Davis KA, Kwon A, Cardenas VA, Deicken RF. Decreased cortical gray and cerebral white matter in male patients with familial bipolar I disorder. J Affect Disord 82: 475-485
Previous MRI studies of bipolar disorder have failed to consistently demonstrate cortical gray or cerebral white matter tissue loss, as well as sulcal or ventricular enlargement. The inconsistencies are most likely due to the clinical and gender heterogeneity of the study populations as well as the different MRI acquisition and processing techniques. The objective of this study was to determine if there was a cortical gray matter and cerebral white matter deficit as well as sulcal and ventricular enlargement in a homogeneous sample of euthymic male patients with familial bipolar I disorder. MRI tissue segmentation was utilized to obtain cortical gray matter, cerebral white matter, ventricular cerebrospinal fluid (CSF), and sulcal CSF volumes in 22 euthymic males with familial bipolar I disorder and 32 healthy male control subjects. Relative to the controls, the familial bipolar I patients demonstrated: (1) significant reductions of both cortical gray matter and cerebral white matter volumes; and (2) significant increases in both sulcal and ventricular CSF volumes. In the bipolar group, there was a significant negative correlation between cortical gray matter volume and sulcal CSF volume. Small sample size, retrospective interviews, possible medication effects. These results provide evidence for significant cortical gray matter and cerebral white matter deficits and associated sulcal and ventricular enlargement in euthymic males with familial bipolar I disorder.