Anterior limb of the internal capsule in schizophrenia: A diffusion tensor tractography study

Psychiatry Neuroimaging Laboratory, Department of Psychiatry and Radiology, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, 1249 Boylston Street, Boston, MA 02215, USA.
Brain Imaging and Behavior (Impact Factor: 4.6). 03/2012; 6(3):417-25. DOI: 10.1007/s11682-012-9152-9
Source: PubMed


Thalamo-cortical feedback loops play a key role in the processing and coordination of processing and integration of perceptual inputs and outputs, and disruption in this connection has long been hypothesized to contribute significantly to neuropsychological disturbances in schizophrenia. To test this hypothesis, we applied diffusion tensor tractography to 18 patients suffering schizophrenia and 20 control subjects. Fractional anisotropy (FA) was evaluated in the bilateral anterior and posterior limbs of the internal capsule, and correlated with clinical and neurocognitive measures. Patients diagnosed with schizophrenia showed significantly reduced FA bilaterally in the anterior but not the posterior limb of the internal capsule, compared with healthy control subjects. Lower FA correlated with lower scores on tests of declarative episodic memory in the patient group only. These findings suggest that disruptions, bilaterally, in thalamo-cortical connections in schizophrenia may contribute to disease-related impairment in the coordination of mnemonic processes of encoding and retrieval that are vital for efficient learning of new information.

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Available from: Martha E Shenton, Dec 19, 2013
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    • "White matter abnormalities in the anterior thalamic radiation have not been previously shown in CD, but are consistently identified correlates of schizophrenia and bipolar disorder (Sussmann et al., 2009; Mamah et al., 2010). White matter abnormalities in the cerebrospinal tract/ALIC have not previously been linked to CD, but are associated with depression and schizophrenia (Rosenberger et al., 2012; Zhang et al., 2013). It is now clear that the cerebellum plays a role in the modulation of cognitive , emotional, and social processes, and an intact cerebellar vermis is essential for providing neocortical regulation of the limbic system (Villanueva, 2012). "
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    Psychiatry Research: Neuroimaging 07/2015; DOI:10.1016/j.pscychresns.2015.07.009 · 2.42 Impact Factor
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    • "Internal capsule VBM Kubicki et al., 2005; Buchsbaum et al., 2006; Munoz Maniega et al., 2008; Skelly et al., 2008; Sussmann et al., 2009; Nakamura et al., 2012; Levitt et al., 2012 Tractography Oh et al., 2009; Rosenberger et al., 2012 TBSS Seal et al., 2008; Knochel et al., 2012 Cortico-spinal tract TBSS Knochel et al., 2012 Tractography de Weijer et al., 2011 Corona radiata VBM Cui et al., 2011 TBSS Fujino et al., 2014 Middle cerebellar peduncles VBM Okugawa et al., 2004 tracts being affected, there is more likely an array of subtly altered networks distributed throughout the brain. Nevertheless, it could also be argued that the data suggest that the connectivity of frontal regions is particularly affected. "
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    ABSTRACT: In patients with schizophrenia neuroimaging studies have revealed global differences with some brain regions showing focal abnormalities. Examining neurocircuitry, diffusion-weighted imaging studies have identified altered structural integrity of white matter in frontal and temporal brain regions and tracts such as the cingulum bundles, uncinate fasciculi, internal capsules and corpus callosum associated with the illness. Furthermore, structural co-variance analyses have revealed altered structural relationships among regional morphology in the thalamus, frontal, temporal and parietal cortices in schizophrenia patients. The distributed nature of these abnormalities in schizophrenia suggests that multiple brain circuits are impaired, a neural feature that may be better addressed with network level analyses. However, even with the advent of these newer analyses, a large amount of variability in findings remains, likely partially due to the considerable heterogeneity present in this disorder.
    Frontiers in Human Neuroscience 08/2014; 8:653. DOI:10.3389/fnhum.2014.00653 · 3.63 Impact Factor
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    • "Diffusion Tensor Imaging studies have identified reduced fractional anisotropy in a number of regions and tracts in schizophrenia [2,5,8,27]. These include the corpus callosum [2,5,28-38], Anterior Limb of the Internal Capsule regions [5,28,33,35,38-41], corona radiata [28,35], cingulum bundle [2,5,33,35,38,42,43], inferior fronto-occipital fasciculus (IFOF) [5,28,33,44], superior fronto-occipital fasciculus (SFOF) [28,33], uncinate fasciculus [2,33,38,42,43], fornix [5,28,33,43], superior longitudinal fasciculus (SLF) [2,28,34,35,38], inferior longitudinal fasciculus (ILF) [5,28,31,34,44], optic radiations [28], hippocampus and cerebellum [2]. "
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