Dario Grossi

Professor of Neuropsychology

Name Dario
Surname Grossi
Institution Università degli Studi della Campania Luigi Vanvitelli
E-Mail dario.grossi@unicampania.it
Address Villa Camaldoli Foundation Clinic, Naples, Italy; Department of Psychology, University of Campania "Luigi Vanvitelli", Napoli, Italy
Dario Grossi


  • The Closing-In Phenomenon in an Ecological Walking Task.

    Publication Date: 04/12/2017 on Journal of the International Neuropsychological Society : JINS
    by De Lucia N, Grossi D, Milan G, Trojano L
    DOI: 10.1017/S1355617717001229

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) patients may show the Closing-in (CI), a tendency to reproduce figures close to or superimposed on the model. AD patients with CI might manifest reduced functional independence compared to AD patients without CI, but no study directly assessed if CI can hamper common daily living activities. To address this issue here we investigated whether AD patients with CI veer their walking trajectory toward irrelevant objects more often than AD patients without CI.

  • Whose hand is this? Differential responses of right and left extrastriate body areas to visual images of self and others' hands.

    Publication Date: 23/05/2017 on Cognitive, affective & behavioral neuroscience
    by De Bellis F, Trojano L, Errico D, Grossi D, Conson M
    DOI: 10.3758/s13415-017-0514-z

    The extrastriate body area (EBA) is involved in perception of human bodies and nonfacial body parts, but its role in representing body identity is not clear. Here, we used on-line high-frequency repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) to test the role of EBA in self-other distinction. In Experiments 1 and 2 we compared rTMS of right EBA with stimulation of left ventral premotor cortex (vPM), whereas in Experiment 3 we compared stimulation of right and left EBA. RTMS was applied during a hand laterality task in which self or others' hand images were presented in first- versus third-person view (Experiments 1 and 3), or while participants had to explicitly recognize their own hands (Experiment 2) presented in first- versus third-person view. Experiment 1 showed that right EBA stimulation selectively speeded judgments on others' hands, whereas no effect of left vPM stimulation was found. Experiment 2 did not reveal any effect of rTMS. Experiment 3 confirmed faster responses on others' hands while stimulating right EBA and also showed an advantage when judging self with respect to others' hands during stimulation of left EBA. These results would demonstrate that EBA responds to morphological features of human body contributing to identity processing.

  • GRN deletion in familial frontotemporal dementia showing association with clinical variability in 3 familial cases.

    Publication Date: 01/05/2017 on Neurobiology of aging
    by Milan G, Napoletano S, Pappatà S, Gentile MT, Colucci-D'Amato L, Della Rocca G, Maciag A, Rossetti CP, Fucci L, Puca A, Grossi D, Postiglione A, Vitale E
    DOI: 10.1016/j.neurobiolaging.2016.12.030

    Progranulin (GRN) gene mutations have been genetically associated with frontotemporal dementia (FTD) and are present in about 23% of patients with familial FTD. However, the neurobiology of this secreted glycoprotein remains unclear. Here, we report the identification of 3 pedigrees of Southern Italian extraction in whom FTD segregates with autosomal dominant inheritance patterns. We present evidence that all the available patients in these 3 familial cases are carrying the rare GRN gene exon 6 deletion g10325_10331delCTGCTGT (relative to nt 1 inNG_007886.1), alias Cys157LysfsX97. This mutation was previously described in 2 sporadic cases but was never associated with familial cases. Our patients demonstrate heterogeneous clinical phenotypes, such as the behavioral variant (bvFTD) in the affected men and the nonfluent/agrammatic variant of primary progressive aphasia (nfvPPA) in the affected woman. Haploinsufficiency was revealed by both quantitative real-time PCR of the gene and protein analyses. These findings provide further support for a previously proposed role for the GRN gene in the genetic etiology of FTD and its phenotypic variability.

  • Neuropsychological Correlates of Theory of Mind Deficits in Patients With Multiple Sclerosis.

    Publication Date: 13/04/2017 on Neuropsychology
    by Raimo S, Trojano L, Pappacena S, Alaia R, Spitaleri D, Grossi D, Santangelo G
    DOI: 10.1037/neu0000372

    Theory of mind (ToM) is the ability to understand and interpret another person's beliefs, intentions (cognitive ToM) and emotions (affective ToM).

  • Corrigendum to "Altered functional connectivity of interoception in illness anxiety disorder" [Cortex 86 (2017) 22-32].

    Publication Date: 22/03/2017 on Cortex; a journal devoted to the study of the nervous system and behavior
    by Grossi D, Longarzo M, Quarantelli M, Salvatore E, Cavaliere C, De Luca P, Trojano L, Aiello M
    DOI: 10.1016/j.cortex.2017.03.001
  • Assessment of apathy independent of physical disability: validation of the Dimensional Apathy Scale in Italian healthy sample.

