Deanna M Barch

Washington University in St. Louis, San Luis, Missouri, United States

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Publications (290)1611.27 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Objective Previous studies have examined the relationships between structural brain characteristics and early life stress in adults. However, there is limited evidence for functional brain variation associated with early life stress in children. We hypothesized that early life stress and trauma would be associated with increased functional brain activation to negative emotional faces in children with and without a history of depression. Method Psychiatric diagnosis and life events in children (starting at ages 3-5) were assessed in a longitudinal study. A follow-up magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) study acquired data (N = 115 at ages 7-12, 51% female) on functional brain response to fearful, sad, and happy faces relative to neutral faces. We used a region of interest (ROI) mask within cortico-limbic areas and conducted regression analyses and repeated-measures analysis of covariance (ANCOVA). Results Greater activations to fearful, sad, and happy faces in the amygdala and its neighboring regions were found in children with higher life stress. Moreover, an association between life stress and left hippocampal and globus pallidus activity depended on children’s diagnostic status. Finally, all children with higher life trauma showed greater bilateral amygdala and cingulate activity specific to sad faces, but not the other emotional faces, although right amygdala activity was moderated by psychiatric status. Conclusions These findings may suggest that limbic hyperactivity is a biomarker of early life stress and trauma in children and may have implications in the risk trajectory for depression and other stress-related disorders. However, this pattern varied based on emotion type and history of psychopathology.
    Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry 07/2014; 53(7):800-813.e10. · 6.97 Impact Factor
  • Deanna M Barch
    Schizophrenia bulletin. 06/2014;
  • Deanna M Barch
    Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry 05/2014; 53(5):497-9. · 6.97 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: When used effectively, cognitive reappraisal of distressing events is a highly adaptive cognitive emotion regulation (CER) strategy, with impairments in cognitive reappraisal associated with greater risk for psychopathology. Despite extensive literature examining the neural correlates of cognitive reappraisal in healthy and psychiatrically ill adults, there is a dearth of data to inform the neural bases of CER in children, a key gap in the literature necessary to map the developmental trajectory of cognitive reappraisal. In this fMRI study, psychiatrically healthy schoolchildren were instructed to use cognitive reappraisal to modulate their emotional reactions and responses of negative affect after viewing sad photos. Consistent with the adult literature, when actively engaged in reappraisal compared to passively viewing sad photos, children showed increased activation in the vlPFC, dlPFC, and dmPFC as well as in parietal and temporal lobe regions. When children used cognitive reappraisal to minimize their experience of negative affect after viewing sad stimuli they exhibited dampened amygdala responses. Results are discussed in relation to the importance of identifying and characterizing neural processes underlying adaptive CER strategies in typically developing children in order to understand how these systems go awry and relate to the risk and occurrence of affective disorders.
    Developmental cognitive neuroscience. 02/2014; 9C:136-147.
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    Dataset: mmc1
    Katherine R. Luking, Joan Luby, Deanna M. Barch
  • Jared X Van Snellenberg, Deanna M Barch
    Cognitive Affective & Behavioral Neuroscience 01/2014; · 3.87 Impact Factor
  • Ann M Kring, Deanna M Barch
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    ABSTRACT: A range of emotional and motivation impairments have long been clinically documented in people with schizophrenia, and there has been a resurgence of interest in understanding the psychological and neural mechanisms of the so-called "negative symptoms" in schizophrenia, given their lack of treatment responsiveness and their role in constraining function and life satisfaction in this illness. Negative symptoms comprise two domains, with the first covering diminished motivation and pleasure across a range of life domains and the second covering diminished verbal and non-verbal expression and communicative output. In this review, we focus on four aspects of the motivation/pleasure domain, providing a brief review of the behavioral and neural underpinnings of this domain. First, we cover liking or in-the-moment pleasure: immediate responses to pleasurable stimuli. Second, we cover anticipatory pleasure or wanting, which involves prediction of a forthcoming enjoyable outcome (reward) and feeling pleasure in anticipation of that outcome. Third, we address motivation, which comprises effort computation, which involves figuring out how much effort is needed to achieve a desired outcome, planning, and behavioral response. Finally, we cover the maintenance emotional states and behavioral responses. Throughout, we consider the behavioral manifestations and brain representations of these four aspects of motivation/pleasure deficits in schizophrenia. We conclude with directions for future research as well as implications for treatment.
