Effect of dopamine transporter genotype on intrinsic functional connectivity depends on cognitive state.
ABSTRACT Functional connectivity between brain regions can define large-scale neural networks and provide information about relationships between those networks. We examined how relationships within and across intrinsic connectivity networks were 1) sensitive to individual differences in dopaminergic function, 2) modulated by cognitive state, and 3) associated with executive behavioral traits. We found that regardless of cognitive state, connections between frontal, parietal, and striatal nodes of Task-Positive networks (TPNs) and Task-Negative networks (TNNs) showed higher functional connectivity in 10/10 homozygotes of the dopamine transporter gene, a polymorphism influencing synaptic dopamine, than in 9/10 heterozygotes. However, performance of a working memory task (a state requiring dopamine release) modulated genotype differences selectively, such that cross-network connectivity between TPNs and TNNs was higher in 10/10 than 9/10 subjects during working memory but not during rest. This increased cross-network connectivity was associated with increased self-reported measures of impulsivity and inattention traits. By linking a gene regulating synaptic dopamine to a phenotype characterized by inefficient executive function, these findings validate cross-network connectivity as an endophenotype of executive dysfunction.
- SourceAvailable from: Marco Leyton[Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Spatial patterns of functional connectivity derived from resting brain activity may be used to elucidate the topological properties of brain networks. Such networks are amenable to study using graph theory, which shows that they possess small world properties and can be used to differentiate healthy subjects and patient populations. Of particular interest is the possibility that some of these differences are related to alterations in the dopamine system. To investigate the role of dopamine in the topological organization of brain networks at rest, we tested the effects of reducing dopamine synthesis in 13 healthy subjects undergoing functional magnetic resonance imaging. All subjects were scanned twice, in a resting state, following ingestion of one of two amino acid drinks in a randomized, double-blind manner. One drink was a nutritionally balanced amino acid mixture, and the other was tyrosine and phenylalanine deficient. Functional connectivity between 90 cortical and subcortical regions was estimated for each individual subject under each dopaminergic condition. The lowered dopamine state caused the following network changes: reduced global and local efficiency of the whole brain network, reduced regional efficiency in limbic areas, reduced modularity of brain networks, and greater connection between the normally anti-correlated task-positive and default-mode networks. We conclude that dopamine plays a role in maintaining the efficient small-world properties and high modularity of functional brain networks, and in segregating the task-positive and default-mode networks.Neuropharmacology 01/2014; · 4.11 Impact Factor
- [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) is an emerging low-cost noninvasive neuroimaging technique that measures cortical bloodflow. While fNIRS has gained interest as a potential alternative to fMRI for use with clinical and pediatric populations, it remains unclear whether fNIRS has the necessary sensitivity to serve as a replacement for fMRI. The present study set out to examine whether fNIRS has the sensitivity to detect linear changes in activation and functional connectivity in response to cognitive load, and functional connectivity changes when transitioning from a task-free resting state to a task. Sixteen young adult subjects were scanned with a continuous-wave fNIRS system during a 10-min resting-state scan followed by a letter n-back task with three load conditions. Five optical probes were placed over frontal and parietal cortices, covering bilateral dorsolateral PFC (dlPFC), bilateral ventrolateral PFC (vlPFC), frontopolar cortex (FP), and bilateral parietal cortex. Activation was found to scale linearly with working memory load in bilateral prefrontal cortex. Functional connectivity increased with increasing n-back loads for fronto-parietal, interhemispheric dlPFC, and local connections. Functional connectivity differed between the resting state scan and the n-back scan, with fronto-parietal connectivity greater during the n-back, and interhemispheric vlPFC connectivity greater during rest. These results demonstrate that fNIRS is sensitive to both cognitive load and state, suggesting that fNIRS is well-suited to explore the full complement of neuroimaging research questions and will serve as a viable alternative to fMRI.Frontiers in Human Neuroscience 01/2014; 8:76. · 2.91 Impact Factor
- [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: IMPORTANCE Interactions of large-scale brain networks may underlie cognitive dysfunctions in psychiatric and addictive disorders. OBJECTIVES To test the hypothesis that the strength of coupling among 3 large-scale brain networks-salience, executive control, and default mode-will reflect the state of nicotine withdrawal (vs smoking satiety) and will predict abstinence-induced craving and cognitive deficits and to develop a resource allocation index (RAI) that reflects the combined strength of interactions among the 3 large-scale networks. DESIGN, SETTING, AND PARTICIPANTS A within-subject functional magnetic resonance imaging study in an academic medical center compared resting-state functional connectivity coherence strength after 24 hours of abstinence and after smoking satiety. We examined the relationship of abstinence-induced changes in the RAI with alterations in subjective, behavioral, and neural functions. We included 37 healthy smoking volunteers, aged 19 to 61 years, for analyses. INTERVENTIONS Twenty-four hours of abstinence vs smoking satiety. MAIN OUTCOMES AND MEASURES Inter-network connectivity strength (primary) and the relationship with subjective, behavioral, and neural measures of nicotine withdrawal during abstinence vs smoking satiety states (secondary). RESULTS The RAI was significantly lower in the abstinent compared with the smoking satiety states (left RAI, P = .002; right RAI, P = .04), suggesting weaker inhibition between the default mode and salience networks. Weaker inter-network connectivity (reduced RAI) predicted abstinence-induced cravings to smoke (r = -0.59; P = .007) and less suppression of default mode activity during performance of a subsequent working memory task (ventromedial prefrontal cortex, r = -0.66, P = .003; posterior cingulate cortex, r = -0.65, P = .001). CONCLUSIONS AND RELEVANCE Alterations in coupling of the salience and default mode networks and the inability to disengage from the default mode network may be critical in cognitive/affective alterations that underlie nicotine dependence.JAMA Psychiatry 03/2014; · 12.01 Impact Factor