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Randomized Controlled Trial
, 34 (1), 235-42

Multivariate Voxel-Based Morphometry Successfully Differentiates Schizophrenia Patients From Healthy Controls

Randomized Controlled Trial

Multivariate Voxel-Based Morphometry Successfully Differentiates Schizophrenia Patients From Healthy Controls

Yasuhiro Kawasaki et al. Neuroimage.


Currently available laboratory procedures might provide additional information to psychiatric diagnostic systems for more valid classifications of mental disorders. To identify the correlative pattern of gray matter distribution that best discriminates schizophrenia patients from healthy subjects, we applied discriminant function analysis techniques using the multivariate linear model and the voxel-based morphometry. The first analysis was conducted to obtain a statistical model that classified 30 male healthy subjects and 30 male schizophrenia patients diagnosed according to current operational criteria. The second analysis was performed to prospectively validate the statistical model by successfully classifying a new cohort that consisted of 16 male healthy subjects and 16 male schizophrenia patients. Inferences about the structural relevance of the gray matter distribution could be made if the individual profile of pattern expression could be linked to the specific diagnosis of each subject. The result was that 90% of the subjects were correctly classified by the eigenimage, and the Jackknife approach revealed well above chance accuracy. The pattern of the eigenimage was characterized by positive loadings indicating gray matter decline in the patients in the lateral and medial prefrontal regions, insula, lateral temporal regions, medial temporal structures, and thalamus as well as the negative loadings reflecting gray matter increase in the patients in the putamen and cerebellum. When the eigenimage derived from the original cohort was applied to classify data from the second cohort, it correctly assigned more than 80% of the healthy subjects and schizophrenia patients. These findings suggest that the characteristic distribution of gray matter changes may be of diagnostic value for schizophrenia.

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