    European neuropsychopharmacology: the journal of the European College of Neuropsychopharmacology 01/2014; · 3.68 Impact Factor
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  • Jessica A Wojtalik, Deanna M Barch
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    ABSTRACT: There has been little investigation of the effects of past substance abuse (SA) on working memory (WM) impairments in schizophrenia. This study examined the behavioral and neurobiological impact of past SA (6 months or longer abstinence period) on WM in schizophrenia. Thirty-seven schizophrenia patients (17 with past SA and 20 without) and 32 controls (12 with past SA and 20 without) completed two versions of a two-back WM task during fMRI scanning on separate days. Analyses focused on regions whose patterns of activation replicated across both n-back tasks. Schizophrenia patients were significantly less accurate than controls on both n-back tasks. No main effects or interactions with past SA on WM performance were observed. However, several fronto-parietal-thalamic regions showed an interaction between diagnostic group and past SA. These regions were significantly more active in controls with past SA compared to controls without past SA. Schizophrenia patients with or without past SA either showed no significant differences, or patients with past SA showed somewhat less activation compared to patients without past SA during WM. These results suggest robust effects of past SA on WM brain functioning in controls, but less impact of past SA in schizophrenia. This is consistent with previous literature indicating less impaired neurocognition in schizophrenia with SA.
    Frontiers in Psychiatry 01/2014; 5:1.
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    Katherine R. Luking, Joan Luby, Deanna M. Barch
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    ABSTRACT: The development of reward-related neural systems, from adolescence through adulthood, has received much recent attention in the developmental neuroimaging literature. However, few studies have investigated behavioral and neural responses to both gains and losses in pre-pubertal child populations. To address this gap in the literature, in the present study healthy children aged 7-11 years and young-adults completed an fMRI card-guessing game using candy pieces delivered post-scan as an incentive. Age differences in behavioral and neural responses to candy gains/losses were investigated. Adults and children displayed similar responses to gains, but robust age differences were observed following candy losses within the caudate, thalamus, insula, and hippocampus. Interestingly, when task behavior was included as a factor in post-hoc mediation analyses, activation following loss within the caudate/thalamus related to task behavior and relationships with age were no longer significant. Conversely, relationships between response to loss and age within the hippocampus and insula remained significant even when controlling for behavior, with children showing heightened loss responses within the dorsal/posterior insula. These results suggest that both age and task behavior influence responses within the extended reward circuitry, and that children seem to be more sensitive than adults to loss feedback particularly within the dorsal/posterior insula.
    Developmental Cognitive Neuroscience. 01/2014;
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    ABSTRACT: In this study, we examined the morphology of the basal ganglia and thalamus in bipolar disorder (BP), schizophrenia-spectrum disorders (SCZ-S), and healthy controls (HC) with particular interest in differences related to the absence or presence of psychosis. Volumetric and shape analyses of the basal ganglia and thalamus were performed in 33 BP individuals [12 without history of psychotic features (NPBP) and 21 with history of psychotic features (PBP)], 32 SCZ-S individuals [28 with SCZ and 4 with schizoaffective disorder], and 27 HC using FreeSurfer-initiated large deformation diffeomorphic metric mapping. Significant volume differences were found in the caudate and globus pallidus, with volumes smallest in the NPBP group. Shape abnormalities showing inward deformation of superior regions of the caudate were observed in BP (and especially in NPBP) compared with HC. Shape differences were also found in the globus pallidus and putamen when comparing the BP and SCZ-S groups. No significant differences were seen in the nucleus accumbens and thalamus. In summary, structural abnormalities in the caudate and globus pallidus are present in BP and SCZ-S. Differences were more apparent in the NPBP subgroup. The findings herein highlight the potential importance of separately examining BP subgroups in neuroimaging studies.
