnick, S. M., Gottlieb, G. L., Gur, R. E., Gur, R. C., Forciea, M. A., Zimmerman, R. A., Malamut, B., Saykin, A. J., Reivich, M., & Alavi, A. (1988). Identical twins with probable alzheimer’s disease: Behavior, anatomy, and physiology. Neuropsychiatry, Neuropsychology and Behavioral Neurology, 1(1), 61-72.