Subgenual prefrontal cortex of child and adolescent bipolar patients: a morphometric magnetic resonance imaging study

Psychiatry Res. 2005 Jan 30;138(1):43-9. doi: 10.1016/j.pscychresns.2004.11.004.


The subgenual prefrontal cortex (SGPFC) plays an important role in emotional processing. We carried out a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) study comparing the volume of the SGPFC in child and adolescent bipolar patients and healthy controls. The sample consisted of 15 children and adolescents who met DSM-IV criteria for bipolar disorder (mean age +/- S.D.=15.5 +/- 3.5 years) and 21 healthy adolescents (mean age +/- S.D.=16.9 +/- 3.8 years). MR images were obtained with a 1.5 T GE Signa Imaging System with Signa 5.4.3 software. SGPFC volumes were measured with the semi-automated software MedX (Sensor Systems, Sterling, VA, USA). ANCOVA was performed to compare SGPFC volumes between groups, using age, gender and intra-cranial volume (ICV) as covariates. The volumes (mean +/- S.D.) of the right and left SGPFC for bipolar patients were 291.27 +/- 88.70 mm(3) and 284.86 +/- 83.98 mm(3), respectively. For healthy controls, the right and left SGPFC volumes were 284.95 +/- 73.33 mm(3) and 307.55 +/- 73.67 mm(3), respectively. There were no statistically significant differences between groups regarding right or left SGPFC volumes. We found no evidence of volumetric abnormalities in the SGPFC of bipolar children and adolescents.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Bipolar Disorder / diagnosis*
  • Child
  • Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging*
  • Male
  • Prefrontal Cortex / anatomy & histology*
  • Severity of Illness Index