    Psychiatry Research Neuroimaging 01/2014; · 3.36 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Cannabis use is associated with working memory (WM) impairments; however, the relationship between cannabis use and WM neural circuitry is unclear. We examined whether a cannabis use disorder (CUD) was associated with differences in brain morphology between control subjects with and without a CUD and between schizophrenia subjects with and without a CUD, and whether these differences related to WM and CUD history. Subjects group-matched on demographics included 44 healthy controls, 10 subjects with a CUD history, 28 schizophrenia subjects with no history of substance use disorders, and 15 schizophrenia subjects with a CUD history. Large-deformation high-dimensional brain mapping with magnetic resonance imaging was used to obtain surface-based representations of the striatum, globus pallidus, and thalamus, compared across groups, and correlated with WM and CUD history. Surface maps were generated to visualize morphological differences. There were significant cannabis-related parametric decreases in WM across groups. Similar cannabis-related shape differences were observed in the striatum, globus pallidus, and thalamus in controls and schizophrenia subjects. Cannabis-related striatal and thalamic shape differences correlated with poorer WM and younger age of CUD onset in both groups. Schizophrenia subjects demonstrated cannabis-related neuroanatomical differences that were consistent and exaggerated compared with cannabis-related differences found in controls. The cross-sectional results suggest that both CUD groups were characterized by WM deficits and subcortical neuroanatomical differences. Future longitudinal studies could help determine whether cannabis use contributes to these observed shape differences or whether they are biomarkers of a vulnerability to the effects of cannabis that predate its misuse.
    Schizophrenia Bulletin 12/2013; · 8.80 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: We examined whether depression and anxiety disorders in early childhood were associated with changes in resting state functional connectivity (RSFC) of the ventral attention network (VAN), and whether RSFC in the VAN was associated with alterations in attention specific to these disorders. Important clinical features of these illnesses, including changes in attention toward novel stimuli and changes in attention to stimuli of negative valence (threat/sad bias), indirectly implicate the VAN. We collected resting state functional magnetic resonance imaging data in children aged 8 to 12 years. Data were volume censored to reduce artifact from submillimeter movement, resulting in analyzable data from 30 children with a history of depression and/or anxiety and 42 children with no psychiatric history. We compared pairwise RSFC among the following VAN regions: right ventro-lateral prefrontal cortex (VLPFC), right posterior superior temporal gyrus (pSTG), and right ventral supramarginal gyrus (vSMG). We also collected measures of threat bias and current clinical symptoms. Children with a history of depression and/or anxiety had reduced RSFC among the regions of the VAN compared to children with no psychiatric history. The magnitude of VAN RSFC was correlated with measures of attention bias toward threat but not with current depressive, internalizing, or externalizing symptoms. No RSFC changes were detected between groups among homotopic left hemisphere regions. Disruption in the VAN may be an early feature of depression and anxiety disorders. VAN changes were associated with attention bias and clinical history but not with current symptoms of depression and anxiety.
    Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry 12/2013; 52(12):1326-1336.e5. · 6.97 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Depression has been linked to increased cortisol reactivity and differences in limbic brain volumes, yet the mechanisms underlying these alterations are unclear. One main hypothesis is that stress causes these effects. This is supported by animal studies showing that chronic stress or glucocorticoid administration can lead to alterations in hippocampal and amygdala structure. Relatedly, life stress is cited as one of the major risk factors for depression and candidate gene studies have related variation in stress-system genes to increased prevalence and severity of depression. The present study tested the hypothesis that genetic profile scores combining variance across 10 single nucleotide polymorphisms from four stress-system genes (CRHR1, NR3C2, NR3C1, FKBP5) and early life stress would predict increases in cortisol levels during laboratory stressors in 120 preschool-age children (3-5 years old), as well as hippocampal and amygdala volumes assessed with MRI in these same children at school age (7-12 years old). We found that stress-system genetic profile scores positively predicted cortisol levels while the number of stressful/traumatic life events experienced by 3-5 years old negatively predicted cortisol levels. The interaction of genetic profile scores and early life stress predicted left hippocampal and left amygdala volumes. Cortisol partially mediated the effects of genetic variation and life stress on limbic brain volumes, particularly on left amygdala volume. These results suggest that stress-related genetic and early environmental factors contribute to variation in stress cortisol reactivity and limbic brain volumes in children, phenotypes associated with depression in adulthood.Neuropsychopharmacology accepted article preview online, 25 November 2013. doi:10.1038/npp.2013.327.
