Corpus callosum in maltreated children with posttraumatic stress disorder: a diffusion tensor imaging study.
ABSTRACT Contrary to expectations derived from preclinical studies of the effects of stress, and imaging studies of adults with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), there is no evidence of hippocampus atrophy in children with PTSD. Multiple pediatric studies have reported reductions in the corpus callosum--the primary white matter tract in the brain. Consequently, in the present study, diffusion tensor imaging was used to assess white matter integrity in the corpus callosum in 17 maltreated children with PTSD and 15 demographically matched normal controls. Children with PTSD had reduced fractional anisotropy in the medial and posterior corpus, a region which contains interhemispheric projections from brain structures involved in circuits that mediate the processing of emotional stimuli and various memory functions--core disturbances associated with a history of trauma. Further exploration of the effects of stress on the corpus callosum and white matter development appears a promising strategy to better understand the pathophysiology of PTSD in children.
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ABSTRACT: Perceived stress reflects the extent to which situations are appraised as stressful at a given point in one's life. Past brain imaging studies have examined activation patterns underlying the stress response, yet focal differences in brain structures related to perceived stress are not well understood, especially when considering gray matter (GM) and white matter (WM) structures simultaneously. In this study, voxel-based morphometry was used to investigate relations between GM/WM volume and perceived stress levels in a large young adult sample. Participants (138 men, 166 women) completed the Perceived Stress Scale (PSS; Cohen et al., 1983) and underwent an anatomical magnetic resonance imaging scan. Higher PSS scores were associated with larger GM volume in a cluster that included regions in the bilateral parahippocampal gyrus, fusiform cortex, and entorhinal cortex and smaller GM volume in a cluster that included regions of the right insular cortex. Higher PSS scores were also related to smaller WM volume in a cluster that included the body of the corpus callosum. This pattern of results remained significant even after controlling for effects of general intelligence, socioeconomic status, and depression. Together, findings suggest a unique structural basis for individual differences in perceived stress, distributed across different GM and WM regions of the brain.NeuroImage 02/2014; 92. DOI:10.1016/j.neuroimage.2014.01.044 · 6.13 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Background Hypercortisolism leads to various physical, psychological and cognitive symptoms, which may partly persist after treatment of Cushing's disease. The aim of the present study was to investigate abnormalities in white matter integrity in patients with long-term remission of Cushing's disease, and their relation with psychological symptoms, cognitive impairment and clinical characteristics. Methods In patients with long-term remission of Cushing's disease (n = 22) and matched healthy controls (n = 22) we examined fractional anisotropy (FA) values of white matter in a region-of-interest (ROI; bilateral cingulate cingulum, bilateral hippocampal cingulum, bilateral uncinate fasciculus and corpus callosum) and the whole brain, using 3 T diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) and a tract-based spatial statistics (TBSS) approach. Psychological and cognitive functioning were assessed with validated questionnaires and clinical severity was assessed using the Cushing's syndrome Severity Index. Results The ROI analysis showed FA reductions in all of the hypothesized regions, with the exception of the bilateral hippocampal cingulum, in patients when compared to controls. The exploratory whole brain analysis showed multiple regions with lower FA values throughout the brain. Patients reported more apathy (p = .003) and more depressive symptoms (p < .001), whereas depression symptom severity in the patient group was negatively associated with FA in the left uncinate fasciculus (p < 0.05). Post-hoc analyses showed increased radial and mean diffusivity in the patient group. Conclusion Patients with a history of endogenous hypercortisolism in present remission show widespread changes of white matter integrity in the brain, with abnormalities in the integrity of the uncinate fasciculus being related to severity of depressive symptoms, suggesting persistent structural effects of hypercortisolism.01/2014; 4. DOI:10.1016/j.nicl.2014.01.017
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ABSTRACT: Objectives: Structural magnetic resonance imaging (sMRI) studies of anxiety disorders in children and adolescents are limited. Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) have been best studied in this regard. We systematically reviewed structural neuroimaging findings in pediatric PTSD and OCD. Methods: The literature was reviewed for all sMRI studies examining volumetric parameters using PubMed, ScienceDirect, and PsychInfo databases, with no limit on the time frame of publication. Nine studies in pediatric PTSD and six in OCD were suitable for inclusion. Results: Volumetric findings were inconsistent in both disorders. In PTSD, findings suggest increased as well as decreased volumes of the prefrontal cortex (PFC) and corpus callosum; whilst in OCD studies indicate volumetric increase of the putamen, with inconsistent findings for the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) and frontal regions. Conclusions: Methodological differences may account for some of this inconsistency and additional volume-based studies in pediatric anxiety disorders using more uniform approaches are needed.Frontiers in Psychology 12/2012; 3:568. DOI:10.3389/fpsyg.2012.00568 · 2.80 Impact Factor