A postmortem assessment of mammillary body volume, neuronal number and densities, and fornix volume in subjects with mood disorders
ABSTRACT Mammillary bodies are relay nuclei within limbic and extralimbic connections. Whereas other subcortical brain structures have been found to be altered in depression, no current information exists regarding the pathomorphology of mammillary bodies in affective disorders. We studied the postmortem brains of 19 human subjects with mood disorders (9 with major depressive disorder and 10 with bipolar I disorder) and 20 control individuals and assessed the mammillary body and fornix volumes, number of neurons and neuronal densities. We found that male control subjects have significantly larger mammillary bodies compared with females. In addition, control subjects of both sexes with the diagnosis/cause of death of "heart failure/insufficiency" had significantly smaller mammillary body volumes compared with non-psychiatric patients who died from other causes. When estimating the mammillary bodies volumes of patients with depression compared with control subjects, a significant reduction of the left mammillary body volume was found in patients with bipolar disorder, but not in patients with major depression. However, significant depression-associated mammillary body volume reductions were found between the control subjects who did not die of heart failure and patients with major depression and bipolar disorder. Moreover, the MB volumes of control subjects who died of heart failure were in the range exhibited by subjects with depression. There was no significant influence of suicidal behavior on mammillary volumes observed. Moreover, no significant group differences in the total neuronal number or neuronal density were found between the controls, subjects with major depression and subjects with bipolar disorder. Furthermore, the fornix volumes were significantly reduced only in the control subjects with heart failure. Taken together, these results show that the mammillary bodies are compromised in depression.
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ABSTRACT: Multiple brain structural abnormalities have been reported in schizophrenia and major depressive disorder. A majority of disease-affected brain regions act as relay nodes within neural networks, which are known to be impaired in neuropsychiatric diseases. One of these regions is the claustrum, which has the highest connectivity in the human brain by regional volume. Its possible involvement in disturbed connectivity is yet incompletely explored, however. The present study aimed at searching for possible structural deviations of the claustrum in neuropsychiatric disorders. We found bilaterally reduced claustral volumes both in schizophrenia and in major depressive disorder. These structural impairments may have different, disease-related consequences: In patients with schizophrenia, they may contribute to sensory processing impairments, and in patients with major depressive disorder to disturbances in salience.European Archives of Psychiatry and Clinical Neuroscience 03/2015; DOI:10.1007/s00406-015-0597-x · 3.36 Impact Factor
Conference Paper: Defining the human hypothalamus in vivo by ultra-high field 7 Tesla MRI57. Jahrestagung der Deutschen Gesellschaft für Klinische Neurophysiologie, Leipzig; 03/2013
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ABSTRACT: Patients with heart failure (HF) exhibit a wide range of symptoms, including dyspnea, sleep-disordered breathing, autonomic abnormalities, cognitive dysfunction, and neuropsychological disturbances. These symptoms, which affect quality of life and morbidity and mortality in the condition, are largely related to structural and functional changes in the brain. There are increasing reports of brain abnormalities in HF, but often the linkages between brain injury and common HF clinical symptomatology are not clearly described. In this review, we will discuss the current evidence of brain injury and the associated clinical symptoms in HF, focusing on those brain regions that are commonly damaged in the condition. We will also provide a brief exploration of some potential mechanisms for brain injury in HF.Current Heart Failure Reports 07/2014; DOI:10.1007/s11897-014-0211-y