    Neuropsychopharmacology: official publication of the American College of Neuropsychopharmacology 11/2013; · 8.68 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Spontaneous fluctuations in activity in different parts of the brain can be used to study functional brain networks. We review the use of resting-state functional MRI (rfMRI) for the purpose of mapping the macroscopic functional connectome. After describing MRI acquisition and image-processing methods commonly used to generate data in a form amenable to connectomics network analysis, we discuss different approaches for estimating network structure from that data. Finally, we describe new possibilities resulting from the high-quality rfMRI data being generated by the Human Connectome Project and highlight some upcoming challenges in functional connectomics.
    Trends in Cognitive Sciences 11/2013; · 16.01 Impact Factor
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  • Robert S Kern, William P Horan, Deanna M Barch
    American Journal of Psychiatry 11/2013; 170(11):1226-31. · 14.72 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: IMPORTANCE The study provides novel data to inform the mechanisms by which poverty negatively impacts childhood brain development. OBJECTIVE To investigate whether the income-to-needs ratio experienced in early childhood impacts brain development at school age and to explore the mediators of this effect. DESIGN, SETTING, AND PARTICIPANTS This study was conducted at an academic research unit at the Washington University School of Medicine in St Louis. Data from a prospective longitudinal study of emotion development in preschool children who participated in neuroimaging at school age were used to investigate the effects of poverty on brain development. Children were assessed annually for 3 to 6 years prior to the time of a magnetic resonance imaging scan, during which they were evaluated on psychosocial, behavioral, and other developmental dimensions. Preschoolers included in the study were 3 to 6 years of age and were recruited from primary care and day care sites in the St Louis metropolitan area; they were annually assessed behaviorally for 5 to 10 years. Healthy preschoolers and those with clinical symptoms of depression participated in neuroimaging at school age/early adolescence. EXPOSURE Household poverty as measured by the income-to-needs ratio. MAIN OUTCOMES AND MEASURES Brain volumes of children's white matter and cortical gray matter, as well as hippocampus and amygdala volumes, obtained using magnetic resonance imaging. Mediators of interest were caregiver support/hostility measured observationally during the preschool period and stressful life events measured prospectively. RESULTS Poverty was associated with smaller white and cortical gray matter and hippocampal and amygdala volumes. The effects of poverty on hippocampal volume were mediated by caregiving support/hostility on the left and right, as well as stressful life events on the left. CONCLUSIONS AND RELEVANCE The finding that exposure to poverty in early childhood materially impacts brain development at school age further underscores the importance of attention to the well-established deleterious effects of poverty on child development. Findings that these effects on the hippocampus are mediated by caregiving and stressful life events suggest that attempts to enhance early caregiving should be a focused public health target for prevention and early intervention. Findings substantiate the behavioral literature on the negative effects of poverty on child development and provide new data confirming that effects extend to brain development. Mechanisms for these effects on the hippocampus are suggested to inform intervention.
    JAMA pediatrics. 10/2013;
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    ABSTRACT: The primary goal of the Human Connectome Project (HCP) is to delineate the typical patterns of structural and functional connectivity in the healthy adult human brain. However, we know that there are important individual differences in such patterns of connectivity, with evidence that this variability is associated with alterations in important cognitive and behavioral variables that affect real world function. The HCP data will be a critical stepping-off point for future studies that will examine how variation in human structural and functional connectivity play a role in adult and pediatric neurological and psychiatric disorders that account for a huge amount of public health resources. Thus, the HCP is collecting behavioral measures of a range of motor, sensory, cognitive and emotional processes that will delineate a core set of functions relevant to understanding the relationship between brain connectivity and human behavior. In addition, the HCP is using task-fMRI (tfMRI) to help delineate the relationships between individual differences in the neurobiological substrates of mental processing and both functional and structural connectivity, as well as to help characterize and validate the connectivity analyses to be conducted on the structural and functional connectivity data. This paper describes the logic and rationale behind the development of the behavioral, individual difference, and tfMRI batteries and provides preliminary data on the patterns of activation associated with each of the fMRI tasks, at both group and individual levels.
