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Indexed/Abstracted in: CAB, EMBASE, PubMed/MEDLINE, Science Citation Index Expanded (SciSearch), Scopus
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Cinzia GALASSO, Livia CASARELLI, Nadia EL MALHANY, Maria B. PITZIANTI, Simonetta SPIRIDIGLIOZZI, Paolo CURATOLO, Augusto PASINI
Department of System Medicine, Child Neurology and Psychiatry Unit, Tor Vergata University of Rome, Rome, Italy
BACKGROUND: Neurofibromatosis type 1 is a common neurogenetic disorder affecting nervous system, caused by germiline mutations of the NF1 gene. Although the clinical diagnosis of NF1 is defined by presence of cafe-au-laits spots, freckling and benign tumours (neurofibromatosis), neurocognitive impairment and neuropsychiatric disorders are reported in comorbidity. Children with NF1 show higher incidence of executive deficits, such attention, response inhibition, executive planning and problem solving, working memory, and learning impairment. In our study we examine the presence of neurological soft signs and planning function in subjects with NF1. The NSS are minor motor and sensory abnormalities without focal brain damage.
METHODS: Eleven drug naïve children between 7-15 years with clinical and molecular diagnosis of NF are matched to 11 healthy controls to ass the presence of neurological soft signs and planning executive functions. NSS were assessed using Physical and Neurological Examination for Subtle Signs and the Tower of London task is performance test to assess the capacity of planning, organization and execution of a work.
RESULTS: Our results revealed highest rate of NSS and planning deficit in children with NF1 compared to healthy controls.
CONCLUSIONS: The motor abnormalities and planning deficit are possible markers to confirm that NF1 could be considering a neurodevelopmental disorder.