An exploratory study of the relationship between face recognition memory and the volume of medial temporal lobe structures in healthy young males.
ABSTRACT A rigorous new methodology was applied to the study of structure function relationships in the living human brain. Face recognition memory (FRM) and other cognitive measures were made in 29 healthy young male subjects (mean age = 21.7 years) and related to volumetric measurements of their cerebral hemispheres and of structures in their medial temporal lobes, obtained using the Cavalieri method in combination with high resolution Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI. Greatest proportional variability in volumes was found for the lateral ventricles (57%) for the cerebral hemispheres (8%) in the mean volumes of the hippocampus, parahippocampal gyrus, amygdala, caudate nucleus, temporal pole and temporal lobe on the right and left sides of the brain. The volumes of the right and left parahippocampal gyrus, temporal pole, temporal lobe, and left hippocampus were, prior to application of the Bonferroni correction to take account of 12 multiple comparisons, significantly correlated with the volume of the corresponding hemisphere(p < 0.05). The volumes of all structures were highly correlated (p < 0.0002 for all comparisons) between the two cerebral hemispheres. There were no positive relationships between structure volumes and FRM score. However, the volume of the right amygdala was, prior to application of the Bonferroni correction to take account of 38~multiple comparisons, found to be significantly smaller in the five most consistent high scorers compared to the five most consistent low scorers (t = 2.77,p = 0.025). The implications for possible relationships between healthy medial temporal lobe structures and memory are discussed.
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ABSTRACT: Freely available automated MR image analysis techniques are being increasingly used to investigate neuroanatomical abnormalities in patients with neurological disorders. It is important to assess the specificity and validity of automated measurements of structure volumes with respect to reliable manual methods that rely on human anatomical expertise. The thalamus is widely investigated in many neurological and neuropsychiatric disorders using MRI, but thalamic volumes are notoriously difficult to quantify given the poor between-tissue contrast at the thalamic gray-white matter interface. In the present study we investigated the reliability of automatically determined thalamic volume measurements obtained using FreeSurfer software with respect to a manual stereological technique on 3D T1-weighted MR images obtained from a 3 T MR system. Further to demonstrating impressive consistency between stereological and FreeSurfer volume estimates of the thalamus in healthy subjects and neurological patients, we demonstrate that the extent of agreeability between stereology and FreeSurfer is equal to the agreeability between two human anatomists estimating thalamic volume using stereological methods. Using patients with juvenile myoclonic epilepsy as a model for thalamic atrophy, we also show that both automated and manual methods provide very similar ratios of thalamic volume loss in patients. This work promotes the use of FreeSurfer for reliable estimation of global volume in healthy and diseased thalami.Neuroinformatics 04/2012; 10(4):341-50. · 3.14 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: It has long been suspected that cortical interhemispheric asymmetries may underlie hemispheric language dominance (HLD). To test this hypothesis, we determined interhemispheric asymmetries using stereology and MRI of three cortical regions hypothesized to be related to HLD (Broca's area, planum temporale, and insula) in healthy adults in whom HLD was determined using functional transcranial Doppler sonography and functional MRI (15 left HLD, 10 right HLD). We observed no relationship between volume asymmetry of the gyral correlates of Broca's area or planum temporale and HLD. However, we observed a robust relationship between volume asymmetry of the insula and HLD (p = .008), which predicted unilateral HLD in 88% individuals (86.7% left HDL and 90% right HLD). There was also a subtle but significant positive correlation between the extent of HLD and insula volume asymmetry (p = .02), indicating that a larger insula predicted functional lateralization to the same hemispheric side for the majority of subjects. We found no visual evidence of basic anatomical markers of HLD other than that the termination of the right posterior sylvian fissure was more likely to be vertical than horizontal in right HLD subjects (p = .02). Predicting HLD by virtue of gross brain anatomy is complicated by interindividual variability in sulcal contours, and the possibility remains that morphological and cytoarchitectural organization of the classical language regions may underlie HLD when analyses are not constrained by the natural limits imposed by measurement of gyral volume. Although the anatomical correlates of HLD will most likely be found to include complex intra- and interhemispheric connections, there is the possibility that such connectivity may correlate with gray matter morphology. We suggest that the potential significance of insular morphology should be considered in future studies addressing the anatomical correlates of human language lateralization.Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience 08/2011; 23(8):2013-29. · 4.49 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Volumetric studies have reported relatively decreased cortical thickness and gray matter volumes in adults with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) whose childhood status was retrospectively recalled. We present, to our knowledge, the first prospective study combining cortical thickness and voxel-based morphometry in adults diagnosed as having ADHD in childhood. To test whether adults with combined-type childhood ADHD exhibit cortical thinning and decreased gray matter in regions hypothesized to be related to ADHD and to test whether anatomic differences are associated with a current ADHD diagnosis, including persistent vs remitting ADHD. Cross-sectional analysis embedded in a 33-year prospective follow-up at a mean age of 41.2 years. Research outpatient center. We recruited probands with ADHD from a cohort of 207 white boys aged 6 to 12 years. Male comparison participants (n = 178) were free of ADHD in childhood. We obtained magnetic resonance images in 59 probands and 80 comparison participants (28.5% and 44.9% of the original samples, respectively). Whole-brain voxel-based morphometry and vertexwise cortical thickness analyses. The cortex was significantly thinner in ADHD probands than in comparison participants in the dorsal attentional network and limbic areas (false discovery rate < 0.05, corrected). In addition, gray matter was significantly decreased in probands in the right caudate, right thalamus, and bilateral cerebellar hemispheres. Probands with persistent ADHD (n = 17) did not differ significantly from those with remitting ADHD (n = 26) (false discovery rate < 0.05). At uncorrected P < .05, individuals with remitting ADHD had thicker cortex relative to those with persistent ADHD in the medial occipital cortex, insula, parahippocampus, and prefrontal regions. Anatomic gray matter reductions are observable in adults with childhood ADHD, regardless of the current diagnosis. The most affected regions underpin top-down control of attention and regulation of emotion and motivation. Exploratory analyses suggest that diagnostic remission may result from compensatory maturation of prefrontal, cerebellar, and thalamic circuitry.Archives of general psychiatry 11/2011; 68(11):1122-34. · 12.26 Impact Factor