Morphometric alterations of anterior superior temporal cortex in obsessive-compulsive disorder

Depress Anxiety. 2006;23(5):290-6. doi: 10.1002/da.20171.


The superior temporal gyrus (STG) may be involved in the pathophysiology of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). Moreover, the anterior STG has rich interconnections with the orbitofrontal cortex and the amygdala, and plays a role in visuospatial processing, which is impaired in patients with OCD. This study was designed to examine the morphological abnormalities of the anterior STG and their relationships with visuospatial function and clinical symptom in patients with OCD. We measured gray matter volumes of the anterior STG [rostral STG and planum polare (PP)] by three-dimensional (3D) magnetic resonance imaging in age- and sex-matched groups, which consisted of 22 patients with OCD and 22 normal volunteers. Visuospatial function and clinical symptom were assessed using the Rey-Osterrieth Complex Figure (ROCF) test, the Yale-Brown Obsessive Compulsive Scale, and the Maudsley Obsessive Compulsive Inventory. We found significant volume reductions in bilateral PPs, but there were no significant correlations between brain volumes and the ROCF copy score, immediate or delayed recall score, and clinical symptom in patients with OCD. These results suggest that volume reduction of the anterior STG, especially the PP, may be related to the pathophysiology of OCD, but further research may be needed to explore a relationship of the PP volume change with cognitive impairment observed in patients with OCD.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Imaging, Three-Dimensional
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Male
  • Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder / pathology*
  • Temporal Lobe / pathology*