    Publication Date: 01/02/2017 on Neurological sciences : official journal of the Italian Neurological Society and of the Italian Society of Clinical Neurophysiology
    by Santangelo G, Raimo S, Siciliano M, D'Iorio A, Piscopo F, Cuoco S, Bottone M, Trojsi F, Grossi D, Trojano L
    DOI: 10.1007/s10072-016-2766-8

    Apathy is well described in neurodegenerative diseases characterized by motor disability; therefore, assessment of apathy avoiding possible confounding effects of motor impairments is necessary in neurological diseases. Recently, the Dimensional Apathy Scale (DAS) was developed to assess apathy as multifaceted construct, independent of physical disability. We developed the Italian version of the Dimensional Apathy Scale (I-DAS) and explored its psychometric properties in a sample of 309 healthy individuals. Participants also completed Apathy Evaluation Scale, Beck Depression Inventory-II and Addenbrooke's Cognitive Examination-Revised. The I-DAS showed high internal consistency, good convergent and divergent validity. The I-DAS had a three-factor structure, such as the original scale. The I-DAS scored was significantly correlated with individuals' education, but not with age or gender. We, therefore, computed correction factor for education and provided percentile distribution of the adjusted scores to identify individuals with high levels of apathy. The I-DAS showed good psychometric properties and can be a valid and reliable tool to assess multidimensional apathy.

  • Exploring visuospatial abilities and their contribution to constructional abilities and nonverbal intelligence.

    Publication Date: 09/01/2017 on Applied neuropsychology. Adult
    by Trojano L, Siciliano M, Cristinzio C, Grossi D
    DOI: 10.1080/23279095.2016.1269009

    The present study aimed at exploring relationships among the visuospatial tasks included in the Battery for Visuospatial Abilities (BVA), and at assessing the relative contribution of different facets of visuospatial processing on tests tapping constructional abilities and nonverbal abstract reasoning. One hundred forty-four healthy subjects with a normal score on Mini Mental State Examination completed the BVA plus Raven's Coloured Progressive Matrices and Constructional Apraxia test. We used Principal Axis Factoring and Parallel Analysis to investigate relationships among the BVA visuospatial tasks, and performed regression analyses to assess the visuospatial contribution to constructional abilities and nonverbal abstract reasoning. Principal Axis Factoring and Parallel Analysis revealed two eigenvalues exceeding 1, accounting for about 60% of the variance. A 2-factor model provided the best fit. Factor 1 included sub-tests exploring "complex" visuospatial skills, whereas Factor 2 included two subtests tapping "simple" visuospatial skills. Regression analyses revealed that both Factor 1 and Factor 2 significantly affected performance on Raven's Coloured Progressive Matrices, whereas only the Factor 1 affected performance on Constructional Apraxia test. Our results supported functional segregation proposed by De Renzi, suggesting clinical caution to utilize a single test to assess visuospatial domain, and qualified the visuospatial contribution in drawing and non-verbal intelligence test.

  • Altered functional connectivity of interoception in illness anxiety disorder.

    Publication Date: 01/01/2017 on Cortex; a journal devoted to the study of the nervous system and behavior
    by Grossi D, Longarzo M, Quarantelli M, Salvatore E, Cavaliere C, De Luca P, Trojano L, Aiello M
    DOI: 10.1016/j.cortex.2016.10.018

    Interoception collects all information coming from the body and is sustained by several brain areas such as insula and cingulate cortex. Here, we used resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging to investigate functional connectivity (FC) of networks implied in interoception in patients with Illness anxiety disorders (IADs). We observed significantly reduced FC between the left extrastriate body area (EBA) and the paracentral lobule compared to healthy controls. Moreover, the correlation analysis between behavioural questionnaires and ROI to ROI FC showed that higher levels of illness anxiety were related to hyper-connectivity between EBA and amygdala and hippocampus. Scores on a questionnaire for interoceptive awareness were significantly correlated with higher FC between right hippocampus and nucleus accumbens bilaterally, and with higher connectivity between left anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) and left orbitofrontal cortex (OFC). Last, patients showed increased interoceptive awareness, measured by Self-Awareness Questionnaire (SAQ), and reduced capability in recognizing emotions, indicating inverse correlation between interoception and emotional awareness. Taken together our results suggested that, in absence of structural and micro-structural changes, patients with IADs show functional alteration in the neural network involved in the self-body representation; such functional alteration might be the target of possible treatments.

  • Closing-in is Related to Daily Living Functioning in Patients With Mild-to-Moderate Alzheimer Disease.

    Publication Date: 04/11/2016 on Alzheimer disease and associated disorders
    by De Lucia N, Grossi D, Trojano L
    DOI: 10.1097/WAD.0000000000000165
  • The influence of interoceptive awareness on functional connectivity in patients with irritable bowel syndrome.

    Publication Date: 04/10/2016 on Brain imaging and behavior
    by Longarzo M, Quarantelli M, Aiello M, Romano M, Del Prete A, Cimminiello C, Cocozza S, Olivo G, Loguercio C, Trojano L, Grossi D
    DOI: 10.1007/s11682-016-9595-5

    Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is characterized by visceral hypersensitivity likely related to altered processing of sensory stimuli along the brain-gut axis. Previous neuroimaging studies demonstrated structural and functional alteration of several brain areas involved in bodily representation, e.g. the insula, in patients with IBS. By means of resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (rs-fMRI) we searched for alteration of functional connectivity within the network involved in self-bodily consciousness. We found significant inverse correlation between hypochondriasis assessed through a clinical questionnaire and connectivity between posterior cingulate cortex and left supramarginal gyrus, extending into the adjacent superior temporal gyrus. Moreover, we observed a significant and positive correlation between a clinical questionnaire assessing interoception and connectivity between left anterior ventral insula and two clusters located in supramarginal gyrus bilaterally.Our findings highlight an "abnormal network synchrony" reflecting functional alteration, in the absence of structural and micro-structural changes, which might represent a possible therapeutic target for Irritable Bowel Syndrome.