    NeuroImage 10/2013; 80:169-89. · 6.25 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The Human Connectome Project (HCP) has developed protocols, standard operating and quality control procedures, and a suite of informatics tools to enable high throughput data collection, data sharing, automated data processing and analysis, and data mining and visualization. Quality control procedures include methods to maintain data collection consistency over time, to measure head motion, and to establish quantitative modality-specific overall quality assessments. Database services developed as customizations of the XNAT imaging informatics platform support both internal daily operations and open access data sharing. The Connectome Workbench visualization environment enables user interaction with HCP data and is increasingly integrated with the HCP's database services. Here we describe the current state of these procedures and tools and their application in the ongoing HCP study.
    NeuroImage 10/2013; 80:202-19. · 6.25 Impact Factor

Publication Stats

16k Citations
1,611.27 Total Impact Points


  • 1999–2014
    • Washington University in St. Louis
      • • Department of Psychiatry
      • • Department of Psychology
      San Luis, Missouri, United States
  • 2013
    • Vanderbilt University
      Nashville, Michigan, United States
    • University of Oxford
      • Oxford Centre for Functional MRI of the Brain (FMRIB Centre)
      Oxford, England, United Kingdom
    • University of Florida
      Gainesville, Florida, United States
    • The Psychonomic Society
      Society Hill, New Jersey, United States
    • CUNY Graduate Center
      New York City, New York, United States
    • CSU Mentor
      Long Beach, California, United States
    • New York State Psychiatric Institute
      New York City, New York, United States
  • 2012
    • Rutgers New Jersey Medical School
      Newark, New Jersey, United States
    • Skidmore College
      • Department of Psychology
      Saratoga Springs, NY, United States
    • Community Health Center, Connecticut
      Middletown, Connecticut, United States
    • National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)
      Maryland, United States
  • 2010–2012
    • University of Ljubljana
      • Department of Psychology
      Ljubljana, Ljubljana, Slovenia
    • Harvard University
      Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States
  • 2005–2012
    • University of Washington Seattle
      • • Department of Psychology
      • • Department of Neurology
      • • Department of Radiology
      Seattle, WA, United States
    • University of Minnesota Twin Cities
      • Department of Psychology
      Minneapolis, MN, United States
  • 2011
    • University of Maryland, Baltimore
      • Department of Psychiatry
      Baltimore, MD, United States
    • National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism
      Maryland, United States
    • Rhode Island Hospital
      Providence, Rhode Island, United States
    • Yale University
      • Department of Psychiatry
      New Haven, CT, United States
  • 2008–2011
    • Northwestern University
      • • Feinberg School of Medicine
      • • Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences
      Evanston, IL, United States
    • Washington & Lee University
      Lexington, Virginia, United States
    • University of Missouri
      • Department of Psychological Sciences
      Columbia, MO, United States
    • Princeton University
      Princeton, New Jersey, United States
  • 2004–2011
    • Washington School of Psychiatry
      Washington, Washington, D.C., United States
    • University of Missouri - St. Louis
      Saint Louis, Michigan, United States
  • 2007–2010
    • University of California, Davis
      • Center for Comparative Medicine
      Davis, CA, United States
  • 2007–2008
    • Mount Sinai School of Medicine
      • Department of Psychiatry
      Manhattan, NY, United States
  • 2004–2008
    • University of California, Los Angeles
      • Department of Psychology
      Los Angeles, CA, United States
  • 2006
    • Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research
      Rochester, Michigan, United States
  • 1996–2005
    • University of Pittsburgh
      • Department of Psychiatry
      Pittsburgh, PA, United States
  • 2003
    • Howard Hughes Medical Institute
      Maryland, United States
  • 2001
    • Carnegie Mellon University
      • Department of Psychology
      Pittsburgh, PA, United States
  • 1994–1997
    • University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
      • Department of Psychology
      Urbana, IL, United States